The Harmful Effect of Unconscious Bias
Human beings are imperfect creatures. Our upbringings, social histories, and past experiences create and shape our biases. To avoid being biased is to try to avoid being human. Even when we believe our biases to be positive, they can be harmful to others.
Unconscious biases are hidden to the person with the bias; he or she cannot address a problem without awareness that the problem exists. In this discussion, you will analyze the harmful effects of unconscious biases on three different types of culture: race and ethnicity, gender, and sexual orientation.
In your initial post to this discussion:
- Describe a typical work scenario based on your psychology specialization. For example, if your specialization is clinical psychology, a typical work situation may be providing therapy to a group of low-income pregnant mothers. Make sure that your scenario includes a person of a different race and ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation from your own.
- How might you unknowingly convey prejudice, bias, and discrimination in that situation?
- How do power and privilege factor into the situation you described?
- What do you need to do to avoid this kind of situation as much as possible?
Your initial discussion post should be at least 200 words.
Read the posts of your peers and respond to at least two. Please try to choose posts that have not yet had responses. Each peer response should be 150 words or more. When responding to a peer, consider whether your peer’s post contains any assumptions or faulty logic that should be questioned. Is it incomplete in any way? Can you expand upon the ideas presented or suggest variations? What points are made particularly well? Support your opinions by citing course readings or your own experience, if relevant.
This activity will help you achieve the following learning components:
- Describe types of cultural bias.
- Identify research-based best practices related to culture.