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ERIC Number: EJ782339
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Nov-9
Pages: 1
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-0009-5982
You're Not Fooling Anyone
Gravois, John
Chronicle of Higher Education, v54 n11 pA1 Nov 2007
In psychological terms, impostor syndrome is a cognitive distortion that prevents a person from internalizing any sense of accomplishment. By many accounts, academics--graduate students, junior professors, and even some full professors--relate to this only a little less than they relate to eye strain. The condition was first identified in 1978 by the psychologists Pauline Rose Clance and Suzanne Imes, who initially thought it was an anxiety unique to women. They avoided the word "syndrome," calling it instead the "impostor phenomenon." The idea quickly struck a chord with scholars from the working class, along with other beneficiaries of the social mobility that infused higher education in the 1960s and 1970s. Those new academics bristled at the old guard's sense of entitlement. But they found themselves crippled by a stubborn inability to feel the same. Meanwhile, scholars who came from academic legacies--the children of the old guard--had feelings of unearned privilege to contend with. In the mid-1980s, Ms. Clance teamed up with Gail Matthews, now a professor of psychology at Dominican University of California, to conduct a survey on the phenomenon. They found that about 70 percent of people from all walks of life--men and women--have felt like impostors for at least some part of their careers.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A