Am I prejudiced? Avoiding blocks to effective thinking through incorrect assumptions

One of the most commonly met blocks to effective thinking is making incorrect assumptions about what we see based on prejudicial patterns of thinking and familiarity.

In a renowned experiment recorded by P.R.Wilson, an unknown college visitor was introduced to 110 students split into five separate groups.

After he had left, the students were given different versions of his identity and were then asked to say how tall he was.

The first group were told he was a student and estimated his height at 5'9". When the next group were told he was a lecturer, they put his height at 5'10". The next group were given his name as a doctor and reckoned his height to be 5'11". The last group were told he was a professor and said his height was 6'03".

It seems that we raise people's heights in relation to their status.

  • Can you think of other ways in which inbuilt prejudices might affect the way you see people, things or events?

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