Does stereotype threat affect test performance of minorities and women? A meta-analysis of experimental evidence

This paper reports a meta-analysis (a statistical examination of data from multiple studies) assessing the impact of stereotype threat on test performance in racial minorities and women. Although the meta-analysis showed that both minorities and women were susceptible to stereotype threat, decrements in performance on difficult tests were larger for minorities than for women. For minorities, stereotype threat effects were largest when cues signaling stereotype threat were moderately explicit, whereas women performed most poorly when gender was subtly highlighted. Women who were moderately identified with a domain such as mathematics were most susceptible to performance decrements under stereotype threat, and effects for highly-identified women were weaker but significant. These results show that stereotype threat effects are reliable, but also moderated by several factors.

Nguyen, H.-H. D., & Ryan, A. M. (2008). Does stereotype threat affect test performance of minorities and women? A meta-analysis of experimental evidence. Journal of Applied Psychology, 93, 1314-1334.

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