Children Show Signs of Implicit Racism from the Age of Five

Examining children preferences to measure their attitudes.


A new research by the University of Bristol and York University in Toronto suggest that at the age of five, children show signs of implicit racism. They more likely to favor people with the same skin color.

Scientists measured the automatic attitudes of 359 white children aged five to 12-years-old. They mainly tested their preferences of unknown white and black children in photographs.

While there was no confirmation of programmed antagonism toward dark individuals, they showed programmed energy in light of white individuals.

Scientists found that the children under the age of nine to 12 were not found as positive toward other white children. Means, singular qualities, including shared interests, turn out to be essential as getting younger.

Dr. Amanda Williams, from the School of Education at the University of Bristol, said, “This pattern of results is concerning because adults who show stronger automatic bias towards white people often demonstrate less positive behavior when interacting with black people.”

“Our outcomes propose that mediations intended to diminish negative emotions toward various racial gatherings won’t be the best approach as there is little confirmation these mentalities have set in adolescence.”

Scientists conducted three studies. During 1st, they measured an ‘exemplary’ based measure of automatic attitudes. This is the first attempt that has not previously been used to measure young children’s attitudes.

The 2nd study was a ‘category’ based measure of automatic attitudes. It involved white and black faces being shown next to each other and children must categorize the faces by race to provide information about children’s attitudes.

Dr. Williams said, “Instead, successful interventions for young children aged five to eight-years-old might include extending the notion of the ‘in-group’ – people who they view as being like them – to include people from other racial groups.”

“For older children aged nine to 12-years-old, highlighting role models from different racial groups might help to strengthen inclusive racial attitudes. Future research is needed to examine these intervention possibilities in more detail.”

Although the research suggests that the children need to interact with diverse others in order to be successful in their future careers.


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