The impact of self-selection and reference group identification in a university living-learning center

Ronald J. Fisher1, John J. Andrews1
1University of Guelph, Canada
Cite this article:  Fisher, R., & Andrews, J. (1976). The impact of self-selection and reference group identification in a university living-learning center. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 4, 209-218.

Volume 4 Issue 2 | e132 | Published: August 1976 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.1976.4.2.209

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A coeducational living-learning center for the arts was studied through participant observation and quantitative assessment. Residents who had self-selected into the center exhibited higher aesthetic interests and greater satisfaction than members who were assigned by their location preferences. Members who perceived the membership group as a positive reference group exhibited higher aesthetic interests, lower religious interests, greater satisfaction, and less traditional academic behavior than members who saw it as a negative reference group. The results document the importance of full self-selection into a membership group and demonstrate the relationships between reference group identification, basic interests in personality, and social behavior.
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