Making Sense of...Affirmative Action in Higher Education

Launched in 2017, IDHE created short discussion guides, called "Making Sense of..."  These short pieces were meant 1) as a way to become quickly acquainted with an issue, 2) see what people are reading on the topic, and 3) as a way to begin a conversation, using some discussion framing questions.  These guides are meant for use by anyone, but in particular we encourage use by college faculty (in classrooms and in disciplinary clubs) and in co-curricular campus settings.

Now, in summer 2023, our team has redesigned these guides as a tool for educators and students.

This edition deals with an enormous issue, affirmative action in higher education. How does the recent Supreme Court decision affect how admissions works in higher ed? Who benefits, and what are the risks we face today? In this guide, we offer a starting point for readings and conversation. Please use this guide in and out of the classroom at your institution and share widely. If you have any questions or comments about this guide, please do reach out to our team at

Access the Guide: Making Sense of...Affirmative Action in Higher Education