A stereotype threat intervention that examines causal attributions, self -efficacy, and perceived faculty support

Megan Frost, University of Rhode Island


Women underperform on math tasks in comparison to men when they are in a situation that is high in stereotype threat. Stereotype threat intervention research has found several methods for improving performance, such as allowing the female participants to attribute potential failure to an external source. This study replicated the results of a teaching intervention study that consisted of informing participants about stereotype threat, and asked that they attribute any performance-related anxiety to stereotype threat. All study participants were women. In order to make the stereotype threat message more salient, participants learned about the concept and theory by watching a video of Claude Steele discussing his research. The study additionally examined the attributions made for performance on the math test using the Causal Dimension Scale II. This study produced no significant differences. The results revealed no significant differences were found between the math test performances of the participants who were taught about stereotype threat and those who were not. The study did not show significant differences between groups on the Causal Dimension Scale II, a scale which measures attributions made for success or failure on a task. This study also looked at factors such as self-efficacy and perceived faculty support. Predictive relationships were examined by looking at treatment condition, self-efficacy, and perceived faculty support to see if these individual variables predict math test performance. Perceived faculty support did not predict math test scores, self-efficacy did not predict math test scores, and treatment condition did not predict math test performance. This study also examined potential interaction effects between self-efficacy with perceived faculty support and also self-efficacy with internal attributions in order to examine if they predict math test performance. Results indicated that these factors were not predictive of performance on the math test. Interaction effects were not significant resulting in self-efficacy and perceived faculty support not interacting to predict math test performance, and self-efficacy and internal attributions did not interact to predict math test performance. ^

Subject Area

Education, Educational Psychology

Recommended Citation

Megan Frost, "A stereotype threat intervention that examines causal attributions, self -efficacy, and perceived faculty support" (2009). Dissertations and Master's Theses (Campus Access). Paper AAI3367991.