Discuss How Personal Implicit Biases Can Form Understandings at a Local, National or Global Level
In contrast, System 2 is conscious processing. It's what we use for mental tasks that require concentration, such as completing a tax form. Rather than being automatic and fast, this undertaking requires effortful, deliberate concentration. Together, these two systems help us make sense of the world. What is fascinating, though, is how much our cognition relies on System 1. Of the millions of possible pieces of information we can process each second, most neuroscientists agree that the vast majority of our cognitive processing occurs outside of our conscious awareness. Besides its vastness, System 1 cognitive processing is also notable because it helps us understand that many of the mental associations that affect how we perceive and act are operating implicitly (i.e., unconsciously). As such, System 1 is responsible for the associations known as implicit biases. Because the implicit associations we hold arise outside of conscious awareness, implicit biases do not necessarily align with our explicit beliefs and stated intentions. This means that even individuals who profess egalitarian intentions and try to treat all individuals fairly can still unknowingly act in ways that reflect their implicit—rather than their explicit—biases. Thus, even well-intentioned individuals can act in ways that produce inequitable outcomes for different groups.
Prosecutors are more likely to charge black defendants and less likely to offer them plea bargains. Plea bargains offered to white defendants tend to be more generous than those offered to black or Latino defendants. Furthermore, juries are more likely to exhibit bias against defendants of a race different from the racial background of the majority of the jury. IAT tests have shown implicit associations between the words black and guilty. Implicit bias and racism are related concepts, but they do not have the same meaning. Implicit bias is an unconsciously held set of associations about a particular group. Racism is prejudice against individuals from a specific racial group and can be either explicit or implicit. Implicit bias can lead to implicitly racist behavior, like when a teacher disciplines black children more harshly than white children, but many individuals harbor implicit biases without ever displaying overt racism. By becoming aware of our own implicit biases and actively resisting them, we can avoid perpetuating harmful racist stereotypes and prejudices (Greenwald, Anthony G, et al 1998).
In addition to early life experiences, the media and news programming are often-cited origins of implicit associations.
Anselmi, Pasquale, et al. “Implicit Sexual Attitude of Heterosexual, Gay and Bisexual Individuals: Disentangling the Contribution of Specific Associations to the Overall Measure.” PLoS ONE, vol. 8, no. 11, 2013, doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0078990.
Correll, Shelley, and Stephen Benard. “Gender and Racial Bias in Hiring.” Penn Office of the Provost, University of Pennsylvania, 21 Mar. 2006, provost.upenn.edu/uploads/media_items/gender-racial-bias.original.pdf.
Greenwald, Anthony G, et al. “Measuring Individual Differences in Implicit Cognition: The Implicit Association Test.” Journal of Personality and Soclal Psychology, vol. 74, no. 6, 1998, pp. 1464–1480., faculty.washington.edu/agg/pdf/Gwald_McGh_Schw_JPSP_1998.OCR.pdf.
“How The Concept Of Implicit Bias Came Into Being.” NPR, National Public Radio, Inc., 17 Oct. 2016, www.npr.org/2016/10/17/498219482/how-the-concept-of-implicit-bias-came-into-being.