University of Twente Student Theses


The influence of intergroup contact on minority perceptions and definitions of ethnic identity

Mogana, Miriam (2015) The influence of intergroup contact on minority perceptions and definitions of ethnic identity.

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Abstract:Minority perceptions have been mostly investigated by comparing minority group members with majority group members in terms of group power, group status and group size. This approach does not take into account situational specific differences, such as intergroup contact, through which the awareness of differences between cultures is increased, which is contrary to what is expected by Contact Hypothesis and the Common Ingroup Identity Model. The present research investigates the extent to which intergroup contact affects minority perception and preferences acculturation strategies to provide insight into the identification process of minority groups. It was expected that intergroup contact was related to increased minority perceptions, as well as decreased attempts to adapt to the minority and increased attempts to maintain own cultural values that were deemed significant for the ethnical identity. Therefore German students living in Dutch areas near to the German boarder were asked to complete a survey, to measure the amount of contact, minority perceptions and cultural maintenance. Results indicated that there was not enough evidence to conclude if minority perceptions based on group power, group status and group size were affected by intergroup contact whereas preferences for acculturation strategies were affected by intergroup contact. It can be concluded that intergroup contact may only lead to the forming of intergroup harmony under optimal circumstances. In case that circumstances are not optimal, intergroup contact may thus lead towards intergroup bias.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology BSc (56604)
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