Students Staff
University of Essex

October 29, 2015

Unconscious bias

We all have biases but how can we stop them affecting our decision-making?

Think of a surgeon, or a nurse, and do you picture a man or a woman?

What do you think when you see someone who is overweight or particularly short, someone who has facial piercings or tattoos, someone who wears a headscarf?

Unconscious, or implicit, bias affects every area of our lives. Unconsciously we tend to like people who look like us, think like us and come from backgrounds similar to ours. We all like to think we are open-minded and objective but research has shown that beliefs and values gained from family, culture and a lifetime of experiences influence how we view and evaluate both others and ourselves.

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