Home > Publications . Search All . Browse All . Country . Browse PSC Pubs . PSC Report Series

PSC In The News

RSS Feed icon

Burgard and Seelye find job insecurity linked to psychological distress among workers in later years

Former PSC trainee Jay Borchert parlays past incarceration and doctoral degree into pursuing better treatment of inmates

Inglehart says shaky job market for millennials has contributed to their disaffection

More News

Highlights

Savolainen wins Outstanding Contribution Award for study of how employment affects recidivism among past criminal offenders

Giving Blueday at ISR focuses on investing in the next generation of social scientists

Pfeffer and Schoeni cover the economic and social dimensions of wealth inequality in this special issue

PRB Policy Communication Training Program for PhD students in demography, reproductive health, population health

More Highlights

Next Brown Bag

Mon, Jan 23, 2017 at noon:
H. Luke Shaefer

Eleanor Singer photo

The Effect of Question Framing and Response Options on the Relationship between Racial Attitudes and Beliefs about Genes as Causes of Behavior

Publication Abstract

Singer, Eleanor, Mick P. Couper, Trivellore Raghunathan, Toni Antonucci, M. Burmeister, and J. Van Hoewyk. 2010. "The Effect of Question Framing and Response Options on the Relationship between Racial Attitudes and Beliefs about Genes as Causes of Behavior." Public Opinion Quarterly, 74(3): 460-476.

Prior research suggests that the attribution of individual and group differences to genetic causes is correlated with prejudiced attitudes toward minority groups. Our study suggests that these findings may be due to the wording of the questions and to the choice of response options. Using a series of vignettes in an online survey, we find a relationship between racial attitudes and genetic attributions when respondents are asked to make causal attributions of differences between racial groups. However, when they are asked to make causal attributions for characteristics shown by individuals, no such relationship is found. The response scale used appears to make less, if any, difference in the results. These findings indicate that the way questions about genetic causation of behavior are framed makes a significant contribution to the answers obtained because it significantly changes the meaning of the questions. We argue that such framing needs to be carefully attended to, not only in posing research questions but also in discourse about genetics more generally.

DOI:10.1093/poq/nfq009 (Full Text)

PMCID: PMC3045778. (Pub Med Central)

Browse | Search : All Pubs | Next