Document Type

Honors Project


Thank you to Joan Ostrove, Jaine Strauss, and Tina Kruse for their support throughout this project.


The present study examined the influence of two indirect contact interventions (i.e., viewing a positive image of a man with DS and imagining a positive interaction with a man with DS) on nondisabled individuals’ attitudes toward those with DS. Additionally, this study explored the nature of the relationship between previous contact (i.e., quantity and quality) and the effectiveness of said interventions. In this two-part study, 87 participants reported their attitudes and liking toward individuals with DS, as well as the quantity and quality of previous contact. One week later, participants completed a lab session that involved viewing a picture of and/or imagining an interaction with a man with DS or neither, and reporting their attitudes and liking again. Data analyses revealed that neither of the indirect contact interventions was associated with more positive attitudes or liking. Quality of previous contact was significantly and positively associated with positive attitudes and liking toward individuals with DS. Analyses indicated mixed findings on quantity of previous contact. The effectiveness of the indirect contact interventions did not vary as a function of quality or quantity of previous contact with individuals with DS. These results have implications for further investigation and development of indirect contact interventions.

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