Listen Live
Listen Live Graphics (Indy)



Students who participated had to choose between two words – “Ignorant” and “Educated” while going through pictures of black men going from dark to light.


The black community is no stranger to the deep-seated issues of colorism, so the results of a new study highlighting color bias are not surprising.

Professors at San Francisco State University released a study titled “When an ‘Educated’ Black Man Becomes Lighter in the Mind’s Eye” on Tuesday exploring a concept they call “skin tone memory bias.”

The study claims to provide evidence for the subconscious bias where educated black men are remembered as having lighter skin. The claim adds fervor to the implication that successful black people are thought of as exceptions to their race rather than examples of what people within that race are capable of.

“Black individuals who defy social stereotypes might not challenge social norms sufficiently but rather may be remembered as lighter, perpetuating status quo beliefs,” the study explained.

“Whereas encountering a black individual after being primed with the word educated might pose a challenge to existing beliefs, encountering a black individual after being primed with the word ignorant would likely not require resolution or a misremembering of skin tone to align with these beliefs; especially in light of work on hypodescent.”

Published in the journal Sage Open, the study consisted of two experiments utilizing students from the university. Experiment one used 125 students who participated in exchange for partial course credit. Experiment two used thirty-five participants who also received partial course credit.


To read more on the study, click here:

Article Courtesy of The Huffington Post

Picture Courtesy of San Francisco State University and The Huffington Post

Study Reveals “Unconscious Bias” Towards Darker Skinned People  was originally published on