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209.46 sec. 1 - Implicit Bias (Fall 2011)
Instructor: Victoria Plaut (view instructor's teaching evaluations | profile)
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Meeting Time: W 3:35-6:15
Meeting Location: 12
Course Start: August 24, 2011
Course Control Number (Non-1Ls): 49529
Implicit bias--automatic or unconscious stereotyping that guides our perception of and behavior toward social groups--is one of the fastest growing areas of law and psychology. It also lies at the heart of one of the raging debates in American Law: whether the results of psychological studies showing the operation of unconscious gender, racial, and other biases can be used as courtroom evidence to prove discrimination. Students will be introduced to cutting edge research that bears not only on the highly relevant substantive areas of employment discrimination and criminal law, but also on questions regarding voting, health care, property, tax, and intellectual property. Students will learn how implicit bias works, how to interpret and use empirical research findings, how to understand the major critiques of implicit bias research, and how to understand courts' use of implicit bias findings. We will also frame the implicit bias debate in practical terms, including deposing expert witnesses and combating stereotypes in the courtroom. There is a 15-20 page paper. A unit may be added if a student wishes to complete the law school's writing requirement. There are no prerequisites.
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