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Attitudinal and non-attitudinal components of IAT performance.


The Implicit Association Test (IAT) was designed to measure automatically activated attitudinal associations, free of the influence of processes that affect their expression. Subsequent research has shown that IAT performance also is influenced by non-associative processes, but the extent to which these non-associative processes are content-specific or if they operate similarly regardless of the attitude being measured has largely gone unexamined. In the current research, participants completed pairs of IATs that varied in conceptual overlap: Tests shared a high, moderate, or low degree of overlap in the measured attitudes. The Quad model was applied to estimate the contributions of four processes to IAT performance. Evidence was found for two relatively general, non-attitudinal processes and two relatively attitude-specific processes. Implications are discussed for interpretation of IAT scores, individual differences in IAT scores, and IAT score malleability.

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