What is it about?

We examine the diversity of participants in relationship studies published between 1996 and 2000 and between 2016 and 2020, as well as how researchers write about their participants. We find that the field has made strides in some areas (e.g., increased reporting of sexual orientation) but remains stagnant in others (e.g., reporting of socioeconomic status), and there’s room to grow even in areas of improvement. We offer considerations for researchers hoping to build a more inclusive science, including suggestions for how they can write about their participants in accurate, inclusive ways.

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Why is it important?

Psychologists often want to use their work to benefit society, a goal that requires a diverse and inclusive science. Our work suggests that the field of relationship science has room to grow when it comes to fostering diverse participant samples and inclusive research programs and offers some potential first steps toward improvement.

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This page is a summary of: “Mostly White, heterosexual couples”: Examining demographic diversity and reporting practices in relationship science research samples., Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, February 2023, American Psychological Association (APA),
DOI: 10.1037/pspi0000417.
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