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Relational Integration in Schools Through Seating Assignments
Erasmus MC, Netherlands; CSS RECENS Computat Social Sci Lendiilet Res Ctr, Hungary.
Linköping University, Department of Management and Engineering, The Institute for Analytical Sociology, IAS. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences. CSS RECENS Computat Social Sci Lendiilet Res Ctr, Hungary.
2019 (English)In: JASSS: Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation, ISSN 1460-7425, E-ISSN 1460-7425, Vol. 22, no 4, article id 11Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Traditional desegregation policies have improved but not fully solved the problems associated with the reproduction of inequalities and interracial prejudice in schools. This is partly because social networks are inherently segregated within integrated schools and the benefits of contact have not fully materialized. Therefore, new kinds of policies are needed to further improve the situation. This paper investigates the consequences and efficiency of seating arrangements on academic outcomes and prejudice using an agent-based model that reflects real-life asymmetries. We model interpersonal dynamics and study behavior in the classroom in the hypothetical case of a single teacher who defines students seating arrangements. The model incorporates the mechanisms of peer influence on study behavior, on attitude formation, and homophilous selection in order to depict the interrelated dynamics of networks, behavior, and attitudes. We compare various seating arrangement scenarios and observe how GPA distribution and level of prejudice changes over time. Results highlight the advantages and disadvantages of seating strategies. In general, more heterogeneous deskmate pairs lead to a lower level of inequality and prejudice in the classroom, but this strategy does not favor talent management. Further, we evaluate outcomes compared to the absence of external intervention whereby students choose their own deskmates based on homophilous selection. Our model takes into account the fact that homophilous selection may be distorted due to the Acting White phenomenon and pre-existing prejudice. Accounting for these factors implies slower convergence between advantaged and disadvantaged students.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
J A S S S , 2019. Vol. 22, no 4, article id 11
Keywords [en]
Deskmates; Academic Performance; Intervention; Social Networks; Prejudice; Acting White
National Category
Other Mathematics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-162341DOI: 10.18564/jasss.4115ISI: 000493955700011OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-162341DiVA, id: diva2:1374061
Note

Funding Agencies|European Research Council (ERC) under the European Unions Horizon 2020 research and innovation programmeEuropean Research Council (ERC) [648693]

Available from: 2019-11-28 Created: 2019-11-28 Last updated: 2020-01-17

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Takács, Károly
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