Effects of stereotype threat, perceived discrimination, and examiner race on neuropsychological performance: Simple as black and white?

April D. Thames, Charles H. Hinkin, Desiree A. Byrd, Robert M. Bilder, Kimberley J. Duff, Monica Rivera Mindt, Alyssa Arentoft, Vanessa Streiff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

79 Scopus citations

Abstract

The purpose of the current study was to examine the predictive roles of stereotype threat and perceived discrimination and the mediating role of examiner-examinee racial discordance on neuropsychological performance in a non-clinical sample of African American and Caucasian individuals. Ninety-two African American (n = 45) and Caucasian (n = 47) adults were randomly assigned to either a stereotype threat or non-threat condition. Within each condition, participants were randomly assigned to either a same race or different race examiner. All participants underwent neuropsychological testing and completed a measure of perceived discrimination. African Americans in the stereotype threat condition performed significantly worse on global NP (Mz = -.30, 95% confidence interval [CI] [-0.07, -0.67] than African Americans in the non-threat condition (Mz = 0.09, CI [0.15, 0.33]. African Americans who reported high levels of perceived discrimination performed significantly worse on memory tests when tested by an examiner of a different race, Mz = -1.19, 95% CI [-1.78, -.54], than African Americans who were tested by an examiner of the same race, Mz = 0.24, 95% CI [-0.24, 0.72]. The current study underscores the importance of considering the role of contextual variables in neuropsychological performance, as these variables may obscure the validity of results among certain racial/ethnic groups.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)583-593
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of the International Neuropsychological Society
Volume19
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2013

Keywords

  • Ethnicity
  • Examiner-examinee racial discordance
  • Neuropsychology
  • Perceived discrimination
  • Performance anxiety
  • Stereotype threat

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