Did You Choose Your Job Based On Your Name?

Did You Choose Your Job Based On Your Name?

The term "nominative determinism" was coined in 1994 in New Scientist magazine. The column highlighted humorous examples of the theory, such as a book on polar regions by Daniel Snowman, and a urology paper by A. J. Splatt and D. Weedon. Other notable examples include famous sprinter Usain Bolt, poet William Wordsworth, and any bakers you know named Baker!

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Key Facts In This Video

  • 1

    One study found that job applicants with equal qualifications were more likely to be hired if they had "white-sounding" names. (0:55)

  • 2

    People appear more likely to choose careers with labels that resemble their own name. (2:18)

  • 3

    Researchers theorize that nominative determinism happens because people prefer things that they can relate to themselves. (2:35)

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