Implicit Bias in Science

2018 Mentoring Symposium
"Recognizing and responding to implicit bias in science"
(Sponsored by the Women in Physiology Committee)


Date: Sunday, Monday, Tuesday during Experimental Biology 2018

Time: 7:00 – 8:00 AM

Location: San Diego Convention Center, Room 25C



Denise Al Alam, Ph.D., University of Southern California

Kedra Wallace, Ph.D., University of Mississippi Medical Center

Dao H. Ho, Ph.D., Tripler Army Medical Center

Gender bias and sexism in science, whether conventional or non-conventional (targeting women, men, LGBTQ), has historically improved, but it still affects a great number of scientists every day. It is important for scientists at all levels to be able to work and thrive in an environment free of gender bias and overt sexism. Recently, it has become more common to openly talk about sexism in science. This is especially true ever since Nobel Prize laureate Tim Hunt made a public sexist comment that forced him to resign. Many cases of gender bias and sexism in academic and non-academic institutions have been brought to light and dealt with since this event. The Women in Physiology Committee Mentoring Symposium for 2018 will focus on how to recognize and react to implicit bias in the workplace, as well as how we can create a positive environment where everyone can thrive. First, we will address how to identify sexism in all its forms: conventional, non-conventional, subtle or forthright. Our first speaker will present a historical perspective, reviewing how this issue has improved over the past few decades, and identify the current status of gender bias and sexism in science. This speaker will also address how to identify sexism against female, male, and LGBTQ scientists. The second speaker will then address the policies in place at different levels to prevent such occurrences and protect victims of bias in the workplace. The final speaker will discuss how we can be self-aware of these issues, and promote a positive attitude and environment by holding ourselves and others accountable in order to create a bias-free environment. A panel discussion will take place following the final presentation. The goal of this symposium is to educate the audience about implicit bias in science, and to advocate and encourage scientists from all backgrounds and at all levels to create and promote for themselves and others an environment free of such bias.



Each presentation (a series of three talks) will last approximately 20-25 minutes, followed by an opportunity for Q&A.

  • Sunday, April 22
    “Implicit and explicit bias in science and science education”

    Charlotte Tate, PhD, San Francisco State University
  • Monday, April 23
    “Implicit Bias: What is it - and what can we do about it?”

    Tamera Schneider, PhD, Wright State University
  • Tuesday, April 24
    “Surviving and Thriving in the Post-Weinstein World”

    Gretchen Dahlinger Means, JD, University of Southern California


See below for related resources: