Grade students’ work anonymously when possible to avoid the impact of implicit bias.

Grade students’ work anonymously when possible to avoid the impact of implicit bias.
3 (2 votes)

Action:

  • Have students write their name on the back page of exams or homework assignments so that you can easily grade students’ work without seeing their name.
  • Have student use their ID number on their written papers instead of their name.
  • Do not look at a student’s or match the ID# to a name until after you have finalized the grades on the assignment.

Reason:

  • Implicit bias has been well documented, for example in comparing the call-back rates for resumes based upon whether the applicant’s name was stereotypically associated with a White or Black person:

    • Bertrand, M., & Mullainathan, S. (2004). Are Emily and Greg more employable than Lakisha and Jamal? A field experiment on labor market discrimination. The American Economic Review,94(4), 991-1013.
    • The co-author of this study summarizes related research in a New York Times article.