Academic journal article College Composition and Communication

Inside the College Gates: How Class and Culture Matter in Higher Education

Academic journal article College Composition and Communication

Inside the College Gates: How Class and Culture Matter in Higher Education

Article excerpt

From the opening of Chapter 1, Stuber begins exploring what is clearly evident, even in the fliers posted around Benton College's campus; "my initial impres- sion was that its students were at least as invested in the social side of college life as they were in the academic side" (2). From here on through her text, she argues that while higher education is a site of replication for the social and economic norm, she problematized that initial statement by observing higher education provides "opportunities for the contestation of class inequities" (4). Her research methodology includes explorations of these questions on two distinct campuses, one a small (2,300 students), liberal arts private college and the other a big (30,000 undergraduates) state university (18-19). Stuber followed 61 students, 30 from Benton and 31 from Big State University. Stuber is careful to explain her methodology, and presents her concerns in developing ethnographic research that will reveal, yet avoid difficulties of bias, problematic selection of informants, and the variation in data collection caused by her own ease in talking with some students while finding a connection with others more difficult to establish.

What makes this study a step outside those which have preceded it, at least for me, was two-fold. …

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