Prospectus Presentation – Camille Havis

April 29, 2014 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm
College of Education, room 409
30 Pryor Street Southwest
Georgia State University, Atlanta, GA 30303

The Underrepresentation of Black Students in Advanced Placement: Student Perceptions of Peers, Teachers, and School
by Camille Havis

Equity and access is a prominent theme throughout much of the Advanced Placement (AP) language via the College Board and its AP communications to schools. It describes a nationwide effort for high schools to increase participation rates of Black and Hispanic students in AP classes. Although tlus is a major theme in each of the AP Reports to the Nation, Black students continue to be the most under represented students in AP courses. The main research question is: How do the interactions of Black students with their peers, teachers, and school; if any, contribute to their underrepresentation in Advanced Placement coursework?

This dissertation describes Black students’ beliefs of high school today, and what they think is academically necessary for them to succeed at the post secondary level. It offers the perspectives of nine Black students to determine if there is any influence on AP enrollment by their peers, teachers, or school. This qualitative study utilizes invitational theory, which is a set of corresponding conventions about how people think and behave to increase the probability of a positive outcome. By using invitational theory, the thoughts and actions of students are used to explain the underrepresentation phenomenon. The data provides insight on school socialization and how it influences students’ academic choices, actions, and expectations. It also allows for informed decision-making regarding the need, if any, for the College Board’s equity and access platform.