Study Finds Blacks With a College Education Are More Likely to Experience Racial Discrimination

According to a new survey from the Pew Research Center, Black men and African Americans with some college education are more likely than other African Americans to experience racial prejudice in certain situations.

The survey found that the majority of all African American respondents reported experiencing discrimination at some point in their life. However, this exposure to discrimination was more pronounced among African Americans with at least some college experience; 81 percent of this population reported experiencing discrimination because of their race, 17 percent reported regularly experiencing racism, and 57 percent believe that race negatively affects their ability to succeed. In comparison, 69 percent of Black people with a high school education or less say they have experienced racial discrimination, 9 percent report regularly experiencing racism, and 47 percent believe that race negatively affects their ability to success.

In comparison to their less educated peers, African Americans with at least some college education were also more likely to report experiencing certain racist behaviors such as encountering people acting suspicious around them, being treated as less intelligent, and being exposed to racial slurs or jokes.

Additionally, experiences with racial discrimination varied between genders; 59 percent of Black men reported being racially profiled by police officers compared to 31 percent of Black women. Black men were also more likely to say they have had people act suspicious of them and use racial slurs or jokes in their presence. However, some experiences of discrimination were equally prevalent among genders including unfair treatment in the workplace and fear for their own safety.

The full study, “For Black Americans, Experiences of Racial Discrimination Vary by Education Level, Gender,” may be accessed here.


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  1. Kayla Jackson says:

    I have often wondered if Black Americans who have some education experience more because they are educated? Where you may learn more about the oppressor and how the minorities have fought to earn certain civil rights. So is it safe to say that the only reason Black Americans with some education receive more racially biased incidents is because they have been more exposed to it in their studies? Does this also mean that those of us with little to no education do not recognize racism when it is happening?

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