Office of Equity & Diversity
- Implicit Association Test
Have you ever thought to yourself or asserted to others that you are "not prejudiced?" Research would suggest that this is likely not true for anyone. Reliable studies at Yale, Harvard and the University of Virginia among other places have dealt with bias in four areas: unconscious bias, bias that favors your group, bias that favors you, and bias that favors those who can benefit you. Researchers have established that it's not only likely that we hold such inherent or implicit bias but that we are not even likely aware of them AND they can and often do affect how we view others and make managerial decisions. Given this, OED believes it is imperative that those who are participating in a search at any level and to any degree understand the powerful affect that unconscious bias has on the outcome of any selection process. To that end, we urge anyone involved in an employment decision--as a member of a search committee, merit or P T committee, for example, to take, in private, the Implicit Association Test. The IAT has been taken by more than 2.5M people since its development in the mid-1990's as a means of studying the effects of unconscious bias. Understanding how implicit bias affects the outcome of any personnel decision process is a powerful tool in our efforts to be affirmative and to be fully guided by EOC. To access the test, go to http://www.implicit.harvard.edu and click on Demonstration.