Moving from Cultures of Individualism to Cultures of Collectivism in Support of Students of Color

Douglas A. Guiffrida, Judy Marquez Kiyama, Stephanie J. Waterman, Samuel D. Museus

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


As described in detail by Museus and Harris (2010), a growing body of literature indicates that campus cultures shape college students’ experiences. Furthermore, the authors point out that research indicates that many college students of color face additional challenges adjusting to predominantly White institutions (PWIs) because their cultural norms and values vary from those of their campuses. Although many cultural variations have been identified among diverse groups and societies, one of the most promising differences that can aid in understanding disparities in college students’ success is the distinction between individualism and collectivism. Individualist societies tend to value independence, competition among members, emotional detachment from family and parents, individual attitudes and perspectives over group norms, and personal goals over the goals of the collective (Triandis, Chen, & Chan, 1998). Alternatively, collectivist societies value interdependence, group synchronization, emotional attachment to families or parents, societal norms over individuality, and the subordination of individual aspirations to the aspirations of the collective (Fox, Lowe, & McClellan, 2005; Triandis, Chen, & Chan, 1998).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCreating Campus Cultures
Subtitle of host publicationFostering Success among Racially Diverse Student Populations
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages20
ISBN (Electronic)9781136836169
ISBN (Print)9780415888196
StatePublished - Jan 1 2012
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences


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