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Chapter 11

Social Psychology (Cdn Ed) Sanderson & Safdar Chapter 11

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Ashley Waggoner Denton

Chapter 11: Stereotype, Prejudice and Discrimination Examine factors that contribute to prejudice and discrimination and their consequences for minority groups -stereotype: a belief that associates a whole group of ppl with a certain trait -prejudice: hostile or negative feelings about ppl based on their membership in a certain group -discrimination: behavior directed against ppl solely bc of their membership in a particular group What Factors Contribute to Stereotyping and Prejudice? -research suggests who may engage in negative behavior when we feel bad about ourselves -e.g. participants who got negative feedback about their own intelligence rated a Jewish candidate personality more negatively than those who rated an Italian American women (the study was done at a school where there was negative stereotype for Jewish American women) • those who rated the Jewish woman more negatively had greater boost in self esteem following the experiment -explicit self esteem: measured in self reports; one’s evaluation of oneself that one has expressed about himself -implicit self esteem: one’s evaluation of oneself that exists largely outside of one’s awareness (measured by computer based reactions, etc.) • individuals who consciously feel positive about themselves (high explicit self esteem) but harbor self doubts and insecurities at less conscious levels (low implicit self esteem) behave more defensively (e.g. rationalizing decisions more) • Ss with high explicit self esteem but low implicit self esteem, when receive negative feedback on fake intelligence test, recommended harsher punishment for aboriginal student who started a fist fight • Therefore, receiving a blow to self esteem can lead to expression of prejudice, and expression of prejudice can boost one’s self esteem Social Learning -children often form attitudes about people in diff groups by watching their parents; if child hears negative attitudes about ppl who hold diff religious beliefs or see parent void interactions, the child more likely to form negative beliefs about ppl in this group -other ways of formation and maintenance of stereotypes: hearing someone express prejudiced attitudes, watching someone engage in discrimination, observing someone respond favorably to joke that involves stereotype -but, ppl are often willing to express certain types of prejudice but not others • E.g. ppl comfortable with expressing prejudice against KKK members but unlikely to feel comfortable expressing prejudice for other stigmatized groups like the blind • Ppl learn to avoid discriminating against those in the “not acceptable” category but show high level of prejudice toward ppl in groups that are socially acceptable to discriminate against -believing other ppl agree with our stereotypes increases the strength and accessibility of those stereotypes and makes them more resistant to change • Students high in prejudice that received info that their views were shared by others believed that greater % of Blacks possessed more negative traits and fewer positive traits than did those who learned their views weren’t shared by others; also influenced behavior like how close the white Ss sat beside black student • Another study: Students low in prejudice (assessed prior to study) in multicultural condition (read passage that emphasize value of multiculturalism) more likely to express warmth toward Aboriginal student than low prejudice students in control (no message) o High prejudice students in multicultural condition expressed less warmth than high prejudice students in control condition o Reading passage about multiculturalism increase the feeling of threat among those with high prejudice o Shows that ideological ideas like those in multicultural message should be tailored to individuals to increase effectiveness Social Categorization -social categorization: the practice of classifying ppl into in-groups or outgroups based on attributes that the person has in common with the in-group or outgroup (another factor that contributes to stereotyping) -this type of classification leads to outgroup homogeneity effect and in-group favoritism Outgroup Homogeneity Effect -ppl’s tendency to underestimate the variability of outgroup members compared to variability of in-group members -we have less familiarity with ppl in outgroup that those in in-group (greater familiarity with group leads to seeing greater differentiation and variability within the group) • Occurs early in life: babies 9 months old better at discriminating bw faces within their own ethnic group than those from other ethnic groups • But not born with this; it is learned: Korean children adopted by white French families bw ages of 3-9 better at recognizing White faces than Asian faces -cross-ethnic identification bias: the tendency to see outgroup members as looking very similar to one another and showing greater accuracy for recognizing in-group members than outgroup members • Ppl show greater accuracy in recognizing in-group members than out-group members • One explanation: ppl engage in deeper processing when seeing person from same ethnicity than someone from different • Leads to errors in eyewitness identification In-Group Favoritism -In-Group Favoritism: the tendency to evaluate one’s in-group more positive than outgroups • Jurors give shorter sentences to those in the same ethnic group as themselves who are accused of crimes -ppl not only judge in-group more favorably but also more confident in their judgment • Asked ppl of diff descent to rate intensity of emotional expression on photos and level of confidence in their rating; participants more confident in judging the emotional expression of faces that were members of their cultural in-group -in-group favoritism occurs even when groups are based on meaningless criteria e.g. number of dots ppl see in a picture, letters chosen at random from bag -factors that lead to in-group favoritism: • Self interest: motivated to favor those in our ingroup bc those ppl are more likely to favor us in return o This preference for ingroup is seen early in life (white 6 y/o show the same pro-white anti black bias on subtle tests as adults) • Favoritism more likely when ppl heavily identify with the group and when group norms are salient o Whites who strongly identify with their White identity less supportive of affirmative action than those who identify less strongly and think about how the policy will affect Blacks • Social Dominance Orientation: a personality trait that indivates preference to maintain hierarchy within and between groups o ppl high in social dominance orientation more likely to endorse in group favoritism Cognitive Biases -ppl often use shortcuts in thinking and these faulty problem solving strategies can lead to stereotyping and prejudice Illusory Correlation -Illusory Correlation: the tendency to overestimate the association between variables that are only slight or not at all related • ppl pay attention to things that are unique so ppl who are distinctive are more salient (stick out more) • behaviors committed by members of small groups or distinctive groups receive more attention and are more memorable than the same behaviors by members of common groups • Anne Frank says “What one Christian does is his own responsibility, what one Jew does is thrown back at all Jews” • Ppl see homosexuality and child molestation going together more frequently than they actually do, bc homosexuality and child molestation are distinctive behaviors (even though heterosexual men are statistically the most likely to abuse children) Ultimate Attribution Error ** difference between the fundamental attribution error? -Ultimate Attribution Error: people make dispositional attributions for negative behavior and situational attributions for positive behavior by outgroup members, yet show the reverse attributions for success and failures of their in group members • E.g. Black and White students both shows in group favoritism, judging the firing of Black or White person as caused by internal factors, like personality of intelligence for outgroup members but by external factors like situational pressures for ingroup members -these different attributions may be made so that they help us feel safe in often unpredictable world – “belief in a just world”; can feel that bad things won’t happen to use -these errors can lead to scapegoating and blaming the victim: • Ss rated the behavior of a woman friendly to a man at party; those who read that she had been raped by that man saw her behavior as inappropriate; those who didn’t read about rape saw it as appropriate Contrast Effect -ppl perceive stimuli that are different from expectations as more different than they actually are -e.g. when you belief that football plays are dumb, when you encounter one who gets an A, you may see him as even smarter than another student with same grade -Shifting Standards Model: a model that posits that ppl within a group are more often compared to others within that group rather than to people in other groups • E.g. woman may be described as exceptional athlete bc her skills are better than other women even if these skills are only average compared to men’s abilities • Therefore easier for minority group members to make minimum standards (due to shifting standards) but these positive evaluations based on lowered standards are be insulting • Minority group members must also work harder to prove that their performance is based on ability Perceptual Confirmation -Perceptual Confirmation: the tendency to see things in line with one’s expectations -explains why members of minority groups have to “jump through the hoops” • E.g. Student teachers systematically devalued the performance of students who they were led to belief were Aboriginal ancestry in comparison with non-Aboriginal counterparts even though student records were otherwise Identical (in Canada) -this effect occurs bc we interpret ambiguous information as supporting stereotypes and thereby see the same behavior in very different ways depending on our expectations • E.g. see pseudo patients’ behavior at mental hospital as abnormal, view other athletic teams as more unfairly aggressive than their own, underestimate 11-month-girl infant’s crawling ability and overestimate such behavior in boys • Participants had to rate a child’s ability; half told she was poor, half told she was rich; half watched her answer academic problems in inconsistentway; Ss who did not see her actual performance were reluctant to judge her ability on her socioeconomic status; but those who saw video of performance and thought she was poor rated her lower on work habits and skills than those who thought she was rich o Stereotypes made participants use irrelevant information to interpret behavior -we require fewer examples to confirm our beliefs about a trait that is highly stereotypical of a person in a given outgroup than for person in our in-group Confirmation Bias -confirmation bias: the tendency to search for information that supports one’s initial view -when ppl have expectations about person, they ask few questions to person and hence acquire little information that could disprove assumptions -we ignore information that disputes our expectations • More likely to remember and repeat stereotype-consistent information and to forget or ignore stereotype-inconsistent information (one way stereotypes are maintained even in the face of disconfirming evidence) -ppl who are unprejudiced pay more attention to stereotype-disconfirming information than stereotype- confirming information • Ss who were unprejudiced (assessed before study), most chose to receive more information about stereotype-disconfirming person (had to select one person in a group of descriptions) to learn more about; most prejudiced Ss chose to receive more information about person who was stereotype- confirming (e.g. Black person uneducated and has menial job) -ppl who are unprejudiced make different attributions for behavior: stereotype-confirming behavior as situational rather than internal and stereotype-disconfirming behavior as dispositional Research Focus on Gender: The Development of Gender Stereotypes -children show signs of gender stereotyping as young as 3 years old (e.g. making judgments about another child’s toy, color of her dress etc.) -by age 4, children show strong gender stereotypes -gender stereotypes limit achievement expectations for both girls and boys • Even among gifted students, boys show higher aspirations in their career choice than girls • Young women anticipated more potential work-family conflict than young men do -when gender stereotypes and socialization become weaker, both genders benefit as boys and girls learn to base occupational ambition on their talents and less on their gender roles Assessing Prejudice Self-Report Measures -examples include Modern Racism Scale, Modern Sexism Scale, Homosexuality Attitudes Scale -people may deliberately misreport their answers to appear more aaccepting Covert Measures -indirect measures of assessing beliefs and behaviors -Bogus Pipeline: fake lie detector test; participants are told that it asses their true beliefs by detecting any false information; participants are more likely to give honest responses to avoid discomfort of being caught in lie -Implicit Association Test (IAT): based on the assumption that it’s easier and therefore faster to make the same response to concepts that are strongly associated with each other than to concepts that are weakly associated • Assumed that quick response indicates that two concepts are related in an individual (e.g. “fat” and “bad” typically paired faster than “thin” and “bad”) What are the Consequences of Stereotyping, Prejudice and Discrimination? -women who watched gender stereotypic commercials performed worse on subsequent math test than those who had watched counter-stereotypic commercials Self-Fulfilling Prophecy -self-fulfilling prophecy (behavioral confirmation): the tendency to seek, interpret and create information that verifies our own beliefs -ppl’s expectations lead them to see things in line with their beliefs (perceptual confirmation) but also to interact with a person in ways that elicit expected behaviors -e.g. researchers trained students to interview job applicants using the styles shown by those previously who had interviewed Whites vs Blacks • The students then interviewed White applicants; the white applicants who were interviewed by someone using the style used with Black applicants in first part of study performed worse than those who were interviewed in the “white” style (sat further away from interviewer, made more speech errors, seen as less calm and composed etc.) -people who expect acceptance have tendency to be warmer toward person of interest, which can leads to acceptance; ppl who expect rejection have tendency to be cold or withdrawn, in turn leading to less acceptance • Females students reviewed videos of males interacting with females; the male students in the experimental condition (who were told that the female was not critical of other people) were viewed as showing greater “warmth” in their interactions than the control group Stereotype Threat -stereotype threat: the fear that one’s behavior may confirm an existing cultural stereotype, which then disrupts one’s performance **is this only applicable to culture? -e.g. study randomly assigned Black and White Stanford students to do SAT test; Blacks did just as well as Whites when told the test was non-diagnostic, but did worse than Whites when told that test was diagnostic • Shows that when minorities are in threatening environment, their performance tends to weaken -stereotype threat also shown for: • High school and uni females taking math tests described as diagnostic for math ability • White males who take math test after comparing their math ability to Asian males • Latino men & women who take math test described as diagnostic • Children from low SES backgrounds who take intellectual tests described as diagnostic -study shows that identity salience impacts performance: • Students whose female identity was made salient to them (primed) performed worse on math test than control; female students whose Asianidentity was made salient performed better than control (primed by writing an aspect of their identity, female or Asian) -simply being the only person of your gender or ethnicity in group can activate stereotype threat and disrupt performance • Female participants tend to perform worse on math test when in minority position (one female, two males in group) compared to when in non minority position (three females in group) -one explanation: that stereotype threat leads to lower working memory capacity (Latino students who were told that memory test is highly predictive of intelligence recalled fewer words on test than those not given this info) -another explanation: this threat increases anxiety which in turn decreases performance -research shows that women who are solving math problems show activation in brain that control mental math tasks but those who are under conditions of threat instead show activation in brain that controls emotions Education Connections: Reducing the Effects of Stereotype Threat in the Classroom -half of uni students are women but women perceived to be unequal to men in ability to use math skills -according to stereotype threat research, gender-based math differences are more likely due to differences in gender role socialization • In study, found that when women were told that no gender difference existed on a test in the past, they performed as well as men o Women underperformed when they were presented w evidence that either stated or didn’t mention a gender bias o When the gender stereotype was nullified, the performan
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