Publication Details

Parker, R., Larkin, T. A. & Cockburn, J. P. "Gender Bias in Medical Images Affects Students' Implicit but not Explicit Gender Attitudes." AERA Open 4 .3 (2018): 1-7.


Medical education curricula have the potential to impact the gender attitudes of future healthcare providers. This study investigated whether gender-biased imagery from anatomy textbooks had an effect on the implicit and explicit gender attitudes of students. We used an online experimental design in which students (N = 456; 55% female) studying anatomy were randomly assigned to a visual priming task using either gender-neutral or gender-biased images. The impact of this priming task on implicit attitudes was assessed using the Implicit Association Test (IAT) and the impact on explicit attitudes was measured using the Gender Bias in Medical Education Scale. Viewing biased images was significantly positively associated with implicit gender bias as indicated by higher IAT scores in the treatment compared to the control condition (mean IAT difference = 43 milliseconds; Cohen’s d = .33). In contrast, there was no significant effect of gender-biased images on explicit gender attitudes.



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