Stereotype threat is a situational predicament in which people are or feel themselves to be at risk of conforming to stereotypes about their social group. Situational factors that increase stereotype threat can include the difficulty of the task, the belief that the task measures their abilities, and the relevance of the stereotype to the task. Individuals show higher degrees of stereotype threat on tasks they wish to perform well on and when they identify strongly with the stereotyped group. These effects are also increased when they expect discrimination due to their identification with a negatively stereotyped group. According to the theory, if negative stereotypes are present regarding a specific group, group members are likely to become anxious about their performance, which may hinder their ability to perform to their full potential. Importantly, the individual does not need to subscribe to the stereotype for it to be activated. It is hypothesized that the mechanism through which anxiety induced by the activation of the stereotype decreases performance is by depleting working memory especially the phonological aspects of the working memory system. Some researchers have suggested that stereotype threat should not be interpreted as a factor in real-life performance gaps, and have raised the possibility of publication bias. More than studies have been published showing the effects of stereotype threat on performance in a variety of domains. The strength of the stereotype threat that occurs depends on how the task is framed. If a task is framed to be neutral, stereotype threat is not likely to occur; however, if tasks are framed in terms of active stereotypes, participants are likely to perform worse on the task. In contrast, women who were told that their opponent was female performed as would be predicted by past ratings of performance. A study extended stereotype threat research to entrepreneurship , a traditionally male-stereotyped profession. The study revealed that stereotype threat can depress women's entrepreneurial intentions while boosting men's intentions. However, when entrepreneurship is presented as a gender-neutral profession, men and women express a similar level of interest in becoming entrepreneurs. When it was described as a test of athletic ability, European-American students performed worse, but when the description mentioned intelligence, African-American students performed worse. Other studies have demonstrated how stereotype threat can negatively affect the performance of European Americans in athletic situations [32] as well as the performance of men who are being tested on their social sensitivity. Individuals who highly identify with a particular group appear to be more vulnerable to experiencing stereotype threat than individuals who do not identify strongly with the stereotyped group. The mere presence of other people can evoke stereotype threat. The goal of a study conducted by Desert, Preaux, and Jund in was to see if children from lower socioeconomic groups are affected by stereotype threat. The study compared children that were 6—7 years old with children that were 8—9 years old from multiple elementary schools. These children were presented with the Raven's Matrices test, which is an intellectual ability test. Separate groups of children were given directions in an evaluative way and other groups were given directions in a non-evaluative way. The "evaluative" group received instructions that are usually given with the Raven Matrices test, while the "non-evaluative" group was given directions which made it seem as if the children were simply playing a game. The results showed that third graders performed better on the test than the first graders did, which was expected. However, the lower socioeconomic status children did worse on the test when they received directions in an evaluative way than the higher socioeconomic status children did when they received directions in an evaluative way. These results suggested that the framing of the directions given to the children may have a greater effect on performance than socioeconomic status. This was shown by the differences in performance based on which type of instructions they received. This information can be useful in classroom settings to help improve the performance of students of lower socioeconomic status. There have been studies on the effects of stereotype threat based on age. A study was done on 99 senior citizens ranging in age from 60—75 years.

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