Publication Date

Fall 2019

Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Adam Lockwood (Director), Anthony Paquin, Jay Gabbard

Degree Program

Department of Psychology

Degree Type

Master of Arts


Recent studies have shown that imagining contact with a member of a differing social group can reduce prejudice toward said group. This type of prejudice intervention, known as an imagined contact intervention, can be beneficial when direct contact with the outgroup is not feasible. This study adds to existing research on imagined contact interventions by replicating a simple version of the intervention by Husnu and Crisp (2010) and assessing attitudes toward an American Muslim out-group. This study extends the research of Husnu and Crisp (2010) by using American participants as opposed to British participants and also uses an online distribution for the intervention as opposed to a laboratory setting. The research question was: Will the imagined contact intervention significantly reduce prejudice toward the American Muslim out-group when compared to a control condition? Participants who reported socializing with the Muslim out-group less than three times in the past six months completed a form of the intervention online, responded to an out-group attitude index regarding the Muslim out-group, and completed demographics questions. In this study, there was no significant effect of the imagined contact intervention on out-group attitudes. Possible reasons for the intervention’s ineffectiveness, including the use of online distribution for the survey, are discussed along with directions for future research.


Personality and Social Contexts | Race and Ethnicity | Social Psychology