The Possible Determinants and Influences of Gender Bias in Adolescents
by Sena Chang
Abstract – Given the current climate of social discrimination, it has become pertinent to understand why certain groups form biases against their “outgroups”. In this study, the extent to which adolescents (12-19) have gender bias was measured using two contextual factors: 1) relation to family and 2) relation to the country at large. Using a sample of 41 adolescents from 20 cultural backgrounds, the IAT Test was used to measure gender bias alongside three of Hofstede’s dimensions of national culture, which were used as a measure of one’s culture. Employing a mixed methods approach framed within a Simmelian perspective on group affiliations, it was found that a higher assessment of individualism and masculinity in one’s country significantly increased one’s tendency to stereotype. In regard to family-level characteristics, the presence of a working mother was identified to lower the severity of gender stereotypes. This study contributes to an understanding of the predictors of gender bias in adolescents and can be utilized by policymakers combating the climate of gender discrimination and educators fostering children during their process of identity formation.
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