Costs vs. benefits
Modern Racism Scale
Positives: efficiency, explicit, subjective
Negatives: Social desirability, measurement error, demand effects not giving their true
responses not to look good, trying to figure out what the experimenter is looking for
Modern racism scale is not so explicit. Not asking how much you like the group, rather they
are asking about your thoughts regarding issues about blacks
However maybe the modern racism scale was not that different from the old fashioned
racism scale. Larger correlation.
Confounds prejudice with conservatism: political and racial attitudes, dimensionality.
People might quickly figure out that this scale measures racism,
Reactivity of the Modern Racism Scale:
White participants with high MRS scores
2 administration of MRS administered by black or white experimenter, MRS part of a
larger opinion survey. Responses are going to be entered into computer personally by the
white or black experimenter.
Results: both conditions have a decrease in prejudice levels when their responses are
entered personally, however the black experimenter condition have a larger decrease.
They went from prejudiced to low prejudiced! O.o
MRS is reactive.
Reaction Time Measures
Evaluative priming technique:
Priming task: face followed by adjective
Task 1: Learn faces: black or white
Task 2: judge balance of adjectives
Measurements: Facilitation scores = baseline – prime. Higher numbers means
The white participants were the most prejudiced and the least prejudiced ones
according to the MRS
Baseline is when the words are judged without any face.
Results Black participants: perceived a positive word faster when presented with a
black face than a white face. Perceived a negative word faster when presented with
a white face than a black face.
Results White participants: perceived a positive word faster when presented with a
white face than a black face. Perceived a negative word faster when presented with
a black face than a white face. MRS did not predict who would show the prejudice.
Alternative Prejudice Scale: Plant and Devine
Internal and external motivation to respond without prejudice
Internal motivation (IMS): it is personally important to be non-prejudiced toward
External Motivation (EMS): Social norms.
Plant and Devine quadrant:
1. Low in IMS and EMS: really prejudiced
2. High in IMs and EMS: low prejudiced.
3. High in IMS and low in EMS: low prejudiced.
4. Low in IMS and high in EMS: they will be prejudiced implicitly but depending
on situations, they might or might not show their prejudice.
Plant and Devine (1998):
Participants completed IMS/EMS in mass testing
In the lab: participants rated traits for descriptiveness of Blacks (given privately or
Prediction: who should show the greatest difference in ratings between public vs.
High external and low internal conditions would show the greatest difference
between private and public opinions.
Goal, driven desire, directionalattraction, influence behaviour
Theoretical Perspectives: the In-Group as a source of motivation
Social Identity Theory (Tajfel)
1. we are motivated to maintain a positive self-concept
2. Parts of our self-concepts are based on group memberships
3. In order to feel good about ourselves, we need to feel good about our groups.
Compare our in-groups favourably to ou