--Original published at Gracie's Blog
I chose to write about the first option for chapter 12 and took two different Implicit Association Tests. First I took the Age Implicit Association Test, where I had to sort pictures and words into certain groups as fast as I could. There were also just a few questions asked about my opinions and beliefs. The test said it was ten minutes long, and at the end of the test I would receive a result along with a definition of what it means. The test started with asking questions about my age and my thoughts on old people versus young people and which I prefer. The questions also asked me what ages I thought a person changes from child to young adult, young adult to adult, and so on. The next part of the test involved looking at pictures and words while pressing the “E” or “I” keys. The first few rounds were looking at a series of pictures representing old people and negative words, and pictures of young people and positive words. I had to press “E” for old people pictures and negative words, and the “I” key for young face pictures and positive words. As the test progressed the keys switched roles and represented the opposite picture or term than before. During this test I felt as if I was taking a concussion test because it was measuring my accuracy along with my speed of hitting the keys. My result after the age test said that I have a slight automatic preference for young people over old people. These results were given because I was quicker responding to “young” people corresponding with “good”.
The next test I took referred to gender-career and also focused on pictures associating with words. The questions at the beginning of the test are mainly for adults because it refers to annual income and employment questions, which was hard to answer because I am still a student. The test continued with seven parts, each section had letter keys “E” and “I” the corresponded to different topics. The first section were comparing “family” words, which I had to press the “E” key when family words appeared and “Job” words required me pressing the “I” key. The next section was comparing the words “male” and “female” names. The next section involved words in the male and family category and when the words popped up I had to press the “E” key. When seeing words in a female and career category press the “I” key. As the test progressed the roles of the keys were opposite. My results showed that I moderately associate females with family and males with career. I received those results because I was faster with hitting the keys when males were associated with career than when female was associated with career. I never thought about whether males or females represent one category than the other.
I think IATs are helpful and interesting to help people realize what they may prefer without ever thinking about it. For college students or when in the career field, taking an IAT can give you the results you need to find what they actually prefer and where or who they may want to work.