Wednesday, September 03, 2008

What's Your Bias?

Lu received this as an in-class assignment. She was told she must fill it in, or receive a "zero" for the day. What are your thoughts?

What’s Your Bias?

Directions: what would be your reactions to the following situations? In each case, number your choices in order of preference.

1. You are the captain of a sport team. You are to pick your team members from the following players:
___ an African American
___ an Hispanic
___ a Swede
___ a Chinese
___ a German
___ a Native American

2. Several families want to buy the house next to yours. Which would be your choice as new neighbors?
___ an Oriental family whose parents are both doctors
___ a large family from the rural South
___ a divorced working mother with two children
___ a family whose parents are of two different races
___ a family who has recently emigrated from Puerto Rico
___ a single professional man

3. You read a highly technical, intelligent article on a thought-provoking subject. The essay is unsigned. Who do you think is the author?
___ Elizabeth Adams
___ Lamar Johnson
___ Eli Steinberg
­___ Jose Martinez
___ Wilson Stuart III
___ Michael O’Connor
___ Cookie Norris

4. You get on a bus with several empty seats. Who do you choose to sit next to?
___ an overweight middle-aged woman
___ a tall muscular African American
___ a leather jacketed teenager
___ a shabbily dressed elderly man
___ a person in a business suit


DFTF said...

The person who designed the quiz lets their own bias show. The assumption is that most people could or would be willing to make a decision based on so little information. The teacher may think she/he's being clever, enlightening these children to their own biases, but the quiz tells me more about the author than about anything else.

GreenJello said...

Exactly. And it irks me to no end about the assumptions being made on the test writer's part.

To expect a quick numbering of "preference" smacks of a superiority complex. I don't think the test writer could conceive that there are people who are capable of seeing past the surface.

Sad, really.