Stereotype Threat: Theory, Process, and Application (with Toni Schmader)
The 21st century has brought with it unparalleled levels of diversity in the classroom and the workforce. It is now common to see in elementary school, high school, and university classrooms, not to mention boardrooms and factory floors, a mixture of ethnicities, races, genders, and religious affiliations. But these changes in academic and economic opportunities have not directly translated into an elimination of group disparities in academic performance, career opportunities, and levels of advancement. Standard explanations for these disparities, which are vehemently debated in the scientific community and popular press, range from the view that women and minorities are genetically endowed with inferior abilities to the view that members of these demographic groups are products of environments that frustrate the development of the skills needed for success. Although these explanations differ along a continuum of nature vs. nurture, they share in common a presumption that a large chunk of our population lacks the potential to achieve academic and career success.
In contrast to intractable factors like biology or upbringing, the research summarized in this book suggests that factors in one's immediate situation play a critical yet underappreciated role in temporarily suppressing the intellectual performance of women and minorities, creating an illusion of group differences in ability. Research conducted over the course of the last fifteen years suggests the mere existence of cultural stereotypes that assert the intellectual inferiority of these groups creates a threatening intellectual environment for stigmatized individuals—a climate where anything they say or do is interpreted through the lens of low expectations. This stereotype threat can ultimately interfere with intellectual functioning and academic engagement, setting the stage for later differences in educational attainment, career choice, and job advancement.
Social Neuroscience: Biological Approaches to Social Psychology (with Eddie Harmon-Jones)
Social Neuroscience provides an updated and critically important survey of contemporary social neuroscience research. In response to recent advances in the field, this book speaks to the various ways that basic biological functions shape and underlie social behavior. The book also shows how an understanding of neuroscience, physiology, genetics, and endocrinology can foster a fuller, more consilient understanding of social behavior and of the person. These collected chapters cover traditional and contemporary social psychology topics that have received conceptual and empirical attention from social neuroscience approaches. While the focus of the chapters is demonstrating how social neuroscience methods contribute to understanding social psychological topics, they also cover a wide range of social neuroscience methods, including hormones, functional magnetic resonance imaging, electroencephalography, event-related brain potentials, cardiovascular responses, and genetics.
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In the last decade, behavioral scientists concluded that their field had taken a wrong turn. Efforts to root out false findings and bad practices spurred a crisis now poised to transform the landscape of psychology. Psychology Today profiles four scientists who are leading the charge.
"[Pre-registration] is really gratifying. It's frustrating, too, because you realize how hard science is," Michael Inzlicht says. "There are a lot of null results out there. I've got a lot of bad ideas, it turns out. But because I want the results I publish to lean toward the truth, I'm happy with that."
The Independent covers a new paper from the lab examining empathy's intrinsic costs. Our study suggests that people avoid feeling empathy because they think it requires too much mental effort. Defined as the ability to understand the feelings of another person, empathy can facilitate positive social or helpful behaviours in an individual. However, our research suggests that people often don’t want to feel empathy, even if the feelings it produces are positive.
This is the greatest mystery of my adult life: How can I spend all day typing at a computer and go home feeling exhausted? How could merely activating the small muscles of my fingers leave me craving the couch at the end of the day? This question actually lies very close to one of the more hotly contested issues in psychology: What causes mental fatigue? Why is desk work so depleting? “It is kind of a mystery, to be honest,” says Michael Inzlicht, a University of Toronto psychologist who studies self-control, motivation, and fatigue.
- Joshua Aronson, New York University
- Avi Ben-Zeev, San Francisco State University
- Elliot Berkman, University of Oregon
- Kirk Brown, Virginia Commonwealth University
- Daryl Cameron, Penn State University
- Belle Derks, Utrecht University
- Jennifer Gutsell, Brandeis University
- Greg Hajcak, Florida State University
- Eddie Harmon-Jones, University of New South Wales
- Jacob Hirsh, University of Toronto
- Cendri Hutcherson, University of Toronto
- Sonia Kang, University of Toronto
- Michael Larson, Brigham Young University
- Lisa Legault, Clarkson University
- Ian McGregor, University of Waterloo
- Marina Milyavskaya, Carleton University
- Sukhvinder Obhi, McMaster University
- Liz Page-Gould, University of Toronto
- Travis Proulx, Cardiff University
- Blair Saunders, University of Dundee
- Brandon Schmeichel, Texas A&M University
- Zindel Segal, University of Toronto
- Alexa Tullett, University of Alabama
University of Toronto
- Association for Psychological Science
- Canadian Psychological Association
- Canada Foundation for Innovation
- International Social Cognition Network
- International Society for Research on Emotion
- National Academy of Education
- Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada
- Social and Affective Neuroscience Society
- Social Psychology Network
- Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council
- Society for Personality and Social Psychology
- Society for Psychophysiological Research
- Spencer Foundation