The Bias Virus

Here is an article written by my daughter Aspen for her psych class. The instructor liked it so much that he put it up on the blog.

Get Psyched, Louisville!

Bias virus imageNearly every parent can remember a time when their child wanted to wear a certain outfit or eat a certain food because “that’s what mommy and daddy do.” It’s no question that kids are copy cats.

However, kids may pick up on much more than just eating habits. A recent study shows that children can actually “catch” social bias from adults, even when they don’t openly say anything biased.

Kids in this study watched videos in which adults showed positive gestures (such as smiling and leaning in) to one woman and negative gestures (such as scowling and leaning away) to another woman. Although the words that were spoken between the adults and the women were the same, the kids still showed a strong preference for the woman the adults were nice to. Not only that, but this preference actually carried over to the best friend of the woman, suggesting that…

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