Title

Affirmative Action: History and Analysis

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2004

Abstract

From its inception, affirmative action policies were created to improve the employment and/or educational opportunities for members of minority groups and women. Even today, however, the debate continues over the future of affirmative action. Proponents offer empirical evidence illustrating that affirmative action has been favorable in aiding minorities and/or women to achieve parity in seeking education at the most elite institutions in this country. This empirical evidence has focused on descriptive statistics such as increasing enrollment for minorities (NCES, 2001). Research supports that affirmative action promotes academic and social development for all students; diverse classrooms do not weaken student quality or intellectual skills; racial and ethnic classrooms actually enrich educational experiences of white students; and multi-racial/multi-ethnic classrooms enhance educational outcomes for all students (Algers et al., 2000).