SamplesAnalysisIndigenous Australians and ReconciliationBuy essay
← Demographic TransitionSocial Network →

Custom Indigenous Australians and Reconciliation Essay

Research Report on Attitudes towards Indigenous Australians and Reconciliation

This study explores factors that affect attitude and reconciliation in Australia. Specifically, the study analyses factors that lead to prejudice against Indigenous Australians. A measure to the reconciliation designed presented a snapshot of attitude of the Australians, which affected the reconciliation processes, providing a benchmark that measures how the attitudes change in future. Attitudes that regards to the indigenous people living in Australia does not provide a simple summary as it demonstrate a vast majority belief that the indigenous and other Australians relationship is important in the country. Despite the belief, a good percentage of Australians believe that the indigenous are specially placed in recognition as first Australians. To establish the factors that affect attitude and reconciliation, 382 participants, students from Australian University were selected. The sample population was subjected to fill the questionnaire in-order to collect the data. The study used various scale of measurement, such as, the eight-item scale developed by Halloran (2007). Attitudes towards Indigenous Australians (ATIA) were measured using 18-item scale developed by Pederson, Beven, Walker, and Griffiths (2004). Frequency and quality of contact with Indigenous Australians was assessed using six items adapted from the scale developed by Dixon, Durrheim, and Tredoux (2007).  After testing the data, the study established a positive correlation between reconciliation and collective guilt. The study also established variation in attitude across age. In the discussion, the study found out that the existence of prejudice against indigenous Australian is due to lack of collective guilty among Australians. Finally, the research observes that reconciliation efforts and adoption of positive attitude are tenets of upholding smooth interaction of people in Australia.  

This research explores behavioral patterns of Indigenous Australian in relation to other people in Australia. The research seeks to explore several key hypotheses to shed light on social interaction of Indigenous Australians. The hypothesis ascertains the influence of age difference on reconciliation efforts among individuals and the relationship of attitudes and contact group. Determination of the relationship of reconciliation and age is formed in the following hypothesis:

H0: Reconciliation activities in Australian favor the existence of cordial interaction among Indigenous individual in Australians.

H1: Reconciliation does not influence individual’s relations when it comes to interactions with Indigenous Australians.

The second hypothesis that the paper seeks to test relates to the relationship between reconciliation activities and age of individuals in Australia. This hypothesis is formulated as follows:

H3: Age cohort of various individual influences their attitudes towards Indigenous Australians.

H4: Age does not play any role in determination of attitudes of individuals in Australia.

The above hypothesis is pertinent in understanding of the historical prejudice in Australia. It seeks to clarify confusion resulting from efforts of various scholars because of divergent themes on multi-cultural diversity in Australia. Historically, the difference in cultural practices in Australia has significantly influenced individual’s co-existence because some groups feel undermined by other groups. This is the case with Indigenous Australian group, who feel themselves undermined by another group, commonly known as immigrants (Allbrook, 2001).

Ang, Brand, Noble, and Sternberg (2006) describe factors that lead to prejudice in Australia, which in its turn influences reconciliation efforts and individual attitudes towards a given group. Consequently, these factors impede effort of creating social and democratic society that observes justice and the rule of law. These factors include empathy, frequency of intergroup contact, collective guilty, sex, location, and other social demographic factors. Previous studies sought to shed light on the ability of these factors to influence the role of reconciliation and attitude by combining different sets of these factors. These studies, however, resulted into divergent themes. Research results thus complicated the research problem instead of providing answers to questions. However, this study will diverge a little bit by specifically targeting the attitude towards reconciliation in Australia.  Results of these findings provide a tenet in the formulation of appropriate policies that will correct misleading perception regarding the attitude of people towards Indigenous Australians (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2000).

Method

Participants and Procedure

The sample was made up of 382 participants, who were students attending Australian university. Students were asked to complete a 20-minute questionnaire as part of their course requirement. There were 303 females and 79 males in the sample. 75 participants were aged 18-24, 128 were aged 25-34, 115 were aged 35-44, 55 were aged 45-54, and 9 participants were aged 55-64. For the purposes of analysis, the latter two age groups were combined, thus making four age groups for comparison. Regarding location, 176 participants were located in city areas, 69 in coastal areas, and 137 in country areas.

Materials

Attitudes towards reconciliation (ATR) were measured using the eight-item scale developed by Halloran (2007). Participants were asked to indicate the extent they agreed or disagreed with a statement on a 5-point scale. The example of the statement is “Reconciliation is an important issue for all Australians”. Lower scores indicated more positive attitudes towards reconciliation. Two negatively worded items were reversely scored, then scale scores were reversed so that higher scores reflected more positive attitudes towards reconciliation. Scale reliability in the current study was α = .85. 

Attitudes towards Indigenous Australians (ATIA) were measured using 18-item scale developed by Pederson, Beven, Walker, and Griffiths (2004). This scale consisted of statements such as “Aborigines would be lost without White Australians in today’s society” and “Aboriginal people work just as hard as anyone else” (reversely scored). For each item, participants were asked to show whether they agreed or disagreed with a statement on a 7-point scale. Higher scores reflected attitudes that were more negative. Six negatively worded items were reversely scored and the scale reliability in the current study was α = .93 (Cohen, 2003).

Frequency and quality of contact with Indigenous Australians was assessed using six items adapted from the scale developed by Dixon, Durrheim, and Tredoux (2007). Two statements about frequency asked participants to indicate how many Indigenous people they knew as either acquaintances (item one) or as friends (item two) on a 5-point scale, where 1 = none and 5 = very many. These two items were examined independently in subsequent analyses.  Four items referring to quality of contact were rated on a 5-point scale, where 1 = strongly disagree and 5 = strongly agree, with higher scores representing higher quality contact.  The scale demonstrated good reliability α = .83 (Dunn & McDonald, 2001).

Collective guilt was measured using five-item scale adapted by Halloran (2007) from the original scale developed by Doosje, Branscombe, Spears, and Manstead (1998, cited in Halloran, 2007).  Five items were rated on a 7-point scale, where 1 = strongly disagree and 7 = strongly agree, with higher scores indicating higher levels of collective guilt.  The scale demonstrated good reliability in the current study (α = .86).
Empathy was assessed using 14 items used by Pederson et al. (2004), which was an adaptation of the Interpersonal Reactivity Index (Beven, 2002, cited in Pederson et al., 2004).  Participants were asked to indicate whether they agreed or disagreed on a 7-point scale. Items such as “I feel protective towards someone who needs help” and “Other people’s problems don’t upset me much” (reversely scored) that received higher scores indicated more empathy. Five negatively worded items were reversely scored and the scale reliability in the current study was α = .75.

Results

Analysis of the data showed the following results, which can help to test the two hypotheses. The data are presented in the form of a correlation table for analysis of relationship between variables. ANOVA table is included to investigate the existence of significance difference among variables. However, the table provides results necessary for the interpretation of hypotheses of the study.

The correlation table shows the following relationship between the variables in question. First, there is a positive statistically significant correlation (0.001) between reconciliation and collective guilt, empathy, and frequency of quality contact. On the other hand, attitude is negatively correlated with reconciliation at 0.01 significance level. Secondly, attitude is positively correlated with empathy at a significance level of 0.01. On the other hand, attitude negatively correlates with collective guilt and frequency of making quality contact.

In testing whether results exhibit significance variation in mean. This study relies on the results of one-way ANOVA to establish the existence of significant difference in reconciliation efforts and attitudes resulting from age difference. According to ANOVA analysis, there is homogeneity of variance in attitudes of the population (sig .894). This, therefore, allows making a comparison of variation of attitude among individuals in different age groups (Dunn, Forrest, Burnley, & McDonald, 2004).

Apparently, in the result, there is a significant difference in attitudes of individuals across age groups. Thus, it is fallacious to say that Australian community has a positive attitude towards Indigenous Australians. This is because the perception, both positive and negative, varies across age groups (Forrest & Dunn, 2006).

The multiple comparison tables shows that there is a significant difference in attitudes of individuals in 18-24 and 35-44 age cohort. Results also show significant difference in attitude of individuals in age groups 35-44 and 25-34. In addition, there is a significant difference in attitudes between the age groups of 18-21 and 45-64 years. This variation in attitudes across age groups explains the difference in perception towards the Indigenous Australians.

On the other hand, it is statistically impossible to compare differential in means of data that describes reconciliation efforts. This is because reconciliation effort as a variable exhibits heteroscedasticity properties. Therefore, this makes it impossible to tell the direction of variation in reconciliation effort among the population. However, other factors may explain variation in reconciliation efforts in Australia other than age differential. Therefore, further investigation on differential of reconciliation effort in Australia is essential to achieve complete awareness of underlying factors behind the negative treatment of Indigenous Australians (Jordan, 2000).

Discussion

Results presented above clarify the contention surrounding Attitudes toward Indigenous Australians and reconciliation, which support Klocker and Dunn (2003) idea of multiculturalism that has been regarded to be misleading patriotism. Klocker and Dunn (2003) found a positive relationship between attitude and reconciliation process. Societies with negative attitude towards a given group exhibits lack of reconciliation efforts.

Results contend to the assertion made in the previous studies (Lawrence & Dua, 2005). The study found a strong positive correlation between reconciliation and collective guilt. This seems to validate the assertion of various scholars that society, which embraces collective guilt, has a higher probability of initiating reconciliation in the community way of life. In Australian case, the existence of prejudice against Indigenous Australian originates from lack of collective guilt in the society. The behavior of white Australians supports the assertion of impediment in the reconciliation effort due to lack of collective guilt among individuals in the society (Maaka & Fleras, 2000).

Lack of fairness in treatment of Indigenous Australian is the root cause of increased effort to find a lasting solution to this problem. Results showed positive correlation between reconciliation and frequency of quality contact with Indigenous people. Thus, contending to Marr and Wilkinson (2003) contention. These results showed that absence of favorable reconciliation environment decreases frequency of quality contact with Indigenous Australians. Although, there is an indication of concerns to the reconciliation knowledge level and issues of the indigenous, it concentrated much on attitude. It is therefore that advisable for the study to be extended to the social surveys to reveal not only the attitude, but also the ignorance and racism of the wider Australian community. The results of this study confirm that there is a lack of reconciliation efforts by Australians towards developing a favorable environment to increase the frequency of close contact with Indigenous Australians. Therefore, existence of prejudice against Indigenous Australians mainly results from lack of reconciliation efforts in the society. Consequently, this has seen Indigenous Australians to languish in chains of barbaric experiences.

Concerning the hypothesis testing, the study confirmed the first hypothesis that stipulated reconciliation efforts favors frequency of quality interaction with Indigenous Australians. Results of the study showed positive relationship between reconciliatory efforts and existence of high frequency of quality contact with Indigenous Australians. Thus, the government can reduce level of discrimination among Indigenous Australians by investing in projects that increase social interaction of population without any fear of social grouping (Mellor, 2003).

The study provided an essential interpretation of the relationship between age variation and prevailing attitudes, which are a tenet to social interaction. The results proved significant variation among attitudes across age groups. Therefore, this study proved the null hypothesis (H3) that age cohort of various individual influences their attitudes towards Indigenous Australians (Miles, 1989).

However, the research results can be enhanced by using a combination of data collection instruments, such as interview schedules, focus groups, and observation. This will augment the research findings because it provides an opportunity to compare the result from different data instruments to determine the reliability of data. In addition, use of a combined data collection techniques will increase the volume of data obtained; thereby, enhancing the results collected. Therefore, in the future, researchers should consider employing other data collection instruments to obtain quality information.

In conclusion, reconciliation efforts and attitudes are the tenets of upholding smooth interaction of people in Australia. Australian Bureau of Statistics (2000) supports this idea. Therefore, Australian government should work towards creating favorable environment that would become a ground for formation of positive attitudes and effective reconciliation efforts.

Custom Indigenous Australians and Reconciliation Essay

Code: Sample20

Related essays

  1. Social Network
  2. Land Use and Financial Crisis
  3. Demographic Transition
  4. Financial Statement and Ethics
On your first order you will receive 15% discount
Order now PRICES from $12.99/page ×
Live chat