Prejudice Reduction in White Students: Comparing Three Conceptual Approaches

  • Blincoe S
  • Harris M
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Schools and businesses increasingly use prejudice-reduction interventions, which typ- ically emphasize 1 of 3 concepts: cooperation, political tolerance, or respect. This study serves as an initial laboratory investigation of the relative effectiveness of these 3 concepts, as compared with a control concept (intelligence), for reducing prejudice. Participants read a paragraph designed to prime 1 of the 3 prejudice reduction concepts or the control. Two self-report inventories (Social Dominance Orientation Scale and the Modern Racism Scale) and 2 implicit measures (a budget survey and the Race Implicit Association Test) were used to assess levels of racism and in-group preference. Participants in the cooperation condition scored significantly lower on the Race Implicit Association Test than those in the control condition, suggesting that control participants had a relatively stronger automatic preference for Whites. A significant effect of prime was also found on the Modern Racism Scale; participants in the respect condition had the lowest scores, indicative of relatively lower levels of prejudice toward African Americans. Males emerged as more biased than females on 3 of the 4 dependent measures. Implications for designing multicultural education programs are discussed.

Author-supplied keywords

  • cooperation
  • multicultural education
  • political tolerance
  • prejudice
  • respect

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  • Sarai Blincoe

  • Monica J. Harris

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