Volume 77, Issue 5 p. 1208-1219

Changing Children's Intergroup Attitudes Toward Refugees: Testing Different Models of Extended Contact

Lindsey Cameron

Lindsey Cameron

University of Kent

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Adam Rutland

Adam Rutland

University of Kent

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Rupert Brown

Rupert Brown

University of Sussex

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Rebecca Douch

Rebecca Douch

University of Kent

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First published: 25 September 2006
Citations: 266
concerning this article should be addressed to Lindsey Cameron, Department of Psychology, University of Kent, Canterbury CT2 7NP, U.K. Electronic mail may be sent to [email protected].

This research was supported by a Grant R000220199 from the Economic and Social Research Council. Much appreciation is extended to other researchers for their assistance and to teachers and children for their participation.

Abstract

The present research evaluated an intervention, derived from the “extended contact hypothesis,” which aimed to change children's intergroup attitudes toward refugees. The study (n=253) tested 3 models of extended contact among 5- to 11-year-old children: dual identity, common ingroup identity, and decategorization. Children read friendship stories based upon these models featuring in- and outgroup members. Outgroup attitudes were significantly more positive in the extended contact conditions, compared with the control, and this was mediated by “inclusion of other in self.” The dual identity intervention was the most effective extended contact model at improving outgroup attitudes. The effect of condition on outgroup intended behavior was moderated by subgroup identity. Implications for theoretically based prejudice-reduction interventions among children are discussed.