Preferential selection independent of race and gender: Effects on self-evaluations and newcomer information-seeking behaviors

John T. Kulas, Lisa M. Finkelstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The current study investigated the effects of an experimentally imposed program of preferential selection on beneficiary self-evaluations and newcomer information-seeking behavior. One hundred-twenty undergraduates were randomly assigned to a classification condition (in which they were informed that they tended to think in either an "analytical" or "abstract" manner) and collaborated on a task in groups of three. A fourth participant was introduced into each of these 40 extant groups under either a condition of preferential selection or not. Preferentially selected newcomers were shown to have more positive self-evaluations than their nonpreferentially selected counterparts. The presence or absence of a "similar" (in terms of thinking style) incumbent moderated the effect of being preferentially selected on the use of specific information-seeking behaviors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)147-163
Number of pages17
JournalSocial Justice Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2002



  • Affirmative action
  • Information seeking
  • Preferential selection
  • Socialization

Cite this