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Psi Chi Journal Special Issue 2019


Volume 24.2 | Education, Research, and Practice for a Diverse World
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Checking Progress Toward a More Diverse, Just, and Sustainable Psychology

Jon Grahe, Pacific Lutheran University

ABSTRACT: I introduce this special issue, “Education, Research, and Practice for a Diverse World,” by sharing a perspective regarding evaluating research and/or institutions through the consideration of diversity, justice, and sustainability (DJS). As part of this process, I employ a series of metaphors that help conceptualize each construct individually, but also how they relate to each other. Finally, by situating this special issue among other similar attempts, I highlight the important work that these authors are attempting while celebrating the Psi Chi Journal’s foray into this challenging and critical research areas in a timely manner.

KEYWORDS: Diversity, Justice, Sustainability, DJS, Social Justice

/ / / Psychology’s Hidden Figures: Undergraduate Psychology Majors’ (In)Ability to Recognize Our Diverse Pioneers

Leslie D. Cramblet Alvarez*, Adams State University; K. Nicole Jones*, Colorado Mesa University; Chelsea Walljasper-Schuyler, Marissa Trujillo, Mikayla A. Weiser, Jerome L. Rodriguez, Rachael L. Ringler, and Jonah L. Leach, Adams State University

ABSTRACT: Psychology as a science professes a dedication to diversity in many forms including celebrating diverse perspectives and people. Nevertheless, women and people of color, both historically and currently, face barriers to their advancement in the field. Illustrative of one of the challenges that women and psychologists of color face, undergraduate students know very little about psychology’s diverse historical roots including eminent pioneers who are women and people of color. Junior and senior psychology majors completed a name recognition task which included 42 pioneers in psychology, 21 of who were women, and 9 who were people of color. Participants recognized eminent women and people of color at significantly lower rates as compared to White, male pioneers (z = -12.95, p < .001, r = -.82; z = -10.62, p < .001, r = -.68, respectively). Having completed a History of Psychology course increased participants’ ability to recognize pioneers (U = 738.00, z = -3.79, p < .001, r = -.38) but primarily benefited White, male pioneers. Because psychology majors, professionals, and practitioners are an increasingly diverse group, implications for the psychology curriculum and minoritized students are discussed.

KEYWORDS: History of Psychology, Gender, Diversity,Psychology Curriculum

Effects of Group Status and Implicit Theories of Personality on Bystander Responses to Antigay Bullying

Jennifer Katz* and Sydney Klainberg, SUNY Geneseo

ABSTRACT: Students perceived to be lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning or otherwise nonconforming (LGBTQ+) are at risk for bullying and other forms of victimization. Bystanders who witness bullying may respond as prosocial advocates, such as by confronting the perpetrator, which may promote both individual safety and a more inclusive campus climate. The present study assessed the effects of group status and bystander’s beliefs about the human capacity for change on college students' responses to antigay bullying. Participants (N = 199) at a small Northeastern college in the United States were randomly assigned to react to an antigay bullying scenario in which they were either alone or with 3 friends after they were surveyed on their beliefs about human malleability. Results showed a significant Group Status x Beliefs interaction (p = .004, Cohen’s d = 0.48). In the lone bystander condition, compared to those who reported the belief that humans are essentially unchangeable, those who reported greater belief in the human capacity for change reported significantly greater intent to confront (p = .004, Cohen’s d = 0.61) and less intent to withdraw from the perpetrator (p = .04, Cohen’s d = 0.33). In contrast, bystanders in groups reported similarly low intent to confront regardless of their reported beliefs about the human capacity for change. Bystander educational programs may explicitly address beliefs about human malleability as well as the classic bystander effect to promote more frequent intervention.

KEYWORDS: bystander, bullying, gay, confrontation, entity beliefs, incremental beliefs

/ Diversity Training Methods, Opinions of Political Correctness, and Perceptions of Microaggressions

Nicole L. Smith and Elise J. Percy*, North Central College

ABSTRACT: This experiment studied the impact of diversity training methods and political correctness opinions on participants’ perception of microaggressions. It was hypothesized that (a) those with a positive political correctness opinion would be more aware of microaggressions after diversity training than those with a negative political correctness opinion, (b) the perspective-taking training group would be more effective than the prescriptive training group, and (c) those with a negative political correctness opinion in the prescriptive training condition would have a backfire response in which their awareness of microaggressions would decrease. Using a 2 x 2 design, participants completed a questionnaire assessing their opinion of political correctness and were then randomly assigned to 1 of the diversity training conditions. All participants analyzed a series of comics depicting microaggressions and ranked their offensiveness on a 5-point Likert scale, both before and after training, to measure their change in perception. No significant difference was found for opinion of political correctness, F(2, 54) = 0.11, p = .900, ηp2 = .004. A significant opposite result was found for diversity training method, F(1, 54) = 10.03, p = .002, ηp2 = .150, with a greater change in perception for those in the prescriptive group as compared to those in the perspective taking group. Additionally, no backfire response was detected among those with a negative political correctness opinion in the prescriptive condition. Findings suggest that exposure to diverse perspectives is important for changes in microaggression perception to occur.

KEYWORDS: microaggressions, political correctness, diversity training

Scholar Identity Development: A Book Writing Journey and Tips for Undergraduate Mentors

Jorge Cabrera, Jennifer E. Gilmour, and Jennifer L. Lovell*, California State University, Monterey Bay

ABSTRACT: Faculty on campuses of higher education do not reflect the cultural diversity within the United States. To create a pipeline of diverse faculty, it is necessary to foster the scholar identity development of underrepresented undergraduate students via research experience and mentor-mentee relationships. To address this gap in the literature, a collaborative autoethnography was used to investigate factors that helped mold the scholar identity of 6 diverse undergraduate students (e.g., gender, ethnicity, age, first generation status, and class) and worked with their mentor on the writing process of a book. Participant researchers included 5 women (83%) and 3 first-generation college students (50%), with ages from 22–31 years. Ethnic identity was split between Latino/a (n = 3; 50%) and White/European American (n = 3; 50%). As part of the book writing process, team members used technology (e.g., reference management, asynchronous communication, online resource evaluation, and QR Codes), allowing them to work remotely outside the confines of the conventional research lab. Students provided feedback, reviewed resources, worked on references, and completed other tasks. Participant researchers reflected on how their experiences in the research lab impacted their scholar identity development. Qualitative analysis produced themes defining scholar identity and elaborating on ways the experience expanded personal and professional growth. Scholar identity development was supported via a trusting and safe environment created in two primary ways: (a) valuing each person and (b) closing the power gap. A full description of themes and subthemes will be presented along with suggestions for future research.

KEYWORDS: Collaborative autoethnography, scholar identity, mentor, protégé

/ Microaggression Detection Measurement Impact on White College Students’ Colorblindness

Christina A. Patterson, University of New Mexico; Melanie M. Domenech Rodríguez, Utah State University

ABSTRACT: Racial microaggressions can unduly tax people of color. To combat their impact, people need an increased awareness and ability to detect microaggressions when they occur. The present study examined White individuals’ ability to accurately detect microaggressions across 3 conditions with varied exposure to knowledge about microaggressions (control, low-exposure, high-exposure) at pre- to postintervention. Undergraduate university students (N = 103) were recruited from 2 predominantly White universities. At pre- and postintervention, participants watched a set of video clips, some of which contained racial microaggressions, answered a series of questions regarding the content of the videos, and completed the Colorblind Racial Attitudes Scale (CoBRAS). Participants watched a 1 hr video on racial microaggressions, read an article on microaggressions, or read an article on positive psychology. CoBRAS total score from pre- (M = 62.23, SD = 15.39) to postintervention (M = 61.67, SD = 15.66), t(102) = 3.26, p = .002, d = .32, indicated a significant decrease in overall colorblindness and a significant increase in awareness of racial privilege scores from pre- (M = 26.67, SD = 7.51) to postintervention (M = 25.51, SD = 7.87), t(102) = 3.28, p = .001, d = .32. Awareness of institutional discrimination and blatant racial discrimination did not shift significantly. Results suggest that repeated exposures to videos of microaggressions had a significant effect in increasing awareness of participants’ racial privilege and decreasing colorblind attitudes. This has implications for interventions and future research.

KEYWORDS: microaggressions, prejudice reduction, colorblindness, online intervention, media psychology

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