Gender Role Stereotyping

Topics: Gender, Gender role, Woman Pages: 10 (2054 words) Published: April 8, 2013










The observational study was undertaken to investigate whether there was an adult central character in British television adverts that portrayed gender stereotyping.

The study was carried out by the GCSE Psychology class during December 2000 in which 60 adverts had to be taped. Out of the 60 adverts 30 were chosen.

For my own study the adverts were randomly selected and recorded between 0900 hours and 2000 on channels 3, 4 and 5 in blocks of approximately 3 or 4 adverts.

Some seasonal biased was observed over the period due to the adverts targeting certain groups with certain products for Christmas presents.

Whilst some evidence from the study reveals some gender stereotyping in the results, the extent would appear to be less than in the Manstead McCulloch (1981) and Harris and Stobart (1986) studies.


There was no ethical considerations with this research.


Stereotyping is a necessary part of making sense of the world. We categorise and organise all stimuli to make the Social and Physical world more manageable. Stereotypes are oversimplified, rigid and generalised ideas about people who share a typical characteristic. Characterising someone on a single feature and therefore assuming they have certain abilities. A stereotype can be either positive or negative.

Stereotyping does not necessarily lead to prejudice, but prejudice draws on stereotypes

Stereotyping develops indirectly from gatekeepers: the media, parents and other adults. For example gender stereotypes develops partly through seeing men and women portrayed in traditional roles on TV.

Stereotyping is hard to change as we seek out information, which supports our beliefs rather than challenging them. We could do more to change stereotyping by more positive reinforcement, better education and equal opportunities.

Manstead McCulloch carried out a study in 1981 into gender stereotyping in British Television Adverts, the conclusions drawn then were that there was a greater number of females portrayed as product users and also being of a dependant status and were shown at home. The Harris and Stobart 1986 study sought to confirm the conclusions of the Manstead McCulloch study. Harris and Stobart agreed with two of the conclusions but did not confirm that more women stayed at home.

The study carried out in December 2000 was a partial replication of the Harris and Stobart 1986 study and its aim was to confirm whether there has been a change in social attitudes in gender stereotyping of Adult Central Characters (ACC) in British Television Advertisements.

Therefore the aim of this study is to consider the role portrayed by an Adult Central Character (ACC) in the current British TV adverts and will see if there is any proof in the following hypotheses:

1) There is an association between the gender and credibility of the ACC. 2) There is an association between the gender and argument spoken by the ACC. 3) There is an association between the gender and status of the ACC. 4) There is an association between the gender of the ACC and the product type promoted.

The study in the independent variables in the gender of the ACC and the dependent variables are:

1) The credibility of the ACC.
2) The argument spoken of the ACC.
3) The status of the ACC.
4) The product type promoted by the ACC.


Materials:1.Video Cassette Recorder
2. Video Cassette
3. Television...
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