Mitigating the Spread of COVID-19: Differential Perceptions of Midwestern University Students : Family & Community Health

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Mitigating the Spread of COVID-19

Differential Perceptions of Midwestern University Students

Myroniuk, Tyler W. PhD; Lewis, Kaleea R. PhD; Hermsen, Joan M. PhD; Schatz, Enid PhD

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Family & Community Health 46(3):p 203-208, July/September 2023. | DOI: 10.1097/FCH.0000000000000354


Racially minoritized groups have disproportionately borne the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic in America. We draw on Public Health Critical Race Praxis to investigate racial differences in college students' attitudes about mitigation efforts to limit the spread of COVID-19 and concerns about one's own and others' actions in these efforts. We used survey data from a random sample of Midwestern undergraduates (n = 620) who participated in a fall 2020 COVID-19 study; chi-square tests and logistic regression modeling were employed. Students of color were more likely than white students to report mitigation strategies as not sufficiently restrictive and that communities ought to prioritize limiting the spread of COVID-19. Students of color were also more likely to be concerned that the actions of others were spreading COVID-19. Universities need to continuously ask how their policies and practices acknowledge the broader racial context and seek the perspectives of diverse students.

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