Gender Schema Theory

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Gender Schema Theory


> MARTIN AND HALVERSON came up with gender schema theory.

> The process of aquiring gender-relevant info happens before gender constancy is achievedd - basic gender labelling is sufficient to identify as either boy/girl & take an interest in appropriate behaviours.

> The acquisition of stereotypes/schema affects later behaviour, especially in terms of memory & attention.

(What is a schema?)

> A schema is a mental representation of an aspect of the world - it's a cluster of related items that together represent a concept.

Gender Schema theory

Schemas - 

> Children learn schemas related to gender from their interactions with other children & adults, as well as from TV or videos.

> Such gender schemas or stereotypes have the function of organising & structuring other info that's presented to children - they learn what toys are appropriate for each gender & what to wear.

Ingroup and outgroup schema - 

> The term ingroup refers to the groups with which a person identifies - being a girl means you identify with that group (you're also in many other groups like where you grew up & what band's you like).

> Once a child's identified with a ingorup this leads them to positively evaluate their own group and negatively evaluate the outgroup (this motivates them to be like their own group & avoid behaviours of the other (also seek what their ingroup does).

Resilience of gender beliefs - 

> Gender beliefs lead children to hold very fixed gender attitudes because they ignore any info they encounter that's not consistent with ingroup info (e.g. if a…


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