The Effect of Exposure to Social Media Police Violence on the Academic Self-efficacy of African American Male College Students

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Jones, Simone
Washburn University
Department of Psychology
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In the United States, African American men have been stereotypically impacted by excessive rates of discrimination, poor mental health outcomes, and underachievement (Franklin & Boyd-Franklin, 2000). Historically, African Americans as a race, have endured one of the nation’s most profound tragedies (Boyd & Franklin, 2000). The recorded emergence of Chattel Slavery beginning in the mid-1770s has had an everlasting impact on the social structure of American society (Elligan & Utsey, 1999). African American men particularly, have been classified as a dysfunctional group of individuals by mainstream society. Unfavorable stereotypes have followed African American men as they have remained targets of racial profiling (Welch, 2007) and continuously obtain limited access to academic achievement (Stoops, 2004). It is of relevance that America gain greater insight into the psychological barriers faced by African American men pursuing academic success. The purpose of this study is to assess the impact exposure to police violence observed through social media, may have on the academic self-efficacy of African American male college students. It is hypothesized, that African American male college students exposed to posts of police violence may experience an increase in negative beliefs regarding their racial identity. Subsequent increases of exposure and negative self-perception may lend to decreases in confidence regarding a student’s ability to perform well in academic domains.