In this article what is the relationship betwen experimental design and the authors' hypothesis?"Cognitive costs of exposure to racial prejudice" by Salvatore & Shelton. [Racism's Cognitive...

In this article what is the relationship betwen experimental design and the authors' hypothesis?

"Cognitive costs of exposure to racial prejudice" by Salvatore & Shelton.

[Racism's Cognitive Toll: Subtle Discrimination is More Taxing on the Brain: http://www.psychologicalscience.org/media/releases/2007/shelton.cfm]

Asked on by m01

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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In this study, the authors hypothesized the members of minority groups would have their cognitive function impaired when they witnessed acts of subtle racial bias.  This informed their research design.  In order to test this, the authors:

  • Exposed some subjects to overt racism
  • Exposed other subjects to subtle racism
  • Used subjects from minority groups and white subjects
  • Then gave the subjects tests of cognitive function

By exposing the subjects to racism that was both overt and subtle, the researchers were able to test their hypothesis.  If they were correct, the minority group members should have had less cognitive function (greater impairment) when faced with subtle racism than when faced with overt racism.  This research design, in which subjects were exposed to both kinds of racism, was meant to measure that hypothesis.

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