Only one in five Asian adults believe race and ethnicity should be a factor in college admissions decisions, according to a new study from the Pew Research Center.
Affirmative action: On Thursday, the think tank released new data on Asian Americans’ views regarding affirmative action ahead of the Supreme Court’s ruling on the matter later this month. The policy, also known as positive action, allows colleges and universities to consider race in admissions, among other factors. The practice was presented as an effort to boost racial diversity within student bodies.
The study: According to Pew’s national survey, 54% of Asian Americans who have heard of affirmative action said it is a “good thing,” 19% said it is a “bad thing” and 27% said they don’t know whether it is good or bad.
Indian adults (60%) were more likely than Vietnamese adults (48%) and Chinese adults (45%) to say affirmative action is a good thing.
Democrats were also found to be more likely to agree with the policy than Republicans, who have more divided views.
The majority: While Asian Republicans and Democrats may differ in their views of affirmative action, the majority in both groups — 90% of Republicans and 69% of Democrats — said race or ethnicity should not be a factor in college admissions.
According to the study, only one in five Asian adults said race or ethnicity should be considered in college admissions. When asked what factors should be considered, most Asian American adults said high school grades (87%), community service (71%) and standardized test scores (71%).
According to another recent Pew Research Center survey of U.S. adults, most Asian adults said affirmative action negatively affects fairness and student quality in colleges and universities.
“There are very, like, pretty big downsides to it but also it hurts Asians the most because, like, affirmative action stuff, like with college board and SAT scores, they dock us down. It’s not based on merit, it’s based on just affirmative action. They want non-Asians – less Asians in there,” a Loatian respondent said.
Pew’s conclusion: Pew Research Center concludes Asian American adults hold mixed views regarding affirmative action.