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Researching Stereotypes

Stereotypes, like bias, are a social phenomenon that fuels isms. Every culture has stereotypes.

Part of understanding stereotypes more deeply requires us to answer such questions as “How are stereotypes formed?” “What attitudes, beliefs, or experiences maintain stereotypes?” and “How are stereotypes changed?” That is where research comes in. Unfortunately, it is hard to research a topic when research participants do not want to admit that they hold stereotypes, let alone use them to make life decisions.

In this discussion, you will address religious stereotypes and create a research study that investigates those stereotypes within a religious culture of your choice. Finally, you will evaluate how cultural and research biases will affect your study.

Instructions

Your initial post will have two parts. First, complete the following:

  • Identify two stereotypes about a specific religion or faith.
  • Compare and contrast the stereotypes and their effects on the subjects of the stereotypes.

Next, describe a design for a research study related to your specialization that investigates an issue related to a stereotype or is counter to a stereotype. You may investigate anything related to the faith or religion, and stereotypes. For example, if you were a chemical dependency counselor, you might investigate alcoholism in Jewish Americans.

  • Explain, briefly, what your research study plans to investigate and why this is important.
  • Articulate the cultural biases that may surface in your research and how you will manage or avoid them.
  • Explain how will you recruit participants.
  • Discern the types of research biases you will want to avoid in the study.

Your initial discussion post should be at least 200 words.

Response Guidelines

Respond to at least two other learners. Please try to choose posts that have not yet had responses. Each peer response should be 150 words or more. When responding to a peer, consider whether his or her post contains any assumptions or faulty logic that should be questioned. Is it incomplete in any way? Can you enlarge upon the ideas presented or suggest variations? Are there flaws with participant recruitment or research biases that can be avoided? Support your opinions by citing course readings or your own experience, if relevant.

Learning Components

This activity will help you achieve the following learning components:

  • Describe types of cultural bias.
  • Identify research-based best practices related to culture.

Resources

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