Abstract

At the heart of the longstanding debate of addressing racial inequities in higher education is an argument about whether race should be a factor in admissions decisions. One argument is that institutions should be held accountable for diversity through external policies like affirmative action. Alternatively, there is the position that institutions will act in good faith to implement diversity goals. Through a critical discourse analysis of policy discourse from the Texas legislature regarding 2009 changes to the Texas Top Ten Percent Plan, findings suggest that there may be less emphasis on accountability for institutional diversification through external policy like affirmative action. Instead, policy focuses on individual institutional diversity efforts. Using Critical Race Theory (CRT) as a theoretical framework, our findings maintain that as interest convergence changes (as the power elite no longer see current admissions policy benefiting them), there may be stronger arguments for internal accountability for diversity, leaving diversity efforts up to the people within individual institutions. Implications for institutional accountability are further discussed.

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