Publication Date

2017

Document Type

Dissertation/Thesis

First Advisor

Finkelstein, Lisa M.

Degree Name

Ph.D. (Doctor of Philosophy)

Department

Department of Psychology

LCSH

Psychology

Abstract

As workplaces become more age-diverse, it becomes increasingly important to better understand how metastereotypes influence cross-generational interactions. In the context of ageism, metastereotypes occur when a person of one age group perceives what they believe other age groups think about members of their age group. These perceptions have been found to influence interpersonal interactions, career planning, as well as retirement. Between the activation and the ultimate outcomes of age metastereotypes, there are likely affective reactions that occur before the measured outcomes. Based on a model of age metastereotypes, some of the reactions to age metastereotypes that may occur are challenge, threat, and boost. Challenge reactions refer to motivation to disprove a negative metastereotype. Threat refers to feelings of resignation and sadness at the possibility of confirming a negative metastereotype or being unable to live up to a positive metastereotype. Boost refers to an increase in confidence and positive feelings associated with positive metastereotype about one's group. The goal of this series of studies was to determine the relationship between metastereotype valence, perceived resources, and subsequent reactions and behavioral intentions in older workers and younger workers. This research presented workplace scenarios to examine factors such as valence of metastereotypes and perceived resources in determining the reactions to age metastereotypes and subsequent behavioral intentions. The results of these research studies found that compared to younger workers, older workers had reactions that showed distinctive patterns corresponding to the valence of metastereotypes and availability of resources. Both younger and older workers who experienced high threat reactions indicated greater intentions to engage with workers of different ages. Workers' reactions to age metastereotypes and subsequent behavioral intentions can influence interactions among coworkers of different ages.

Comments

Advisors: Lisa Finkelstein.||Committee members: Lacie Barber; James Burton; Amanda Durik; Brad Sagarin; Alecia Santuzzi.||Includes illustrations.||Includes bibliographical references.

Extent

186 pages

Language

eng

Publisher

Northern Illinois University

Rights Statement

In Copyright

Rights Statement 2

NIU theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from Huskie Commons for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without the written permission of the authors.

Media Type

Text

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