Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Social Psychology - Unit 1

1. Click on the link below and view the multimedia presentation. There is music if the sound on your computer works. If not, you can still view the presentation.
2. Read the instructions in the post linked below. (You need to complete as many online quizzes, activities and personal inventories as time allows.) Comment under this post, not in the post linked below. In your comment, focus on what you learned about yourself after participating in some of the online quizzes, personal inventories, activities, etc. Comments are worth 10 points - based on quality of response.
Go here (includes quizzes/activities from Teaching Tolerance):
Click here to find the Scientific American article on hidden bias:
Teaching Tolerance - Images in Action - go here:
Notes and Resources:
A "stereotype" is a generalization about a person or group of persons. We develop stereotypes when we are unable or unwilling to obtain all of the information we would need to make fair judgments about people or situations. In the absence of the "total picture," stereotypes in many cases allow us to "fill in the blanks." Our society often innocently creates and perpetuates stereotypes, but these stereotypes often lead to unfair discrimination and persecution when the stereotype is unfavorable.
A stereotype is a way we simplify our world. It is a short-hand way we deal with complex events. Stereotypes become dangerous when they leave us blind to individual differences.
(Discuss two studies: 5th and 6th grade students - rate classmates on a number of characteristics...peers from "upper class" families rated more positively on every desirable quality. 2nd study: Charles Bond Study- Treatment of Black and white patients at a psychiatric hospital run by white staff...2 most common methods of dealing with violent behavior - seclusion or restraining individual in straight jacket followed by sedative..harsher methods used against Black patients (4x more likely compared with white patients) despite the fact white and Black patients virtually identical with regard to number of violent incidents. Over time, as patients and staff grew more familiar, prejudice decreased.
Lessons, activities and information on stereotypes, prejudice, discrimination, racism and genocide:
In Class Activities:
Headband Activity (comment for extra credit)
Excellent article dealing with so-called "positive" stereotypes:
Prejudice: A negative or hostile attitude toward another social group
Discrimination: Refers to an unfavorable action, behavior, outcome or treatment
Threat to self-esteem
Exploitation Theory
Scapegoating Theory
Authoritarian Personality Theory
Less access to:
-approval and popularity
-rights and privileges
-power, knowledge and popularity
Exposure to social risks:
-victimization through violence
-suspicion and blame for crimes
-rejection, alienation and isolation, which contributes to low self esteem, self-hatred and self-destructive behavior
-economic exploitation and oppression
One of the worst effects of prejudice is SELF-FULFILLING PROPHESY
Examples in history have been:
* African-Americans being forced to ride in the back of the bus
* German Jews being required to wear a yellow "Star of David"
* minorities being referred to by pejorative slang names
* minorities being the subject of jokes which poke fun at the target's race, religion, or ethnic origin, and which rely on stereotypes
* Japanese-Americans being isolated in camps during World War II
* Native Americans having their land confiscated in violation of treaties, being the victims of government-sponsored massacres, and being placed on reservations.
(The Social Animal Table of Contents) Most of my lecture is based in information from Elliot Aronson's, The Social Animal
Brown Eyes/Blue Eyes:
Watch and discuss, "A Class Divided"
Racism of the past - overt
Racism today - subtle, hidden, difficult to combat
Examples of Modern Racism:
-Foreigners (People of color are perceived as not being American)
-Rightness of Whiteness (renaming Native American named lakes, lands, etc.)ethnocentrism - white/western norm/standard
Individual Racism
-Denial (Brown v. Board and cases like this, solved racial problems)
-Avoidance (white flight)
-Blaming the Victim (urban poor need to "get a job")
Institutional Racism
-Employment (word of mouth, seniority system)
Discuss the "Resume Study" University of Chicago/MIT
-Housing (steering, red-lining)
-Education (few minority teachers and professors, curriculum, affirmative action)
Assign "Racism in the English Language."
In class, brainstorm a list of words with "black" and "white" in them. After five minutes of brainstorming, form groups. In your groups, categorize words into three categories: Negative, Positive and Neutral. Read several dictionary definitions of "black" and "white." As a class, discuss brainstorming and categorizing activities.
White Privilege:
In class, complete the checklist and discuss.
Hate Crimes:
Bias motivated crime which the offender is motivated by a characteristic of the victim that identifies the victim as a member of some group toward which the offender feels animosity
Psychology and Racism:
Groups Fighting to End Discrimination:
Did You Know? (Thanks Zach for these!)
"Right Now" Van Halen
Psychology Syllabus (Issues of Discrimination, etc.):


Hamilton3 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Hamilton3 said...

Mrs. Hansen George,

Here are inks to two different versions of the same video. I was reminded of these when I watched the Miniature earth video, and wondered if you had seen these.



Lea Hansen-George said...

Thanks! Both links are great. The second link will fit perfectly in a media literacy or globalization unit!

sommer3 said...

the miniature earth slide was pretty depressing. it's nice to have them put it all in perspective for you. i think it makes you appreciate all your stuff more too. we've got it all good.

ckupsh3 said...

I took some of the quizzes you linked to. It's really easy to have biases that you don't know about--you can think that you're completely unbiased and still have natural inclinations towards one race or gender. I think it's really sad that society is okay with kids learning to naturally favor one sex or race over another. Obviously, no one has any biases at birth, which means that, somewhere along the line, they're getting ingrained into us. That just sucks.
Some of the quizzes were about money and jobs. It's amazing how, even though we're "equal", there's still such a huge gap between whites and blacks, and women and men. You'd think that everything would finally be equal, but obviously it's not. The quiz said way more black men are in prison than white men, and that men earn 26% more than women! How can it be that, after decades of trying to make society equal, equality only exists on the surface?

sommer3 said...

i took the quizzes on the economy mainly. i did know that the rich are the only ones getting richer and the poor are getting poorer. the way things works is still really messed up.. and i don't see it getting any better any time soon. you're basically doomed from the beginning unless you're born into a huge, rich family. that's sad but i think you just have to work hard and try to make it through.

Lea Hansen-George said...

Check out Zach's link at the bottom of the post. One of my former students, who now attends the U of M, told me he watched that video in one of his college courses.

Also, for all the kids gone today, don't forget posters are due. You will need to hang them in the hall first thing Tuesday, 3rd period. Since you had an extra day, I expect them to be spectacular!

noble said...

I watched the minature earth video and it really made me appreciate what i had alot more. I couldn't believe some of the things that they were saying, like the percents of how many people didn't have proper hygene and how many children didn't have a fresh water supply. It definitely showed me that i shouldn't take the things i have for granted

Campbell 3 said...

I watched the miniature earth video it opened my eyes to what this would is like and it made me sad. I know people that dont realize how much they have and they are complaining about it. People should be happy what they do have and maybe this world would change a little.
My mom always tells me she would want to take me to the poverty srticken countries to show me that I have so much to be happy for.
I also took some of the quizes and I just realized how much I dont know about other races and about life in general.

noble said...

after taking the test i found out that even though i dont feel that i am biased towards a certain race group i may have an unconcious biased towards a specific group.

Farrell said...

I took some of the quizzes and I was really surprised to learn how little people understood whats going on in our world. Its surprising that after all our efforts to make women equal to men and blacks equal to whites that there is still large differences in the world of jobs and education. There are so many stereotypes of blacks being less smart than whites and them giving themselves bad reputations as more of them are in jail. I think its really wrong that women are still having problems with getting the same opportunities as men, i think that we really should be given a chance to prove ourselves and get paid the same amount as men that are doing that job. The miniature earth slide really opens your eyes to the world better than if they had out the whole world on a scale, because the whole world is so large its harder to comprehend but when we shorten things and make it equivalent its so much easier to see that the world has a lot of problems that we don't see or know about... some people are so sheltered that they didn't even know that millions are people are starving because they cant find jobs.... i think that if we can spread information more about what is going on to kids then we have a better chance of changing all of this.

allbaugh3 said...

I took a few of the quizzes. They made me realize that a lot of people aren't prejudice, but still associate blacks with weapons and destruction. It showed me that whites and blacks aren't treated with equality, and in society blacks are looked down upon as destructive and dangerous.

ryan3 said...

The miniture world video was really kind of depressing. It shows how much we take for granted. I took some of the quizzes, and i learned more about me then i knew. I think our society has a lot to overcome, but at the same time, we've overcome a lot.

schneider3 said...

i liked taking the sorting quiz because it shows that people aren't always what you think, kind of like you shouldn't judge a book by its cover. i also liked taking the IAT quizzes, i didn't agree with all of them however. it's sad how many people are offended by blacks or scared of them.

mccauley3 said...

I watched the miniature earth movie and that is so true! When you think we have around 100 people in our class and you take 9 out who are disabled. It's hard to believe. The online quizes were very informative. It's unfair to see that the rich keep getting richer and the poor poorer but it makes sense. And the quiz where you had to sort the pictures by race i thought was going to be easy but i got almost all of them wrong. It actually is hard to pick someone out by looking at them. We aren't that different.

Beranek said...

I watched the miniature earth slide show and found it very depressing. I am very fortunate to have everything I have. I took some of the quizes and found out that I am not that skilled at looking at someone and identifying their ethnic group or race. I can't believe how racist this world is or how someone can judge another by their looks. There are so many stereotypes against blacks even after so long ago that slavery was abolished. Why can't people just keep their thoughts to themselves and not "spread" bad rumors and stuff.

Hamilton3 said...

The miniature earth was quite interesting, to see the world distilled down into numbers that made sense.

I also did the sorting activity and got a lot of them wrong. Goes to prove the old maxim: you can NEVER judge a book by its cover.

Some of the other quizzes I did were also interesting, and enjoyed the little "Hurricane" animation on the fron page.

gruber w said...

I think this thing is wrong!!! i dont think that im racist at all but the computer thinks i am :( oh well i guess it was just a test.

Lea Hansen-George said...

gruber....I don't think that was the point of the activity (to demonstrate if you are a racist or not). I think the point was to demonstrate the impossiiblity of judging someone's race simply by looking at them. Also, have you thought about why we do this?

Obviously we discuss this issue a lot in my Psychology class. We discuss the topic of sterotypes and how stereotypes (often based on someone's appearance) can lead to prejudice (negative/harmful attitudes and beliefs) which often leads to discrimination (negative/hostile actions). I guess that is the purpose behind "The Sorting Activity." We need to recognize that we do this...sometimes without realizing it. We often fall into the "rut" of sterotyping people based on appearance. We simply need to be aware we do this.

Do you want to comment a little more on this? Also, what other quizzes did you complete. Did you comment on them yet?