Journalists Invited to Take the Test for Age, Race, Disability, Gender or Sexual Orientation!*
In a diverse society, hidden prejudice is a threat to social harmony and a hazard at work. In order to address this issue, Europe’s leading psychometrics publisher, Hogrefe, has launched Implicitly™, the world’s first commercially available diagnostic tool that not only measures prejudice but predicts the likelihood of the subject behaving in a discriminatory fashion on the basis of age, disability, ethnic origin, gender or sexual orientation.
“People are hardwired to like people like themselves so everyone has biases towards or against particular social groups,” comments Dr Pete Jones, an acknowledged expert in the subject and the tool’s creator. “It’s absolutely natural and such biases are a normal outcome of the socialisation process. The challenge has always been; how can biased attitudes be measured and, subsequently, best managed.”
Implicit Association Theory (IAT) is an accepted methodology that measures unconscious bias and Implicitly is a user-friendly and unique IAT-based online assessment tool. It measures conscious and unconscious prejudicial attitudes and reports on the participants’ responses in two key ways that make it valuable in assessing negative attitudes.
Firstly, Implicitly scores provide hard evidence of the link between test results and the probability of discriminatory behaviour in real life. Secondly, Implicitly produces non-judgemental feedback which ‘contextualises’ prejudice and guides test takers through a series of exercises which help them understand their biases and challenge negative prejudices.
“The good news,” adds Dr Jones, “is that because prejudice is learned, it can be unlearned. Implicitly helps in that process because, for the first time, we can now predict a predilection for prejudice and at worst manage or, at best, even free ourselves from this prejudice.”
How does Implicitly do this?
Implicitly taps unconscious and uncontrolled reactions to other groups through a short, straightforward sorting task. By examining the speed and accuracy with which people sort words and facial photographs of various groups, the test is able to establish the level of risk of that person exhibiting racist, sexist, homophobic, ageist or anti-disabled behaviours. As the test accesses unconscious mental processing over which we have no direct control, it is resistant to attempts to fake or distort a result.
Implicitly is more than a psychometric test. A great deal of thought has gone into how best to give people the results of their tests and supporting test takers with advice on changing or managing any social biases which are identified. Feedback – which can be delivered in several, managed ways - is designed to be non-pejorative and uses cognitive behavioural techniques to enable people to gain control of their unconscious biases and the latest research into ways of reducing or managing bias are employed.
Wendy Lord, Chief Psychologist at Hogrefe, commenting on the launch said: “Unlike other IAT tests developed to measure prejudice, Implicitly goes beyond simply measuring the strength of prejudicial attitudes. Enabling the prediction of the likelihood of discriminatory behaviour is key to the use of such tests in practice and Implicitly is the only test of its kind that provides such a facility.
“Furthermore, Implicitly is the only test of its kind that helps practitioners deal with the tricky issue of telling test takers that their results suggest they are potentially at high risk for showing discrimination. The test automatically generates full text reports that explain such scores to the test-taker in a non-threatening way and which suggest ways in which the test-taker might learn to manage their behaviour.”
Implicitly is already being successfully trialled with several organisations in the UK - including anti-racist bodies – and is available exclusively from Hogrefe. Exact pricing will vary depending on the number and type of tests required. However, as a guide, a user could expect to take all eight tests and receive in-depth feedback on the ones which indicate there are issues to address for less than £100.
* To take the test visit www.implicitly.co.uk and login using ‘launch’ as your login and ‘event’ as your password. Once you’ve completed the test, please email the team at firstname.lastname@example.org with your contact details. Your results will then be forwarded to you and one of the company’s experts will be in touch to talk them over with you.
Founded in 1949, Hogrefe is Europe’s leading psychometrics publisher with over 66,000 clients and offices worldwide. Dr Jones is a Chartered Psychologist and a Chartered Scientist who specialises in the development of unique and innovative psychometric tests for the workplace. He spent twenty years as a police officer and was a diversity and equal opportunities trainer with the police service as well as working as an innovations research manager at the Home Office where he won two awards for his research innovation.
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