How Gender and Race Stereotypes Impact the Advancement of Scholars in STEM: Professors’ Biased Evaluations of Physics and Biology Post-doctoral Candidates

Eaton, Asia A.; Saunders, Jessica F.; Jacobson, Ryan K. and West, Keon. 2020. How Gender and Race Stereotypes Impact the Advancement of Scholars in STEM: Professors’ Biased Evaluations of Physics and Biology Post-doctoral Candidates. Sex Roles, 82(3-4), pp. 127-141. ISSN 0360-0025 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

The current study examines how intersecting stereotypes about gender and race influence faculty perceptions of post-doctoral candidates in STEM fields in the United States. Using a fully-crossed, between-subjects experimental design biology and physics professors (N = 251) from eight large, public, U.S. research universities were asked to read one of eight identical curriculum vitae (CVs) depicting a hypothetical doctoral graduate applying for a post-doctoral position in their relevant field and rate them for competence, hireability, and likeability. The candidate’s name on the CV was used to manipulate race (Asian, Black, Latinx, and White) and gender (female or male), with all other aspects of the CV held constant across conditions. Faculty in physics exhibited a gender bias favoring the male candidates as more competent and more hirable than the otherwise identical female candidates. Faculty in both biology and physics demonstrated a racial bias, rating the Asian and White candidates as more competent than Black candidates overall. Further, physics faculty rated Asian and White candidates as more hirable than Black and Latinx candidates, whereas those in biology rated the Asian candidates as more hirable than the Black candidates. An interaction between candidate gender and race emerged for those in physics whereby women Black and Latinx candidates were rated the lowest in competence compared to all others. Women were rated more likeable than men candidates across departments. Our results highlight how understanding the underrepresentation of women and racial minorities in STEM requires examining both racial and gender biases as well as how they intersect.

Item Type:

Article

Identification Number (DOI):

https://doi.org/10.1007/s11199-019-01052-w

Additional Information:

This is a post-peer-review, pre-copyedit version of an article published in Sex Roles.

Keywords:

STEM, prejudice, gender gap, racial discrimination, academic settings, intersectionality

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Psychology

Dates:

DateEvent
20 March 2019Accepted
3 June 2019Published Online
February 2020Published

Item ID:

26141

Date Deposited:

03 Apr 2019 09:59

Last Modified:

03 Jun 2020 08:29

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.

URI:

http://research.gold.ac.uk/id/eprint/26141

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