Stereotype Threat

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This particular research article , written by Joshua Aronson, Carrie B. Fried, and Catherine Good, titled Reducing the Effects of Stereotype Threat on African American College Students by Shaping Theories of Intelligence (2002) focuses on the issue of academic underachievement among African American students as compared to their Caucasian peers. The research that has been conducted in this particular area suggests that the influence of negative stereotypes known as the “stereotype threat” plays a significant role in impeding the intellectual capabilities of African American students. The “stereotype threat” as described in the literature review of this article describes the anxiety that African American students face in schools about living…show more content…
Participants were required to release their grade and SAT transcripts. The pen pal conditions groups were randomly assigned to the malleable intelligence orientation or the control orientation. All laboratory sessions began the same way with the white female experimenter informing participants that she works for an organization called “Scholastic Pen Pals” and that the role of this organization is to set up one-time letter exchanges between “at risk” middle school students with college students. The motive of these letters the experimenter stated was to encourage younger students that they had to overcome struggles to achieve success as current college students. After having read the handwritten letters (letters were written by both girls and boys), participants were provided with parameters on how to respond. Participants in the malleable pen pal condition were asked to write a response to the student that encouraged hard work despite the appeared difficulties and that it would be helpful to include what research is currently disclosing about the expandability of human intelligence. Participants in this group were provided with information regarding intelligence as malleable and watched a short video clip supporting this idea. The control pen pal orientation offered a similar technique and disclosed to…show more content…
The questionnaires that participants completed were filled out using a 6-point scale (strongly-agree to strongly-disagree). Enjoyment for academics as well as importance of academics were measured on a 7-point scale (1=low, 7=high). Participants were also asked their opinions on pieces of past research regarding the stereotype threat. This measure also used a 7-point scale. Participants’ GPA was measured off of their official transcripts that were obtained from the registrar. There were a total of six measures that this study used to analyze the short-term and long-term effects of the utilized intervention. These included “short-term malleability beliefs, long-term malleability beliefs, enjoy academics, academics are important, perceived stereotype threat, spring quarter GPA” (Aronson et al,
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