Effects of Stereotype Threat on Females in Math and Science Fields: An Investigation of Possible Mediators and Moderators of the Threat-Performance Relationship
Hardee Bailey, Alice Anne
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A mediated-moderation model of stereotype threat was tested. Domain identification and motivational orientation were treated as moderators of the threat effect on self-efficacy and cognitive interference, which were hypothesized to mediate the threat-performance relationship. Participants were primed with stereotype-consistent, stereotype inconsistent, or no information regarding sex differences in mathematical abilities. While significant performance differences were found between males and females in the control and threat conditions, no differences were found in a female benefit condition that described a math task as favoring females. Significant sex differences in domain identity and self-efficacy were also found. Post-hoc analyses revealed that domain identification and self-efficacy explained significant amounts of variance in sex differences in math performance. The results provide general support for Steeles theory of stereotype threat and resulting disidentification with the task domain among targets.