Key Terms for Issues and Debates

Gender Bias

Alpha Bias - A tendency to exaggerate differences between men and women. The consequence is that theories devalue one gender in comparison to the other

Androcentrism - Centred or focused on men, often to the neglect or exclusion of women

Beta Bias - A tendency to ignore or minimise differences between men and women. Such theories tend either to ignore questions about the lives of women, or assume that insights derived from studies of men will apply equally well to women

Gender Bias - The differential treatment or representation of men and women based in stereotypes rather than real differences

Universality - The aim to develop theories that apply to all people, which may include real differences

Cultural Bias

Cultural Bias - The tendency to judge all people in terms of your own cultural assumptions. This distorts or biases your judgement

Cultural Relativism - The view that all behaviour cannot be judged properly unless it is viewed in the context of the culture in which it originates

Culture - The rules, customs, morals and ways of interacting that bind together members of a society or some other collection of people

Ethnocentrism - Seeing things from the point of view of ourselves and our social group. Evaluating other groups of people using the standards and


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salty looking laura