The Equity Scorecard: A Process for Building Institutional Capacity to Educate Young Men of Color

by Estela M. Bensimon; Frank Harris, III; Robin P. Bishop

Apr 1, 2010

This chapter in Changing Places: How Communities Will Improve the Health of Boys of Color presents the Equity Scorecard – a process of discovering and addressing institutional factors of inequality. Challenges faced by black and Latino men in higher education derive from the educational system, not just student behavior. Using an evidence-based and data-driven approach, educators can reform their practices to reduce equity gaps.
  • The gender gap in higher education is most pronounced among black students; only 56 black males attend for every 100 black females.
  • Hostile campus environments, disengagement in student activities, lack of support from faculty and peers, and the need to work part-time contribute to black males' lower success in higher education.
  • The Equity Scorecard process convenes "evidence teams," comprised of key actors in an institution who identify inequities in their institution and use data to determine their causes.
  • Causes of inequity are often case-specific and not obvious. For example, one college found that it had a disproportionately small number of black transfer students and addressed this by making improvements to its "transfer culture."
  • Numbers speak volumes in higher education; disaggregating outcome data by race and gender enables institutions to hold themselves accountable for serving their students equitably.