How Stereotypes Affect Us (And What We Can Do) - Deepstash
How Stereotypes Affect Us (And What We Can Do)

How Stereotypes Affect Us (And What We Can Do)

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How Stereotypes Affect Us (And What We Can Do)

How Stereotypes Affect Us (And What We Can Do)

Claude Steele paints a compelling picture, through personal stories and research results, of how simply being aware of negative stereotypes toward our social group diminishes our ability to perform. 

The threat of stigma is sufficient to have a significant deleterious effect on performance. According to Steele, this phenomenon, which he and his colleagues call stereotype threat, permeates American culture, particularly in schools and colleges. 


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The Stereotype Threat

The Stereotype Threat

Recent theory and research on the concept of stereotype threat suggests that reminders of a negative stereotype about racial identity can impede performance in a relevant domain. According to Steele and his colleagues , when a negative stereotype about a group becomes salient as a criterion for test evaluation, individual group members can become concerned about confirming the negative stereotype. The concern raised by the salience of the stereotype can subsequently cause individual group members to perform more poorly than they would in a neutral context.


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Overcoming The Stereotype Threat

Overcoming The Stereotype Threat

Steele shows how educators might overcome stereotype threat with practically implementable research findings, including:

  •  self-affirmation within grade school, 
  • multiracial group talks on college campuses, 
  • reinforcing that challenges are learnable and ability is not “fixed,” 
  •  altering methods by which critical feedback is provided.


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