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Acta Psychologica Sinica    2012, Vol. 44 Issue (9) : 1189-1201     DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2012.01189
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Two-Stage Model of Stereotype Activation Based on Face Perception
ZHANG Xiao-Bin;ZUO Bin
(School of Psychology, Central China Normal University, Key Laboratory of Adolescent Cyberpsychology and Behavior, Ministry of Education, Wuhan 430079, China)
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Abstract  The mechanism of stereotype activation has been the hot spot in stereotype research. The previous studies indicated the activation of stereotype was not always automatic. Under some conditions, the stereotypes did not activate automatically. Some factors affect automatic activation of stereotypes, such as cognitive load, anticipation, processing purpose and so on. However, there were no decisive conclusion on why stereotype activation was affected by these factors and what the mechanism of these effects was. One major reason causing above-mentioned problems was that the previous studies have ignored the exploration into the mechanism of the stereotype activation through studying the processing process of stereotype activation, such as whether stereotype activation can be divided. There were two reasons causing this negligence. One reason was that previous research paradigm was not suitable to explore the processing process of stereotype activation. The other reason was that, under the framework of social cognition, researchers have neglected the effects of perceptual processing to stereotype activation. Based on the above analysis, from the more ecological validity perspective of person construal, the authors proposed two-stage model of stereotype activation and verified it through two experiments. In Experiment 1, 32 participants were randomly selected and assigned to the experimental treatments. The authors compared the reaction time of gender categorization, the judgment of stereotype match in priming paradigm and the judgment of stereotype match in simultaneous presentation paradigm. In Experiment 2, 33 participants were randomly selected and assigned to the experimental treatments. Based on simultaneous presentation paradigm, operating the difficulty of extracting social category from faces by the face deformation, the authors explored the effect of face perception on stereotype activation. The results of Experiment 1 showed that the reaction time of the judgment of stereotype match under simultaneous presentation paradigm was significantly longer than the reaction time of gender categorization and the judgment of stereotype match in priming paradigm respectively, and it was equal to the sum of the reaction time of gender categorization and the judgment of stereotype match under priming paradigm. The effect of face presentation (inverted) to stereotype activation was different between priming paradigm and simultaneous presentation paradigm. The results of Experiment 2 showed that, with the increase of the difficulty to extract social category from faces, the reaction time of stereotype activation became longer. The results of two experiments confirmed two-stage model of stereotype activation proposed by the authors, that is, the stage of social category activation based on face perception and the stage of stereotype information activation. Category activation and stereotype information activation are two distinct processes. The results also indicated that face perception to extracting social category had significant effect on stereotype activation: the more difficult to extract social category from the faces the longer to the reaction time of stereotype activation is.
Keywords two-stage model of stereotype activation      face perception      simultaneous presentation paradigm      person construal      category extraction     
Corresponding Authors: ZUO Bin   
Issue Date: 28 September 2012
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ZHANG Xiao-Bin;ZUO Bin. Two-Stage Model of Stereotype Activation Based on Face Perception[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica,2012, 44(9): 1189-1201.
URL:  
http://journal.psych.ac.cn/xlxb/EN/10.3724/SP.J.1041.2012.01189     OR     http://journal.psych.ac.cn/xlxb/EN/Y2012/V44/I9/1189
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