ERIC Number: ED362279
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1993-Mar
Reducing Sex-Typed Perceptions of Children: The Role of Environmental Exposure.
Murphy, Kimberlee C.; Huston, Aletha C.
This study examined the effect of the amount and diversity of information about a child on adults' perceptions of the child's personality traits and sex-typed interests. A sample of 197 college students (ranging in age from 18 to 28 years) were randomly assigned one of three exposure conditions: (1) maximum exposure (subjects observed six boys, ages 6 to 8 years, play for 2 minutes each in six environmental settings); (2) limited exposure (subjects observed a boy play in two of the six settings); and (3) and no exposure (subjects did not observe a boy play, but instead saw still video pictures of a boy and the settings). After exposure, subjects completed questionnaires that measured recall of displayed behaviors and perceptions of the child's masculine and feminine personality traits, interests in toys, and participation in games. Measures of subjects' sex-role orientations were also collected to control for possible observer biases. Compared to subjects who observed the boys in a limited number of settings, those who had the maximum exposure displayed less adherence to sex-stereotypes, describing the boys as having not only more masculine, but also more feminine personality traits and interests. Although women perceived the boys to be more masculine than did men, sex-role orientation was not related to perceptions. (MM)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Child Health and Human Development (NIH), Bethesda, MD.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development (60th, New Orleans, LA, March 25-28, 1993).