Institutional Discrimination, Research Paper Example

Pages: 1

Words: 840

Research Paper

A fire department requires that applicants for the position of firefighter be 5’8” or taller.

Institutionaldiscriminationis present against people who are shorter than 5’8”. Since women and certain nationalities tend to be shorter than 5’8”, they will not be considered for the position, regardless of whether or not they are qualified. The intention of this requirement is most likely to ensure that all applicants meet a basic physiological standard. However, height has no influence on strength, stamina, or the ability to perform the duties of a firefighter. The fire department should be educated on basic biology and physiology to ensure their understanding.

A Caucasian actor is chosen to play the part of an Asian man.

Institutional discrimination is present against Asian men if this occurs in a professional production, such Broadway. The intention may be that the Caucasian actor was the best person for the role or that there were not enough available Asian actors. Promoting auditions to more actors in the Asian community may remedy this. However, if this occurs in an amateur setting, such as a high production, there may not be any Asian actors available. Whether or not there is institutional discrimination a larger level, the lack of resources and funds from the people putting on the play would not be institutional discrimination.

A corporation decides to fill a position opening “in-house” rather than to advertise.

Institutional discrimination is present against those who are not employed by the corporation. Ifthe corporation is composed predominantly of one race or nationality, then whoever is not part of that race or nationality is discriminated against. The intention is most likely to reward current employees and act as an incentive to work harder. The corporation would also have to spend less time and money training current employees who would have a greater chance of being familiar with the company. To prevent this discrimination from occurring, the corporation can place outside advertisements in addition to interviewing within the company.

Children of alumni receive preference for admission into a private college.

Institutional discrimination is present. Applicants of certain socioeconomic, racial, or religious backgrounds may not be given an equal opportunity, regardless of qualifications. The intention of the college may be to reward alumni and encourage donations. To remedy the discrimination, family and alumni status should not be considered when reviewing applications.

Persons accused of a crime who cannot post bail are imprisoned and thus appear in court dressed in prison clothes.

Institutional discrimination is present against people of a lower income and socioeconomic status. Juries may unintentionally associate a person with guilt based on their presentation.The intention may be to speed the trial along faster. This may be remedied by providing all accused persons with clean and presentable clothing.

A health-club official offers a reduced membership rate to families.

Institutional discrimination is present because it excludes people without families. However, the intention was most likely to promote business and make the health-club affordable to people with families. The health-club official may offer other opportunities for reduced rates to those without families.

A teacher requires an oral presentation as part of the final grade.

Institutional discrimination is present against those who have a phobia against public speaking, a speech impediment, or for those who English is not their first language. The intention is to encourage students to educate each other and facilitate skills of communication. While an oral presentation may be required, the teacher may elect to not base the actual grade on presentation skills and public speaking; rather base the grade on the merit of the material provided.

A public meeting is held on the third floor of a building that has no elevator.

Institutional discrimination is present against those with limited mobility such as the elderly, physical handicaps, or those with certain illnesses. The intention may have been to obtain the firstavailable room for the lowest price. However, because many people may not be available to attend, then the meeting should simply be held at another more accessible location.

Discussion Questions

Discussion Question 1:Describe the three main focuses of social psychology, and discuss how the fundamental attribution error affects our judgments of others.

The three main focuses of social psychology are how people think about, influence, and react to one another. The fundamental attribution error is the tendency to overestimate personalfactors and to underestimate situational factors in analyzing the behavior of others, leading to false conclusions about another’s personality.

Discussion Question 2:Explain altruism from the perspectives of social exchange theory and social norms.

Altruism is the unselfish concern for others. The social exchange theory states that the underlying agenda behind any altruistic behavior is the desire to maximize benefits and minimize costs. Social norms help to facilitate altruistic behavior. The reciprocity norm is the expectation that people should help and not harm those who have previously provided them with assistance. The social-responsibilitynorm is the expectation that people will help those who are in need, even when repayment is not guaranteed.

References

Freeman, J.Institutional discrimination. Retrieved from http://www.uic.edu/orgs/cwluherstory/jofreeman/womensociety/institidiscrim.htm

Pincus, F. (2000). Discrimination comes in many forms: Individual, institutional, and structural. Readings for diversity and social justice, Retrieved from http://sociology.norwich.groupfusion.net/modules/locker/files/get_group_file.phtml?gid=43008&fid=6468873

Social psychology . (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.macmillanhighered.com/resources/1429244364/Lecture_Guides/PDF/AP TRG14.pdf

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