A co-educational living-learning center for the arts was studied through participant observation and quantitative assessment. Residents who had selfselected into the center exhibited higher aesthetic interests and greater satisfaction than members who were assigned by their location
preferences. Members who perceived the membership group as a positive reference group exhibited higher aesthetic interests, lower religious interests, greater satisfaction, and less traditional academic behavior than members who saw it as a negative reference group. The results document the
importance of full self-selection into a membership group and demonstrate the relationships between reference group identification, basic interests in personality, and social behavior.