As part of this ongoing blog which covers all aspects of Looch’s performing career, a new element to the blog is being introduced with this first PsychoBlog post. These posts will focus on specific Psychological theories that may be of interest to those of you that are fascinated with the mind and how it works.The main aim of these blog posts is to give a brief and simplistic insight to particular theories for those who have a passive interest in psychology.

These blog entries will cover a wide range of ideas and concepts from all over the world.  If you enjoy them, like always please share them or connect other people to them via the social media bar at the bottom of the post. Thanks!

The first theory that will be blogged is something called:

The Stereotype Threat

[quote style=”boxed”]If you fear that your own performance in a certain task will be used to reinforce a particular stereotype about your (age, gender, race) the result could become self fulfilling.[/quote]

The Stereotype ThreatHere’s an example, A group of friends are playing a game of football in a field on a summers day. There is a mixture of male and female friends playing. One of the girls steps up to kick a penalty.

In her mind is a tiny, niggling feeling that the male friends think she is going to mess up the kick. Their belief is a result of a huge over generalisation but nevertheless the girl is rather anxious that if she does mess the penalty up, then it only serves to reinforce the sexist assumptions of the males present.

Her own anxiety will regardless have an effect on her performance. This is a self fulfilling effect commonly known n Psychology as “The Stereotype Threat”

This theory was first introduced in the mid 1990’s by Joshua Aronson & Claude Steele. They had discovered that Black participants tended to perform worse at a specific intelligence test. The test had been described to them as a “test of ability” rather than, like others, “an investigation into problem solving”

Since this research, this theory has been documented in relation to other contexts for example:

  • Gender bias
  • Mental Illness
  • Male Vs Female in competitions
  • Specific illness’s Vs …

Brief examples are:

Female Chess players will under perform when they “think” they are performing against males (Computer chess, where the human opponent isn’t present)

Schizophrenia patients who think their condition has been revealed to other people will tend to behave more awkwardly (even when their condition hasn’t been revealed)

Below is a brief video of Claude Steele explaining the effects of TST on peoples functioning.

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