Event Title

Investigating Racial Stereotypes for African American with a New Implicit Measure of Reading Comprehension

Location

CSU Ballroom

Start Date

9-4-2012 1:00 PM

End Date

9-4-2012 2:30 PM

Student's Major

Psychology

Student's College

Social and Behavioral Sciences

Mentor's Name

Karla Lassonde

Mentor's Department

Psychology

Mentor's College

Social and Behavioral Sciences

Description

This study aimed to recognize how important it is to establish separate implicit and explicit stereotype assessments. Although several investigations on stereotypes have been conducted in the field of psychology, many of the measures used were insensitive to social desirability strategies on the part of the participants. We believed racial bias could be more authentically examined within narrative text as reading comprehension involves automatic memory processes outside of the reader’s control. In the experiment, participants read 12 passages in which a target occupation was introduced but the race of the character holding the occupation was withheld until a series of sentences near the end of the passage. For example, when reading about a pilot, prior knowledge including racial stereotypes should become active in memory (e.g. it is more common for the pilot to be white than black). We recorded the time it took participants to read target sentences in which race was mentioned. Approximately a week later participants returned to complete an explicit measure of racism, the ASI-PAAQ(Katz & Hass, 1988) and the Marlow-Crowne (1960) which is a measure of social desirability. The results suggest that the reading task was effective in assessing implicit bias towards African Americans. Additionally, there was no relation between the results of the reading task and the explicit measure of racism. Implications regarding the differences found between the two types of measures will be discussed as well as the necessity to focus on measuring multiple aspects of racism.

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Apr 9th, 1:00 PM Apr 9th, 2:30 PM

Investigating Racial Stereotypes for African American with a New Implicit Measure of Reading Comprehension

CSU Ballroom

This study aimed to recognize how important it is to establish separate implicit and explicit stereotype assessments. Although several investigations on stereotypes have been conducted in the field of psychology, many of the measures used were insensitive to social desirability strategies on the part of the participants. We believed racial bias could be more authentically examined within narrative text as reading comprehension involves automatic memory processes outside of the reader’s control. In the experiment, participants read 12 passages in which a target occupation was introduced but the race of the character holding the occupation was withheld until a series of sentences near the end of the passage. For example, when reading about a pilot, prior knowledge including racial stereotypes should become active in memory (e.g. it is more common for the pilot to be white than black). We recorded the time it took participants to read target sentences in which race was mentioned. Approximately a week later participants returned to complete an explicit measure of racism, the ASI-PAAQ(Katz & Hass, 1988) and the Marlow-Crowne (1960) which is a measure of social desirability. The results suggest that the reading task was effective in assessing implicit bias towards African Americans. Additionally, there was no relation between the results of the reading task and the explicit measure of racism. Implications regarding the differences found between the two types of measures will be discussed as well as the necessity to focus on measuring multiple aspects of racism.

Recommended Citation

Claussen, Carrie and Megan Selberg. "Investigating Racial Stereotypes for African American with a New Implicit Measure of Reading Comprehension." Undergraduate Research Symposium, Mankato, MN, April 9, 2012.
http://cornerstone.lib.mnsu.edu/urs/2012/poster-session-B/47