Stereotype Threat Theory And Its Effect On Society Essay

1820 Words Nov 20th, 2016 8 Pages
Is it possible that the way society sees a group can influence how that group performs on tests of intelligence? According to the Stereotype Threat Theory, it can. Stereotype Threat Theory “refers to the conscious or unconscious belief that one belongs to a group stereotypically known for specific performance deficits. The hypothesis is that these beliefs lead to suboptimal performance on tasks specific to the stereotype” (Stoet 94). Stereotype threat leads to a large gap between privileged, un-stereotyped groups and affected groups in society with regards to jobs, education, and social interactions. This gap comes from stereotyped groups feeling they need to act in the way society tells them to, creating societal “chains” on these groups, essentially an unstated law telling them what they can and cannot do. This is because stereotype threat causes groups to identify with what society provides their status to be Experiments show commonly stereotyped groups perform worse on intellectual tests they are told their group generally does bad on. Therefore, commonly stereotyped groups suffer from the stereotype threat on intellectual tests.
The planting of an idea in someone’s mind can lead to that idea blooming into reality. When someone is susceptible to being influenced by society’s standards, it shows in how they handle everyday activities. Davis hypothesized that if African American students were “race primed”, meaning they were told African Americans do not do well a certain…
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