Perceived Versus Meta-Analytic Effect Sizes: An Assessment of the Accuracy of Gender Stereotypes

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The accuracy of people's stereotypes about gender differences was assessed in 2 studies by comparing perceptions of sizes of gender differences with meta-analytic findings. In Study 1, perceptions of variability among men and women and perceptions of mean differences were incorporated into measures of perceived effect sizes. In Study 2, Ss made direct judgments about the size of gender differences. Contrary to previous assertions about people's gender stereotypes, these studies' findings indicate that people do not uniformly overestimate gender differences. The results show that Ss are more likely to be accurate or to underestimate gender differences than overestimate them, and perceptions of the size of gender differences are correlated with meta-analytic effect sizes. Furthermore, degree of accuracy is influenced by biases favoring women, in-group favoritism, and the method used to measure perceptions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)21-36
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Personality and Social Psychology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 1994


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science

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