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When you take an Implicit Association Test (IAT), it tests those unconscious prejudices. There are many different tests in order to see prejudices towards many different things, (gender, religion, race, age, etc) . In the case of the picture below, the results found people preferred white to black. The first time I took the test I was told I have a moderate automatic preference for Black people compared to White people. The second time I took the test I was told I have little to no automatic preference between Black and White people.


In my own personal opinion, I feel it mostly comes from mistakes made by over thinking things. The instructions of the test is to go as fast as possible and that if you go slow, your results will not be able to be configured. During the majority of the test, I found myself struggling to click the correct side. By this I mean that when the descriptive words "good"/"African-American" were on the left and "bad"/"European-American" on the right, I got used to it at the end but then they switched, screwing up my clicking the next round. I also found that after I messed up the first couple times I would start over thinking what I was doing and question the wrong thing. Finally, my friend took the test as I did and he found that he was similar to the 27% range for strong automatic preference for white people. While, I find this to be true of his characteristics, we spoke about the test and realized he felt more pictures of white people appeared while on my test, I found there to be more black people. Due to all of these added factors and the fact I got two different results, I question how legitimate this test is. Take the test and tell me what you think.


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I think there is no test that can tell you if you have a preference for different races, accurately that is. I believe that there will be some sort of racism or prejudice in everyone from a different race, whether you realize it or not. To test it is absurd and just keeps the idea for racism and such alive because the stereotypes that will always exist about different races will always exist, which will form an image, probably a negative one, that will always be present. It depends how this image is taken in the eye of the beholder that determines how racist one is.

Regardless of what a test tells you or does not tell you, it is nearly impossible to live in today's society without having some kind of stereotype or prejudice against races other than your own. We often do not act on these prejudices, but anytime someone of a different race does something that is stereotypical, we often think in our heads "not surprised" or something like that. Maybe one day we will not have these stereotypes anymore, but it is often difficult. I recognize that it is horrible and I never act on them; I have very many close friends of different ethnicities, but it can be difficult. Maybe this is because I grew up in St. Louis, MO, a very segregated city with many prejudiced people, but I think this is probably true for many.

Creative looking post Kimberlea. The IAT is a great tool for measuring some of the biases we may have toward certain groups that go deeper than what we might say in public or on a self-report survey. The results don't really mean that much at the individual level but these tests have been done on thousands of people over the years and the results tend to confirm that we associate good things with certain groups like whites or the young and associate bad things with certain other groups like blacks and the elderly.

You might want to take the IAT a couple more times to get used to the procedures and instructions. Even with practice though, you will likely discover that these implicit biases tend to remain.

I do not believe a test can determine if someone is racist or not. The only way I believe one can tell is by observing someone in their day to day interactions with people of a different race. Racism is something that is passed down I believe from ones parents and has a lot to deal with how parents talk about other races when a child is growing up. The fact that someone thinks a test can tell you are racist is beyond belief to me.

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This page contains a single entry by stone603 published on April 22, 2012 9:15 PM.

Please keep your distance was the previous entry in this blog.

Combating Prejudice is the next entry in this blog.

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