Date of Award

Fall 9-1-2022

Degree Type


Degree Name

MS Experimental Psychology




Fanli Jia, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Susan Nolan, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Susan Teague, Ph.D.


Values, Schwartz Value Theory, Immigration, Perceptions, Prejudice, In-group, Out-group



Researchers have turned to human values as predictors for people’s attitudes toward immigrants. Value- based studies may be effective in producing attitudinal and behavioral changes toward immigrants, as people can be receptive to universal values. The current study compared differences between human values (e.g., benevolence, universalism, power, and achievement) on people’s perceptions toward immigrants. A total sample of 250 participants was collected for the current study. Each participant was randomly assigned to one group (control group, universalism value prime, benevolence value prime, power value prime, or achievement value prime). All participants were given a demographics questionnaire, followed by a task priming value saliency, a manipulation check, and lastly a questionnaire which assessed their perceptions towards immigrants. One-way ANOVAs among the value groups (achievement, benevolence, power, and universalism), along with planned contrasts, revealed no statistically significant differences between any of the value groups, across the composite scale and subscales (realistic and symbolic threat). Post Hoc LSD tests revealed that those who identified as White were much more likely, on average, to perceive immigrants as threats compared to Blacks and Hispanics, suggesting differences in perception from an ethnic background.