Date of Thesis

2011

Thesis Type

Honors Thesis (Bucknell Access Only)

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Kim Daubman

Abstract

This study examined how ingroup status affects the tendency for people to internalize ingroup stereotypes (i.e. self-stereotype) when expecting to interact with another individual who holds stereotypic views of them. Past research has demonstrated that people self-stereotype when they want to affiliate with another individual who holds stereotypic views of them. By self-stereotyping, individuals create a common bond or shared set of beliefs with the other individual. This line of research has not yet examinedif there are any moderators in the relationship between affiliation motivation and self-stereotyping. However, there is reason to believe that members of lower-status groups are more likely to feel the need to create this common bond through self-stereotyping because 1) they identify more closely with their social group, 2) their group identity is more salient 3) they are more aware of the expectations of others, 4) and they care more about the quality of an interaction with a member from a higher-status group. For this experiment, I recruited twenty-seven members of Alpha Chi Omega andtwenty-eight members of Delta Gamma, two sororities that are perceived to be middle-ranked (as determined by a pre-test survey). Upon arriving to the study, half the participants were informed that they would be interacting with a member of Kappa Kappa Gamma, a higher-ranked sorority (as determined by a pre-test survey) and half the participants were informed that they would be interacting with a member of a Chi Omega, a lower-ranked sorority (as determined by a pre-test survey). Participants were also informed that this partner held stereotypic views of their (i.e. the participant’s)sorority. After, participants were given the Self-Stereotyping Measure in which they rated how well sixteen characteristics described themselves. The results of the series of analyses performed on participants’ ratings on the Self-Stereotyping Measure indicated that when expecting to interact with another individual, members of low-status groups self-stereotype more than members of high-statusgroups and those who do not expect to interact. Furthermore, unexpectedly, among members of high-status groups, those who expected to interact with a member of a low-status group self-stereotyped less than those who did not expect to interact. Thus, this research provides support for the hypothesis that group status is a moderator in the relationship between self-stereotyping and affiliation motivation.

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