Experiencing Computer Anxiety Later in Life: The Role of Stereotype Threat
In the current paper we use semi-structured interviews (N = 12) to reveal instances which trigger age-based stereotype threat and subsequent computer anxiety for older individuals, and potential impact on their technological self-efficacy. The results show that situation-specific anxiety arises in situations when older people were faced with children or younger adults who presented higher ICT skills. We argue that when the situation is “powerful enough” to increase older people’s awareness of the negative stereotypes associated to their group in relation to technology, this would increase computer anxiety and could have a negative influence on technology appropriation and performance.
KeywordsStereotype threat Computer anxiety Older people Age-based stereotype
This project was supported by UEFISCDI, project grant PN-II-RU-TE-2014-4-0429, AGETECH: Understanding Technology Later in Life, 2014–2017.
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