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Women’s Views on Long-Existing Gender Stereotypes

The US society is seen as an illustration of an egalitarian society where all people enjoy equal rights and have equal opportunities. Nonetheless, the power is still distributed unevenly between the genders. Women are still seen as creatures fit for child-rearing and keeping households. Men still think that women cannot perform certain tasks and take up some responsibilities. Remarkably, women tend to share such views as well (Helgeson, 2015). Aluko (2015) stresses that even women who enjoy significant financial independence still believe that females should stick to their households and children or some feminine areas.

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It is still unclear why these stereotypes persist and how they are created. It is important to answer these questions as it unveils the way society affects people’s behaviors, choices, and ideas. The answer to the questions concerning the persistence of gender stereotypes in women can help reveal new facets of human psychology. It is especially important to explore females’ ideas on the experiences that shape their attitude towards gender stereotypes (with the focus on the distribution of gender roles). A clear understanding of females’ views on the reasons for the persistence of gender stereotypes will unveil some psychological traits.

The study may contribute significantly to the field of general psychology as it will provide insights into the psychological peculiarities of women as regards their views on selves, their roles, and society. It is important to note that a lot of research is done in the sphere of stereotypes, and it has been acknowledged that women share similar views on gender roles distribution (Helgeson, 2015). Nevertheless, women’s accounts on the reasons for such persistence of stereotypes is not well researched. At the same time, personal accounts may shed light on the issue and reveal factors affecting the spread of stereotypes and their prevalence in the human society.

Aluko, Y.A. (2015). Re-evaluating the empowerment potential of women’s paid work. International Journal of Gender and Women’s Studies, 3(2), 190-201.

Helgeson, V. (2015). Psychology of gender. New York, NY: Psychology Press.

Unit 7 Discussion 1

The study aims at examining the views of women on gender stereotypes. Women about the middle-class can be of particular interest as they have certain financial independence and are usually educated (or, at least, had an opportunity to obtain an education). It can be assumed that these females should have egalitarian perspectives on the distribution of gender roles. Therefore, it can be beneficial to focus on the population of a particular community.

Multistage sampling allows the researchers to carry out the sampling procedures in a comparatively easy way. Thus, the first stage of the sampling procedure will be cluster sampling. Cluster sampling can be an appropriate option for this study as a particular group of people is in the researcher’s lens (Mertens, 2014). The cluster sampling presupposes choosing a specific “naturally occurring” group (Mertens, 2014, p. 330).

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The researcher will randomly choose a block of households in a community where people (about the middle class) dwell. When the block is chosen, simple random sampling will be implemented. This approach will eliminate possible sampling errors (Lichtman, 2010). When the list of the population is available, females (aged 18 and above) will be chosen. The list of eligible females will be used for random sampling.

Importantly, the focus on the middle-class community may lead to the underrepresentation of ethnic minorities, but this issue will be mitigated through the focus on a diverse community. Thus, census data (with the focus on ethnicity) will be used to choose the eligible communities. As for the number of participants, it is possible to recruits 30 women for interviews. Between 15 and 20 interviewees will take part in the focus group discussions. The number of participants is not very big, but due to the nature of qualitative research, it is hard to involve more participants. At that, random sampling will ensure that all major groups are represented, and the results can be generalized.

Lichtman, M. (2010). Understanding and evaluating qualitative educational research. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE.

Mertens, D.M. (2014). Research and evaluation in education and psychology: Integrating diversity with quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE.

Unit 7 Discussion 2

Wertz (2011) notes that interviews allow researchers to examine people’s views and elicit various meanings. Open-ended questions ensure a significant degree of sincerity and precision. The answers will be tape-recorded. The researcher will also make field notes as it will result in more data since non-verbal communication can also be taken into account. It is possible to put the following questions:

  1. How are roles distributed between genders in US society?
  2. What stereotypical views on gender roles do you have?
  3. How do you think your parents shaped the way your ideas on gender roles developed?
  4. How were roles distributed between your parents (within your family and between siblings)?
  5. In what way did your college (high-school) years affect the development of your perspective on gender roles?
  6. Do you think society is patriarchal? In what ways?
  7. In what ways do you think society influenced the way you see gender roles?
  8. How did your ethnicity affect your perspective on gender roles?
  9. How does your financial independence (or dependence) shape your views on the distribution of gender roles?
  10. In your opinion, why do gender stereotypes persist?

After the preliminary analysis of the participants’ answers during the interviews, focus group discussions will be implemented. The researchers will encourage the participants to discuss the issues mentioned during the interviews. The use of focus group discussions will bring about more insights into the issue (Merriam, 2009). Importantly, different views will be brought to the fore, which will enable the participants to reveal and explore new facets of the issue. It is necessary to add that the researcher will employ a conversational interview format. This method implies the use of a list of prepared questions as well as asking additional questions.

Reference List

Merriam, S.B. (2009). Qualitative research: A guide to design and implementation. San Francisco, CA: John Wiley & Sons.

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Wertz, F.J. (2011). Phenomenological currents in twentieth-century psychology. In H.L. Dreyfus & M.A. Wrathall (Eds.), A companion to phenomenology and existentialism (pp. 394-412). Malden, MA: John Wiley & Sons.

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