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Retention and Diversity in Higher Education

Diversity encompasses a variety of social, political, and demographic attributes of individuals, including such social identities as gender, sexual orientation, class, religious affiliation, and geographic origin. Typically, research focused on diversity defines it in racial or ethnic terms. Similarly, while several groups are considered minorities for factors other than race, racial and ethnic minorities are typically the primary targets of minority student retention programs and thus the focus of this entry.

Minority student retention is any effort at the institutional or organizational level, including student organizations, that aims to ensure that minority students continue their matriculation through college. Both 2- and 4-year institutions engage in efforts to retain minority students. Of the ethnic minorities who attend U.S. colleges and universities, African American and Hispanic students receive ...

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