The older population is growing rapidly and businesses must prepare for changes in their workforce. Cases of age discrimination have also become more common. Older workers are being forced out of their jobs at a faster rate than any other age group. As a result, older workers commonly take jobs in different careers, where they compete with younger workers who have similar relevant experience and are valued for their youth. Both prototype matching theory and career timetables theory state that people hold stereotypes of the job in addition to stereotypes of people. In laboratory research, a mismatch between the age of the worker and the age-type of the job has led to lower evaluations, lower job suitability ratings, and other indicators of discrimination. The purpose of this thesis is to assess whether the construct of age-type is related to discrimination in real-world legal cases. Real life instances of discrimination were attained from a 15-year sample of 388 age discrimination jury verdicts and settlements. Each job in the sample of cases was rated to determine age-type, perceived proportion of older and younger workers in the job, and importance of stereotypically older worker features to the job. Results showed that all forms of age stereotypes, both general and specific, were related to the frequency of cases in jobs associated with older or younger stereotypes. Specifically, older workers were more likely to have age discrimination cases go to trial in younger age-typed jobs. However, these variables did not help to predict formal outcomes of the cases (win vs. loss). Among the cases that did win, cases in older age-typed jobs won significantly more money than in younger age-typed jobs.
If this is your Honors thesis, and want to learn how to access it or for more information about readership statistics, contact us at STARS@ucf.edu
Bachelor of Science (B.S.)
College of Sciences
Dissertations, Academic -- Sciences;Sciences -- Dissertations, Academic
Length of Campus-only Access
Honors in the Major Thesis
Smith, Nicholas, "The cost of discrimination job age-type and legal outcomes" (2012). HIM 1990-2015. 1803.