College of Arts and Sciences



Faculty Mentor

Kathryn Bollich

Faculty Editor

Elise Murochick

Student Editor

Michelle Newblom


The current study examined the relationship between stereotype threat, working memory, social support, and the race of undergraduate college students. Our goal was to examine the role of social support when looking at the relationship between stereotype threat and cognitive deficits among ethnic minority college students. Our first hypothesis was that ethnic minority students in the stereotype threat condition would do poorer on the working memory test than white students in the stereotype threat condition. In addition, we expected no significant difference in the working memory scores among ethnic minority and white students in the stereotype threat condition when high levels of social support were indicated. A total of 147 participants completed surveys assessing demographic variables, perceived social support, and working memory ability after being randomly administered instructions that either elicited a stereotype threat or a neutral condition. It was found that stereotype threat and race interaction did not significantly impact working memory. However, greater perceived social support was correlated with higher scores on the working memory test. The findings are inconsistent with previous research, implying the need to consider the impact of geopolitical variables on stereotype threat’s effects on ethnic minority college students.