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Ageism / Age Discrimination

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Ageism / Age Discrimination

This guide is designed to support academic and personal research on the topic of age discrimination, and of multi-disciplinary approaches to promoting inclusive practices and equity for people of all ages.

The guide is continually updated with links to new library materials and other relevant web resources. Use the tabs to navigate through a variety of research tools and selected content.


What is ageism?

Ageism refers to the stereotypes (how we think), prejudice (how we feel) and discrimination (how we act) towards others or oneself based on age.

Who does ageism affect?

Ageism affects everyone. Children as young as 4 years old become aware of their culture’s age stereotypes. From that age onwards they internalize and use these stereotypes to guide their feelings and behavior towards people of different ages. They also draw on culture’s age stereotypes to perceive and understand themselves, which can result in self-directed ageism at any age. Ageism intersects and exacerbates other forms of disadvantage including those related to sex, race and disability.

Where is ageism seen?

Ageism is everywhere: from our institutions and relationships to ourselves. For example, ageism is in policies that support healthcare rationing by age, practices that limit younger people’s opportunities to contribute to decision-making in the workplace, patronizing behavior used in interactions with older and younger people, and in self-limiting behavior, which can stem from internalized stereotypes about what a person of a given age can be or do.

 World Health Organization. (2021, March 18). Ageing: Ageism.

Here are a few effective search terms to try when using the Library Catalog or a database:
  • ageism
  • age discrimination
  • age AND bias
  • age AND stereotypes
  • intergenerational relations

Add keywords like employment, healthcare, education, technology, etc. to research specific aspects.

Top 5 Resources

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