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Measuring individual differences in implicit cognition: the implicit association test.

Journal of Personality and Social Psychology

Asian Americans, psychology, Attitude, Ethnic Groups, European Continental Ancestry Group, Female, Humans, Japan, ethnology, Korea, Logistic Models, Male, Psychometrics, methods, Reaction Time, Reproducibility of Results, Word Association Tests, Self Concept, Stereotyping, Washington

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      Abstract

      An implicit association test (IAT) measures differential association of 2 target concepts with an attribute. The 2 concepts appear in a 2-choice task (2-choice task (e.g., flower vs. insect names), and the attribute in a 2nd task (e.g., pleasant vs. unpleasant words for an evaluation attribute). When instructions oblige highly associated categories (e.g., flower + pleasant) to share a response key, performance is faster than when less associated categories (e.g., insect & pleasant) share a key. This performance difference implicitly measures differential association of the 2 concepts with the attribute. In 3 experiments, the IAT was sensitive to (a) near-universal evaluative differences (e.g., flower vs. insect), (b) expected individual differences in evaluative associations (Japanese + pleasant vs. Korean + pleasant for Japanese vs. Korean subjects), and (c) consciously disavowed evaluative differences (Black + pleasant vs. White + pleasant for self-described unprejudiced White subjects).

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