Keywords: Intermediate-Status Group; Intergroup Threat; Stability of Social Stratification; Intergroup Relations.
This research analyses the effect of stability and instability of social stratification on identity threat perception among members of an intermediate- status group. Seventy-nine nursing students were categorized in intermediate status position between physicians and healthcare operators. Stability was manipulated at three levels: 1) stable, 2) upwardly unstable, and 3) downwardly unstable. Social identity threats coming from above and from below were measured. Results revealed that in both stable and upwardly unstable conditions, participants perceived a lower social identity threat and the threat came mainly from the high-status group. In the downwardly unstable condition, in contrast, the social identity threat was greater than in both stable and upwardly unstable conditions, and came from the low-status group.