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Can Eye Tracking Detect Implicit Bias Among People Navigating Engineering Environments?

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Conference

2019 CoNECD - The Collaborative Network for Engineering and Computing Diversity

Location

Crystal City, Virginia

Publication Date

April 14, 2019

Start Date

April 14, 2019

End Date

April 22, 2019

Conference Session

Track: Special Topic - Computing & Technology Technical Session 2

Tagged Topics

Diversity and Special Topic: Computing & Technology

Page Count

14

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/31747

Download Count

23

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Paper Authors

biography

Kylel Devine Scott Arizona State University, Polytechnic

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Kylel Devine Scott is a Sophomore Robotic Engineering student at Arizona State University and a first-year Research Assistant in the Shifting Perceptions, Attitudes and Cultures (SPACE) Lab. He also occupies membership in the National Society of Black Engineers (N.S.B.E.) and is enrolled in Barrett the Honors College at Arizona State University. Kylel strives to attain the social, cultural, and professional awareness necessary to thrive in his field, and believes embracing individuality to be key to optimal functionality.

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Kamille Green Arizona State University, Polytechnic

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Kamille Green is a Sophomore Robotic Engineering Student at Arizona State University and a first-year Research Assistant in the Shifting Perceptions, Attitudes and Cultures (SPACE) Lab.

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Brooke Charae Coley Arizona State University, Polytechnic

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Brooke Coley, PhD is an Assistant Professor in Engineering at the Polytechnic School of the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering at Arizona State University. Dr. Coley is Principal Investigator of the Shifting Perceptions, Attitudes and Cultures in Engineering (SPACE) Lab that aspires to elevate the experiences of marginalized populations, dismantle systematic injustices, and transform the way inclusion is cultivated in engineering through the implementation of novel technologies and methodologies in engineering education. Intrigued by the intersections of engineering education, mental health and social justice, Dr. Coley’s primary research interest focuses on virtual reality as a tool for developing empathetic and inclusive mindsets among engineering faculty. She is also interested in hidden populations in engineering education and innovation for more inclusive pedagogies.

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Abstract

Keywords: Engineering, undergraduate, graduate, faculty There is resurging interest in the presence and impact of implicit bias in both formal and informal engineering environments. Implicit bias refers to the unconscious associations and stereotypes an individual ascribes based on affiliation with a particular identity that impacts attitudes, actions, and behaviors. Though individuals may hold egalitarian views, they can still act in ways that reflect an implicit bias that is incongruent with their greater beliefs and/or intentions. While literature and tests on implicit bias exists, to our knowledge, a method to specifically gauge biases that exist in the perceptions and dynamics affecting engineering environments does not.

This study introduces a novel application of biometric testing to gain insight and direct evidence into the biases that exist among faculty and students engaging in engineering environments. Specifically, informed by literature on microaggressions and implicit bias, an eye-tracking paradigm is used to draw evidence on existing biases related to sexism, ageism, racism, ableism, classism and xenophobia. In this study, when prompted, participants are asked to make choices from a pool of options based on the information presented in a specific scenario. During this selection, the participant's eye movements, specifically their fixation regions and times, are collected to later corroborate with their selections and identify the presence of bias. Preliminary findings from this study enable the identification of individual specific implicit biases that exist. The insights of this work could complement efforts to create awareness of bias in moving toward the adoption of attitudes and behaviors more conducive for cultivating inclusive environments.

Scott, K. D., & Green, K., & Coley, B. C. (2019, April), Can Eye Tracking Detect Implicit Bias Among People Navigating Engineering Environments? Paper presented at 2019 CoNECD - The Collaborative Network for Engineering and Computing Diversity , Crystal City, Virginia. https://peer.asee.org/31747

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