Angela L. Bos

Associate Professor of Political Science, College of Wooster

About Angela

Bos is a political psychologist who seeks to understand how stereotypes create barriers when women and minorities pursue political office. Part of this work examines how the ways U.S. political parties nominate candidates for office can exacerbate the chances that candidates are judged based on stereotypes. Her other work examines how portrayals and images of politics- in student textbooks, on social media, and in mass media coverage - influence citizen perceptions. Her current work explores when elementary or middle school girls become less interested in politics than boys – and what explains the emergence of such gender gaps. 

In the News

Research discussed by Konrad Kramar, in "Trump gegen Clinton: Showdown am Eriesee," Kurier, October 29, 2016.
Research discussed by Wendy Patrick, in "In Politics, Is It Always Good to Be a Woman?," Psychology Today, May 22, 2016.
Opinion: "Turns Out We Don’t Stereotype Female Politicians. We Just Don’t Get Them at All," Angela L. Bos, Slate Magazine, June 14, 2013.
Research discussed by Brian Resnick, in "Study: Female Politicians are Stereotyped, But Not as Women," Atlantic, June 10, 2013.


"The Unintended Effects of Political Party Affirmative Action Policies on Female Candidates’ Nomination Chances" Politics, Groups and Identities 3, no. 1 (2015): 73-93.

Affirmative action policies adopted by state political party organizations for nominating candidates can hinder nomination of female candidates seeking statewide office. The policies have negative, unintended consequences for female candidates in that they promote gender stereotype activation and create a stigma of incompetence for female candidates. 

"Measuring Stereotypes of Female Politicians" (with Monica Schneider). Political Psychology 35, no. 2 (2014): 245-266.

Questions the assumption that stereotypes about female politicians are the same as stereotypes about women so that if we think women are weak, we will think female politicians are too. Finds the stereotypes of female politicians include fewer masculine and leadership qualities than male politicians and that they do not possess positive qualities that women are often assumed to have, like empathy and caring.

"Whose American Government? A Quantitative Analysis of Author Sex and Textbook Content" (with Erin Cassese). Journal of Political Science Education 10, no. 3 (2013): 253-272.

Examines the portrayals of women in introductory American politics textbooks and finds there is scant coverage of women – and that what exists ignores diversity among women, reinforces traditional gender roles, and rarely focuses on women as political actors.  

"Extreme Close-Up: The Effects of HD TV on Perceptions of Obama and McCain in a 2008 Presidential Election Debate" (with Bas van Doorn and Abbey Smanik). Communication Research Reports (2012): 161-168.

Shows that high-definition television (HDTV) led citizens to perceived the older candidate John McCain more negatively in a 2008 presidential debate with Barack Obama

"Out of Control: Delegates’ Information Sources and Perceptions of Female Candidates" Political Communication 28, no. 1 (2011): 87-109.

Gender stereotypes limit the potential for women to attain political party nominations for statewide office. Specifically, when statewide political party convention delegates receive candidate information from other delegates – as opposed to from the candidate or their campaigns – it confirms delegates’ stereotype expectations, which negatively relates to supporting her nomination.