Research proposal on Racial Stereotyping and Prejudice


Research proposal on Racial Stereotyping and Prejudice


Numerous researches indicate that the minority immigrants have been moving to different countries around the world especially the United States. The immigration has resulted in diverse cultures and ethnicity around the world. Despite the growth in cultural diversities, there are numerous cases of racial and ethnic stereotyping and discrimination. The objective of this study is to highlight some of the issues related to racial prejudice and to establish a tool, which will be applied to deal with such cases. The program will be applied with the assistance of the data collected from both the immigrants and the host who have encountered racial prejudice directly or indirectly.


Individuals from all over the world travel to different countries for adventure and cultural integration with different people. International tourists have their concerns on the on the issues related to racial conflicts they experience during their travels. The conflict not only reflects on the tourists but also on individuals in schools and businesses in the foreign countries. Individuals migrating from their homeland to a different country, especially for permanent resettlement, might find themselves facing a different environment or niche in a different social world on issues related to gender, language, culture, ethnicity, class and race. The new immigrants have their own cultures, conception and language from their home country, and they might not mesh well with the issues and ideologies associated with the receiving society (Rudman & Ashmore, 2008). For instance, the United States has its own cultural differences thanks to the crucial role played by the formation of different cultures and languages from different parts of the world. The different cultures in the United States have been on the increase since the population of the minority immigrants has also increased in recent years. However, the increased cultural differences has given rise to different racial prejudice and stereotyping within the society.

Background and Statement of the Problem

The increasing number of minority immigrants has always been one of the major issues in the United States even before the cold war. In as much as the growth has entangled a different prospect in relation to culture and diversity, the studies on whites and non-whites indicate that ethnicity and racial discrimination are rampant in the United States. The cases have always been severe especially for the new immigrant communities (Rudman & Ashmore, 2008). For instance, individuals who migrated to the United States after 1975 are reported to have cases of physical, mental, spiritual, psychological, social, and cultural problems, in relation to discrimination and prejudice. In this case, one of the most affected communities is the Hmong community.

Hypothesis, Aim and Objectives

The reports and studies associated with racial prejudice and stereotyping come from personal stories and the media rather than the studies in social studies. Individuals from the Hmong community find stereotyping and prejudice as a new experience form the in a foreign country. The issues related to the cases of prejudice take place due to misinterpretation, knowledge, poor communication, cultural differences, language barriers and rumours. The host communities do not have knowledge and information on the immigrants. This knowledge might be in form of customs or cultural activities.

The hypothesis of this report is to point out that the reason as to why immigrants are subjected to discrimination and prejudice is the ideology that individuals do not have knowledge, awareness and information about them. The idea is to develop a tool of study that will be used by teachers and educators to come up with a strategy to combat racial stereotyping and prejudice (Zirkel, 2004). At the same time, the hypothesis will deal with establishing a tool, which will be applicable in preserving the cultural practices of the immigrants even in a foreign country.

Purpose of the Study

The purpose of the study is to collect data that relates to factors of stereotyping and prejudice against the minority immigrants and the experiences they have had. The completion of analysing data will help assist in coming up with a better strategy to assist the educators and teachers in establishing the best way to deal with prejudice. At the same time, there will be studies based on the history of the immigrants and their cultural heritage. The final product will be the implementation of a tool, which will be used by the teachers to make people in the society, understand the effects of racial stereotyping and prejudice within the society. The entire project will be applicable if the host country understood the language, culture, art and culture of the immigrants.

Study Design

The objective of the proposal is to establish a tool that will help the society refrain from racial stereotyping and prejudice. The arrangement of the objective is applicable in ensuring that the project turns out successful. Therefore, these are some of the questionnaires that will be asked to the participants especially the immigrants.

  1. What do you feel about the being an immigrant in a hostile environment?

  2. What are some of the studies you would like the people from your country to be taught about moving to another country?

  3. Which information would you like the individuals from the host to know about the immigrants from your country?

  4. How does racial stereotyping affect the welfare of its targets?

  5. How does racial stereotyping affect the justice system of affected groups?

Literature Review

Mulvey, Hitti, and Killen (2010) indicate that the United States of America once belonged to the Native Americans. The Natives believed that the country was a free land since majority of them took small portions and made them their territories and homeland. However, according to McKown (2013), immigrants from other parts of the world built the United States. The recent intervention related to the immigrants can be traced back to 1965 when the immigrant’s law was passed making it possible for immigrants from other parts of the world such as Asia and Europe to flock the country (McKown, 2013). The second supporter of the immigrants into the United States was the emergence of maturity, growth, and emergence of scholarship programs that focused on the students from Latin America, African Americans and Asians that allowed students from different racial backgrounds to interact (Rudman & Ashmore, 2008). The establishment enabled individuals from different races to view the ideology of ethnicity and race differently through justice and equality. The growth of minority immigrants in America has also given rise to racial and ethnical prejudice all over the country. For this reason, this research will look at some of the terms related to racial inequality in the country.


Prejudice is abstracted as an attitude with a conative component, an affective component and a cognitive component. Prejudice is, therefore, defined as antagonism based on inflexible and faulty generalization. It may either be expressed or felt, and is concentrated on a group or individual for the reason that one is a member. Researchers have basically defined it as a negative attitude. According to Zannoni (2008), psychologists make an assumption that prejudice organizes the environment at which people are present and adjusts them to people and objects within it. Prejudice serves other psychological purposes as well and these include provision of material advantages and enhancing self-esteem. Although psychologists emphasize on prejudice as an individual’s attitude, sociologists have stressed on its group-based tasks. Sociological theories put emphasis on extensive structural and social dynamics with regard to intergroup relations, and particularly on race relations. The latest definitions of prejudice link the group-level concentration of sociology and the individual-level prominence of psychology by focusing on the changing nature of prejudice. Since prejudice is a representation of an individual level of psychological favoritism, members of groups that were traditionally disadvantaged hold prejudices towards members of the advantaged groups. Prejudice, therefore, creates classified relations amongst groups.


The term ‘stereotype’ refers to the distinctive picture that crosses the mind when a certain social group is thought of. Although early research hypothesized stereotyping as a faulty and inflexible thought process, contemporary research insists on the dynamic and functional characteristics of stereotypes as streamlining a complex environment. Stereotypes are mental diagrams used to process information on other people by social perceivers (McKown, 2013). Stereotypes contain information about supplementary qualities like the degree of group members to share explicit qualities, social roles and affect emotional reactions to members of the group. Stereotypes suggest a considerable amount of information on people beyond their surface qualities and breed expectations on the anticipated behavior of the members of a group in new situations. Stereotypes generate an enthusiasm to perceive characteristics or behaviors consistent to the stereotypes. Characteristics consistent to stereotypes are attended to quickly in the earliest stages of processing perceptions. People assume the characteristics of groups on the basis of the social roles they play. As a result, members of groups that have a lower socioeconomic status are viewed as less competent in comparison to members of groups with a higher status. Stereotypes are therefore defined as beliefs and associations about a group’s attributes and its members, and help to figure people’s thoughts and responses to the group.


With regards to intergroup relations, discrimination is viewed as having a pejorative meaning. More than merely distinguishing amid social objects, it suggests a reference to an unfair and inappropriate treatment of people because of their membership to a particular group. Discrimination involves an active negative behavior in the direction of a group’s member. Discrimination is more of denying a group of people or an individual equal treatment they may be yearning for (Zannoni, 2008). Discrimination is also defined as an action maintained to favor one’s position at the cost of the group of comparison. Discrimination is largely understood as a biased behavior that may either disadvantage or favor one’s own group. When one responds by weak emotions, it suggests forms of discrimination that are mild, and stronger emotions suggest stronger forms of discrimination (Rudman & Ashmore, 2008). For the contemporary volume, discrimination is, therefore, described as a behavior that maintains an advantage for some groups and the people it constitutes over other groups and the members it comprises of.

Study population and sampling

The people who will be studied are immigrants living in the city and have experienced racial prejudice. There are also individuals who have witnessed the activity being perpetrated to others. The social leaders and community leaders will also be involved in coming up with the best statistics based on facts from their offices.

Data collection methods and instruments

The information and data collection is from thirty-two individuals from both the host and country and the immigrants. The participants are from different walks of life such as intellectuals, students, parents, elders, community leaders, school administration, local agency representatives and staff. They will also be from different races comprising of 10% Hispanic Americans, 55% Hmong Americans, 4% African Americans, and 4% Native Americans. The ages comprise of adults from 18 to 65 years old. The personal contacts from the search investigators will be helpful in determining the people who will participate. The selection will be done randomly to individuals who have had experiences of racial prejudice in the past. The study is going to utilize the factorial design in its analysis. The design allows to respondents to answer their questions without having to compromise. In this case, a 2*2 design will be applied to the study.

Implications of Results

The ideology is to have minimum communication problems and make the sessions interactive by individuals from different racial groups. The first session will involve mixed gender and mixed race individuals with a mixture of the people from the host country and those from the different countries. The second session will involve participation by immigrant females only. The third session will involve the immigrant male participants. The final session will involve mixed gender from the host community.

Potential Limitations

The research was conducted through literature review from the existing data collected and researches that focused on the individuals and group interviews. However, the sample size of the interviewees was small though the response tuned out to be high. The generalization was implicated on the basis of qualitative method of immigrants and non-immigrants informant in the region. Through the parameters instigated, the investigation looks at the major categories in the process of racial stereotyping and prejudice.

Mechanisms to assure the quality of the study

During the research, the data and information will be kept in both soft and hard copy materials in case one needs backup in the future. The study will also be conducted on both parties involved who are the immigrants and the host to curb biasness of the study.


Coenders, M., Scheepers, P., Sniderman, P. M., & Verberk, G. (2001). Blatant and subtle prejudice: dimensions, determinants, and consequences; some comments on Pettigrew and Meertens. European Journal of Social Psychology, 31, 3, 281-297.

Kurtz-Costes, B., DeFreitas, S. C., Halle, T. G., & Kinlaw, C. R. (2011). Gender and racial favouritism in Black and White preschool girls. British Journal of Developmental Psychology, 29, 2, 270-287.

McKown, C. (2013). Social Equity Theory and Racial-Ethnic Achievement Gaps. Child Development, 84, 4, 1120-1136.

Mulvey, K. L., Hitti, A., & Killen, M. (2010). The development of stereotyping and exclusion. Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Cognitive Science, 1, 4, 597-606.

Raabe, T., & Beelmann, A. (2011). Development of Ethnic, Racial, and National Prejudice in Childhood and Adolescence: A Multinational Meta-Analysis of Age Differences. Child Development, 82, 6, 1715-1737.

Rudman, L A., & Ashmore, R D. (2008) Discrimination and the Implicit Association Test. (Group Processes & Intergroup Relations).

Sibley, C., & Duckitt, J. (2008). Personality and Prejudice: A Meta-Analysis and Theoretical Review. Personality and Social Psychology Review, 12, 3, 248-279.

Weber, C. R., Lavine, H., Huddy, L., & Federico, C. M. (2014). Placing Racial Stereotypes in Context: Social Desirability and the Politics of Racial Hostility. American Journal of Political Science, 58, 1, 63-78.

Zannoni, Federico. (2008). Stereotypes and racial prejudice in children’s minds. Images, discussions, perspectives. (Ricerche di Pedagogia e Didattica. Journal of Theories and Research in Education; Vol 3 (2008). Dipartimento di Scienze Dell’Educazione «Giovanni Maria Bertin» – Università di Bologna.

Zirkel, S. (2004). What Will You Think of Me? Racial Integration, Peer Relationships and Achievement among White Students and Students of Color. Journal of Social Issues, 60, 1, 57-74.

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