Date of Award

Spring 2020

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Educational Foundations & Leadership


Higher Education

Committee Director

Christopher Glass

Committee Member

David Ayers

Committee Member

Cherng-Jyh Yen


The Higher Education Act (HEA) Title V is designed to expand opportunities, increase attainment, and enhance institutional quality and stability of Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs). The assessment of Title V goals relies on enrollment, retention, and graduation rates which reflect organizational outcomes that policymakers prioritized without deference to student population, institutional mission, and funding levels. Title V policymakers do not currently consider the ways HSIs centralize the racialized experiences of students and institutions do not uniformly collect or report cultural outcome data despite its relevancy to Hispanic student success.

The purpose of this study was to draw on criteria identified in the qualitative literature to quantitatively investigate the Typology of HSI Organizational Identities (Garcia, 2017) as a policymaking tool. A TwoStep cluster analysis was used to determine how well the measured variables represent the conceptual typology constructs. A MANOVA determined the degree cultural outcomes further differentiated HSI clusters. To determine the extent to which institutions centralized the experiences of Hispanic students, a website review was used.

The results showed three distinct four-year sub-clusters and three distinct two-year sub-clusters with good silhouette measure of cohesion and separation scores. A statistically significant MANOVA in both sets of sub-clusters revealed, to small effect, that 17% of variance iii in cultural outcomes was explained by cluster assignment. Differences between clusters were detected in five of 15 cultural variables.

The findings of this study align with the Typology of Hispanic-Serving Institution Organizational Identities (Garcia, 2017); however, alignments could only be made after rubric-informed website reviews. The typology was limited in its practical use because it currently does not accommodate important sector differences. There is overwhelming evidence that two-year and four-year HSIs are significantly different from one another, thus may benefit from separate treatment in Title V. Current federal data prioritization and collection practices are insufficient to affirm an institution’s ability to serve Hispanic students, and opportunities exist for policymakers to remedy the neglect of cultural outcomes. Although interpretation of the findings is constrained by methodological limitations, the results may be used by policymakers, scholars, and HSI practitioners to tailor efforts designed to truly serve Hispanic students.