Graduation Year

Spring 2013

Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Shana Levin

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© 2013 Leslie Hall


This study builds on previous research analyzing the effects of cognitive busyness on recall of stereotype-consistent and stereotype-inconsistent information by examining the real-world context of Facebook profiles. College students (N = 160) were randomly assigned to either a cognitively busy or unbusy condition. They then looked at either the profile of an African-American male or female target. After, they were given a recall test to assess the number of stereotype-consistent and stereotype-inconsistent descriptors correctly recalled. Results were expected to show that participants recalled more stereotype-consistent information when cognitively busy, even more so for male targets. Conversely, participants were expected to recall more stereotype-inconsistent information when cognitively unbusy, even more so for male targets. Neither cognitive busyness nor the interaction between cognitive busyness and target gender affected the type of information participants recalled. Both results were inconsistent with previous research. Future research should find ways to strengthen the construct validity of measures as they operate in real-world contexts such as Facebook.


  • Best Senior Thesis in Psychology

This thesis is restricted to the Claremont Colleges current faculty, students, and staff.