Friendship preferences among German and Turkish preadolescents

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Jugert, Philipp ; Noack, Peter ; Rutland, Adam (2011)

This study examined changes in and predictors of preference for same-ethnic friendships amongst German (n = 106) and Turkish (n = 45) preadolescents during their first year in an ethnically heterogeneous school. Drawing on Allport’s (1954) contact hypothesis and related research it examined the relationship between children’s attitudes and their preference for same-ethnic friendship. Amongst both German and Turkish children the latter decreased over time and its variability was predicted by intergroup attitudes and peer norms about cross-ethnic friendships. Outgroup orientation and perceived contact conditions predicted only German children’s preference for same-ethnic friendships. Over time, classroom identification increasingly reduced preference for same-ethnic friendships amongst Turkish children. The results showed that inter-individual attitudes were related to children’s level of intergroup contact.
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