Guide Stereotype Threat: Theory, Process, and Application

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Contents:
  1. STEREOTYPE THREAT AND EDUCATIONAL INEQUALITY
  2. Log in to Wiley Online Library
  3. Stereotype threat - Wikipedia
  4. Stereotype Threat

She is cool, collected, and confident—except when there are boys in the car. He is one of two males in a large class of over students. This can begin when something makes you aware of expectations or stereotypes about you or people like you. This raises the possibility that people will be likely to judge you negatively.

All you need do is say or do something vaguely consistent with the stereotype.

STEREOTYPE THREAT AND EDUCATIONAL INEQUALITY

Everyone can have this kind of experience because we all belong to groups that have certain images associated with them. For example, in the old days, women were discouraged from driving. In fact, there are still places today where people believe in this stereotype. For my female student, the presence of males in the car prompted her to think about the stereotype, which made her worry and lose focus.


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  • How Could This Happen!

Voila : stereotype confirmed. This is how stereotype threat works.

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Claude and I conducted a number of early experiments on this process, showing that we could temporarily raise or lower the intellectual performance of Stanford University undergraduates. We did so simply by getting them to think about an unflattering stereotype just prior to taking a difficult intelligence test. For example, in one experiment, just before taking a difficult verbal test, we had all of the students fill out a demographic survey.

But for half of these test takers, we included the question: what is your race? These students performed significantly worse than usual after being asked to report their race. For white students, the race question had no effect.

Stereotype threat - Wikipedia

In another study, we sought out the brightest math students on campus, which brought us to the engineering department. This time we lowered the math performance of a group of extremely accomplished white male engineering students. Just before the test we explained to half of them that our purpose in measuring their math intelligence was to see why Asian students are so gifted in math.

Another group took the same test but just thought we wanted to see how smart they were. But surplus motivation can often interfere with performance when focus is key. The opposing team calls a time out—to give you plenty of time to think about how big these shots are. Everyone is depending on you. Try not to think about what a poor free-throw shooter you are. Psychologists have shown over and again that for complex tasks —chess, brain surgery, IQ tests, and so on—extra motivation can be harmful.

We have found, for example, that just before an exam, if we remind students that the purpose of a test its not to measure them but to help them grow in math, we can boost the test scores of children taking a difficult test.

Stereotype Threat

Similarly, test takers who write a paragraph about their anxiety about the test also score significantly better. The act of putting the anxious thoughts into words on paper seems to clear them from the mind. So there is less distraction.

Stereotype Threat: How it affects us and what we can do about it.

Finally, learning about how stereotypical expectations can affect our performance can itself be beneficial. Online First, Feb 24, Social Psychological and Personality Science.

Schmader, T. Stereotype threat in school and work: Putting science into practice.


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    Retraining implicit attitudes and stereotypes to distinguish motivation from performance in a stereotype threatening domain. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology , 99,