Low Socioeconomic Backgrounds

Croizet, Jean-Claude. , and Theresa Claire. “Extending the Concept of Stereotype Threat to the Social class: The Intellectual Underperformance of Students From Low Socioeconomic Backgrounds. ” Personality and Social Psychology. Volume: 24 Issue: 6 Pages: 588-594 JUN 1998. web. 9 Sept. 2011. http://psp. sagepub. com/content/24/6/588. full. pdf+html In this psychology journal article Croizet and Claire talk about the effects of social background on intellectual tasks such as test taking. The social class that is studied in this experiment is the low income class.

It has been documented before that members of the higher class have tested higher on average than the lower class. Croizet and Claire wanted to find out what exactly causes this difference in test scores between the two classes. First possible reason behind the dramatic difference in academic achievements that was explored was resources between the two classes. Students with higher class parents would have more resources such as books and tutors, also having enough food for adequate sustenance. This could show an effect in performance but it was not the main contributor.

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Another explanation was societies expectations of certain groups. These being stereotypes that we have come to know throughout generations. We have come to know that wealthier students tend to do better and get further ahead in life than students from a poor family. Croizet and Claire shared a study about the treatment of poor students in the classroom. The poor students were treated badly causing negative effects in classroom performance. Again this did show an effect in performance but was not the main reason.

The final possible reason and the one Croizet and Claire test is influence of awareness of a stereotype. They explore the effects of a person when they know of their stereotype and base questions in a test that subtly bring these stereotypes up. The study tested students with 2 different tests. One that brought out a stereotype and another that was worded different to show no stereotype. In the study it showed a self-threating effect from the tests in the stereotype present test. Something as simple as the wording of questions showed a dramatic difference in test scores. This proved that a tereotype can subconsciously effect people in a negative way when it comes to intelligence testing. 1. What major issues is the journal article attempting to address? What questions does it hope to answer? The major issue this journal addresses is how stereotypes negatively effects a person academic scoring. By wording a test that will bring up a known stereotype it can cause a person to act like out the stereotype. The true intelligence of a person might never be seen or the person might never get the chance to reach the level he or she could achieve because of something as simple as the wording of tests.

The answer was that stereotypes negatively affected lower class students, by self-harming themselves during test taking and this was proven. 2. In your opinion, is your journal article and experimental article, a correlation study, a case study, a naturalistic observation study, or something else? I believe this article was an experimental article. Croizet and Claire had the hypothesis “Students from poor families perform worse on intellectual tasks than do other students” The experiment concluded and went along with their hypothesis 3. What types of varables (independent and dependent) were being studied in your journal article?

Explain in detail. The independent variables were the low and high income household students. Two different test were handed out to the students with the wording slightly different in the two. One test brought out a well know stereotype and the other test did not. Both low and high income household students were given both tests. 4. What types of participants (humans, rats, ect. ) were being studied? Describe in detail the population being studied (age range, gender, ethnicity, etc. ) The subjects being tested were 298 undergraduates in France. 45 students were classified who was classified as neither low of high income, 3 ethnic minority groups, and all North Africans were excluded from the analyses. In the end it was 128 native French speaking students that made fit the conditions for the experiment. 5. What statistics (if any) used to analyze data in the study? Describe the results in your own words. When it came to reading the statistics I had a very difficult time, but fortunately graphs were presented in the article. The diagnostic (stereotype wording test) students from low income families solved 9 questions while the high income students solved 11.

In the non-diagnostic (no stereotype present) test students from a low income family solved 11 questions while the high income students solved fewer with 10. The numbers of ideas attempted in the diagnostic by the low income students was a little under 19 and the number solved by the high income students was 20. In the non-diagnostic test low income students attempted a little over 20 while the high income students attempted a little under 20. 6. What were the major conclusions drawn by the author in the discussion section of the article?

They concluded that because of stereotypes about social class, students from low income families are subjected to doubts about their intellect that influence there testing scores. This was shown when the test was presented as a measure of their verbal intellectual ability. Students with low income households performed poorly but when the test was not labeled as a test of verbal intellectual ability the low income students performed scored just as high as higher income students. 7. In your own words what did you learn from reading and analyzing this journal article? I really enjoyed this article.

I learned how a stereotype can affect a person’s intellect on the academic level. These students were just as smart as the students from richer families but something as simple as a stereotype that has been around a lot longer than they have been alive affected the way they took the test. It makes me wonder how many people have not reached higher avenues in life because of this. I believe the wording in not only tests but also in homework and anything that has to do with schooling should be looked into and have wording that brings up a stereotype should be changed.

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