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Nicholas Bowman 1
  • 1 Center for Social Concerns, University of Notre Dame, 164 Geddes Hall Notre Dame, IN 46556, United States

College Diversity Experiences and Cognitive Development: A Meta-Analysis

2013. No. 2. P. 88–132 [issue contents]

Nicholas A. Bowman, Postdoctoral Research Associate at Center for Social Concerns, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN, United States. Email: nbowman@nd.edu
Address: 164 Geddes Hall Notre Dame, IN 46556, United States.

The current study uses meta-analysis to examine the relationship between diversity interactions and cognitive development, as well as the extent to which intensity of this relationship depends on the study characteristics (types of interethnic/intercultural interactions, types of cognitive achievements, and research methodology).

The findings suggest that several types of diversity experiences (cross-racial interactions or same-race interactions between counterparts of different socioeconomic status, culture, or confession; seminars and training courses on ethnocultural diversity) are positively related to several cognitive outcomes.

Cross-racial interactions have a greater impact on cognitive development than same-race interactions, which points to importance of stimulating ethnic diversity among students in order to improve their academic performance.

Ethnocultural diversity positively affects not only cognitive tendencies but also basic cognitive skills, such as critical thinking or problem-solving skills. Connection between diversity experiences and cognitive development is preserved even in unpublished studies, regardless of methods used to measure the result.

Despite discrepancies between some studies, diversity interactions in college have proved to have an overall positive influence on cognitive development among students. Thus, providing a variety of diversity experiences might prolong the effortful thinking and can help each institution foster meaningful development among its students.

Implications for future research and practice are discussed.

Citation: Bowman N. (2013) Opyt vzaimodeystviya s predstavitelyami inykh etnokul'turnykh grupp v kolledzhe i kognitivnoe razvitie: metaanaliz (per. s angl. G. Pokatovicha) [College Diversity Experiences and Cognitive Development: A Meta-Analysis ]. Voprosy obrazovaniya / Educational Studies Moscow, no2, pp. 88-132.
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