Beyond generalized sexual prejudice: Need for closure predicts negative attitudes toward bisexual people relative to gay/lesbian people

Sara E. Burke, John F. Dovidio, Marianne LaFrance, Julia M. Przedworski, Sylvia P. Perry, Sean M. Phelan, Diana J. Burgess, Rachel R. Hardeman, Mark W. Yeazel, Michelle van Ryn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Increasing evidence suggests that bisexual people are sometimes evaluated more negatively than heterosexual and gay/lesbian people. A common theoretical account for this discrepancy argues that bisexuality is perceived by some as introducing ambiguity into a binary model of sexuality. The present brief report tests a single key prediction of this theory, that evaluations of bisexual people have a unique relationship with Need for Closure (NFC), a dispositional preference for simple ways of structuring information. Participants (n = 3406) were heterosexual medical students from a stratified random sample of 49 U.S. medical schools. As in prior research, bisexual targets were evaluated slightly more negatively than gay/lesbian targets overall. More importantly for the present investigation, higher levels of NFC predicted negative evaluations of bisexual people after accounting for negative evaluations of gay/lesbian people, and higher levels of NFC also predicted an explicit evaluative preference for gay/lesbian people over bisexual people. These results suggest that differences in evaluations of sexual minority groups partially reflect different psychological processes, and that NFC may have a special relevance for bisexual targets even beyond its general association with prejudice. The practical value of testing this theory on new physicians is also discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)145-150
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Experimental Social Psychology
Volume71
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2017
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

prejudice
evaluation
bisexuality
Heterosexuality
Sexual Minorities
random sample
medical student
sexuality
physician
minority
Minority Groups
Bisexuality
present
Sexuality
Medical Schools
school
Medical Students
evidence
Group

Keywords

  • Bisexuality
  • Need for closure
  • Prejudice
  • Sexual orientation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science

Cite this

Beyond generalized sexual prejudice : Need for closure predicts negative attitudes toward bisexual people relative to gay/lesbian people. / Burke, Sara E.; Dovidio, John F.; LaFrance, Marianne; Przedworski, Julia M.; Perry, Sylvia P.; Phelan, Sean M.; Burgess, Diana J.; Hardeman, Rachel R.; Yeazel, Mark W.; van Ryn, Michelle.

In: Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, Vol. 71, 01.07.2017, p. 145-150.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Burke, Sara E. ; Dovidio, John F. ; LaFrance, Marianne ; Przedworski, Julia M. ; Perry, Sylvia P. ; Phelan, Sean M. ; Burgess, Diana J. ; Hardeman, Rachel R. ; Yeazel, Mark W. ; van Ryn, Michelle. / Beyond generalized sexual prejudice : Need for closure predicts negative attitudes toward bisexual people relative to gay/lesbian people. In: Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. 2017 ; Vol. 71. pp. 145-150.
@article{4ed76cb2a8b54e1e90a465e5fabcfe99,
title = "Beyond generalized sexual prejudice: Need for closure predicts negative attitudes toward bisexual people relative to gay/lesbian people",
abstract = "Increasing evidence suggests that bisexual people are sometimes evaluated more negatively than heterosexual and gay/lesbian people. A common theoretical account for this discrepancy argues that bisexuality is perceived by some as introducing ambiguity into a binary model of sexuality. The present brief report tests a single key prediction of this theory, that evaluations of bisexual people have a unique relationship with Need for Closure (NFC), a dispositional preference for simple ways of structuring information. Participants (n = 3406) were heterosexual medical students from a stratified random sample of 49 U.S. medical schools. As in prior research, bisexual targets were evaluated slightly more negatively than gay/lesbian targets overall. More importantly for the present investigation, higher levels of NFC predicted negative evaluations of bisexual people after accounting for negative evaluations of gay/lesbian people, and higher levels of NFC also predicted an explicit evaluative preference for gay/lesbian people over bisexual people. These results suggest that differences in evaluations of sexual minority groups partially reflect different psychological processes, and that NFC may have a special relevance for bisexual targets even beyond its general association with prejudice. The practical value of testing this theory on new physicians is also discussed.",
keywords = "Bisexuality, Need for closure, Prejudice, Sexual orientation",
author = "Burke, {Sara E.} and Dovidio, {John F.} and Marianne LaFrance and Przedworski, {Julia M.} and Perry, {Sylvia P.} and Phelan, {Sean M.} and Burgess, {Diana J.} and Hardeman, {Rachel R.} and Yeazel, {Mark W.} and {van Ryn}, Michelle",
year = "2017",
month = "7",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1016/j.jesp.2017.02.003",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "71",
pages = "145--150",
journal = "Journal of Experimental Social Psychology",
issn = "0022-1031",
publisher = "Academic Press Inc.",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Beyond generalized sexual prejudice

T2 - Need for closure predicts negative attitudes toward bisexual people relative to gay/lesbian people

AU - Burke, Sara E.

AU - Dovidio, John F.

AU - LaFrance, Marianne

AU - Przedworski, Julia M.

AU - Perry, Sylvia P.

AU - Phelan, Sean M.

AU - Burgess, Diana J.

AU - Hardeman, Rachel R.

AU - Yeazel, Mark W.

AU - van Ryn, Michelle

PY - 2017/7/1

Y1 - 2017/7/1

N2 - Increasing evidence suggests that bisexual people are sometimes evaluated more negatively than heterosexual and gay/lesbian people. A common theoretical account for this discrepancy argues that bisexuality is perceived by some as introducing ambiguity into a binary model of sexuality. The present brief report tests a single key prediction of this theory, that evaluations of bisexual people have a unique relationship with Need for Closure (NFC), a dispositional preference for simple ways of structuring information. Participants (n = 3406) were heterosexual medical students from a stratified random sample of 49 U.S. medical schools. As in prior research, bisexual targets were evaluated slightly more negatively than gay/lesbian targets overall. More importantly for the present investigation, higher levels of NFC predicted negative evaluations of bisexual people after accounting for negative evaluations of gay/lesbian people, and higher levels of NFC also predicted an explicit evaluative preference for gay/lesbian people over bisexual people. These results suggest that differences in evaluations of sexual minority groups partially reflect different psychological processes, and that NFC may have a special relevance for bisexual targets even beyond its general association with prejudice. The practical value of testing this theory on new physicians is also discussed.

AB - Increasing evidence suggests that bisexual people are sometimes evaluated more negatively than heterosexual and gay/lesbian people. A common theoretical account for this discrepancy argues that bisexuality is perceived by some as introducing ambiguity into a binary model of sexuality. The present brief report tests a single key prediction of this theory, that evaluations of bisexual people have a unique relationship with Need for Closure (NFC), a dispositional preference for simple ways of structuring information. Participants (n = 3406) were heterosexual medical students from a stratified random sample of 49 U.S. medical schools. As in prior research, bisexual targets were evaluated slightly more negatively than gay/lesbian targets overall. More importantly for the present investigation, higher levels of NFC predicted negative evaluations of bisexual people after accounting for negative evaluations of gay/lesbian people, and higher levels of NFC also predicted an explicit evaluative preference for gay/lesbian people over bisexual people. These results suggest that differences in evaluations of sexual minority groups partially reflect different psychological processes, and that NFC may have a special relevance for bisexual targets even beyond its general association with prejudice. The practical value of testing this theory on new physicians is also discussed.

KW - Bisexuality

KW - Need for closure

KW - Prejudice

KW - Sexual orientation

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85013655697&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85013655697&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/j.jesp.2017.02.003

DO - 10.1016/j.jesp.2017.02.003

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:85013655697

VL - 71

SP - 145

EP - 150

JO - Journal of Experimental Social Psychology

JF - Journal of Experimental Social Psychology

SN - 0022-1031

ER -