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PSYC12H3 (294)
Chapter 1

Stereotype Threat ; Chapter 1.docx

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Michael Inzlicht

Chapter 1 • ST most widely studies social psych concept • Seeks to identify how factors in immediate performance situation contribute to appearance of systematic differences in ability • Most recent statistics show blacks and latinos trail whites in standardized measure of reading an math at all age levels - Achievement gap has narrowed but the race gap not changed in significant way in 90s • Data reveals some similarities in gender gap in math and science achievement and engagement - Gap is narrow in high school but grows in university entrance tests - Women remain minority in field of science, technology and math • Explanations for achievement gap typically invoke nature or nurture - The book the bell curve suggested that blacks and latinos do worse b/c they’re genetically predisposition w/inferior intelligence - Similar suggestions attempt to explain women’s under representation in math and science - On the nurture side the view is that racial, ethnic religious minorities and women are products of sociocultural environ that impede their development of necessary skills for success - Cultural and socialization pressures may also contribute to gap (ie mother encouraging son in math/science despite daughter demonstrating as much skill in domain as son) • Though explanations differ on continuum they share the assumption that majority of pop due to race, gender or ethnicity lacks potential to achieve academic and career success to same degree as whites - Explanations also assume that scores of standardized tests are a valid unbiased indicator of one’s true ability • Theory of ST assumes that even culturally fair and valid measures can be subject to variables that impair performance for some and not others - Something prevents marginalized groups from reaching full potential; something is social stereotypes - mere existence of stereotypes asserting intellectual inferiority of marginalized groups creates threatening intellectual environ for stigmatized individuals • ST: situational predicament in which individuals are at risk by dint of their actions or behaviors of confirming stereotypes about their group - Sense that 1 might be judged in terms of a negative stereotype that’s in t
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