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Positive stereotype win the battle

May 5th, 2009

In a new study led by Robert J. Rydell, assistant professor in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at Indiana University, focused on women and math ability.

Was shown that when aware of both a negative and positive stereotype related to performance, women will identify more closely with the positive stereotype, avoiding the harmful impact the negative stereotype unwittingly can have on their performance. Stereotype threat — where just the awareness of a stereotype can influence performance regardless of actual ability — has been demonstrated in many domains, from driving cars to cooking. In academics, high-stakes tests, such as college entrance exams, often ask test-takers to select demographic information, such as gender and level of education, before beginning the test.

Also interesting moment what words not the only way for people to become aware of stereotype situation.

Rydell said people become aware of stereotypes in different ways. For women, simply sitting between two men while taking a math test can activate the negative gender stereotype.

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