Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
The effects of a six-week mindfulness class on racial stereotype bias, attention, and working memory was measured by the Implicit Association Test (IAT), Attention Network Task (ANT), and Automated Operation Span Task, respectively. Explicit racism (Modern Racism Scale, Right-Wing Authoritarianism, Social Dominance Orientation), mindfulness (Five- Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire), depression, anxiety, and stress (Depression, Anxiety, and Stress Scale) were also examined. Sixty traditional-aged undergraduate women participated in this study (20 completed the mindfulness course and the remaining completed a non-MBSR physical education course). The results revealed that training was not associated with decreased racial stereotype bias on the IAT. Training was associated with increased performance in attention-switching on the ANT. In both groups, explicit racism and working memory predicted racial bias at time 1, and explicit racism predicted change in racial bias between times 1 and 2. Unexpectedly, increase in mindfulness (FFMQ) approached prediction of an increase in racial bias across both groups. In summary, the findings contradict the hypothesis that participation in a six- week mindfulness course will reduce stereotype application and activation.
Mann, Carmelinda. “The Effect of Mindfulness on Racial Stereotype Activation and Application.” PhD diss., Bryn Mawr College, 2012.