The unintended consequences of stigma-free remediation

Regina Deil-Amen, James E. Rosenbaum

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

101 Scopus citations


Social stratification may emerge within efforts to reduce it. Although open admissions policies increase access to college, many students may not really be college students; they are taking noncredit remedial courses, which raises concerns about stigma and "cooled-out" aspirations. Studying two community colleges, this article describes a remedial approach that avoids stigma and cooling out but creates unintended consequences. Analyses of interviews with staff and students and of institutional procedures show how this approach arises. The analyses also indicate how this approach inhibits and delays students' awareness of their remedial status, causes them to misjudge their prospects, and prevents them from considering alternative options.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)249-268
Number of pages20
JournalSociology of Education
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Sociology and Political Science


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