College of Arts and Sciences
Master of Arts in General Psychology (MAGP)
NACO controlled Corporate Body
University of North Florida. Department of Psychology
Dr. Curtis E. Phills
Dr. Elizabeth R. Brown
Dr. Lori Lange
Dr. George Rainbolt
Priming out-groups and taking the perspective of out-group members increases implicit and explicit identification with out-groups. Because the popularity of video games has increased dramatically over the past few decades and they have become an influential form of media, the current study investigated video games as another potential strategy to increase identification with and reduce prejudice against out-groups. Specifically, I investigated how manipulating the sexual orientation of the video game character participants used influenced implicit and explicit identification with homosexuals and implicit and explicit prejudice against homosexuals. Additionally, I investigated whether implicit and explicit identification with homosexuals would mediate the impact of video games on prejudice. Though I recruited enough participants to detect a medium effect size (169 participants in the final analyses), pre-registered analyses (osf.io/ynaw7) indicated that the sexual orientation of a video game character did not influence identification with or prejudice against homosexuals. Exploratory analyses demonstrated that among participants that identified with the video game character and played as a Gay character had increased explicit identification with and reduced prejudice against homosexuals. The possibility that increasing the strength of the manipulation by having participants play the game for multiple sessions, customize characters, and incorporating storytelling into the game are discussed.
Olah, Matthew D., "Putting the “Gay” in Gamers: Increasing Identification with Homosexuals Through Video Games" (2018). UNF Graduate Theses and Dissertations. 797.