Function over Form: A Behavioral Approach to Implicit Attitudes

Function over Form: A Behavioral Approach to Implicit Attitudes

Anthony G. O'Reilly (National University of Ireland – Maynooth, Ireland), Bryan Roche (National University of Ireland – Maynooth, Ireland) and Aoife Cartwright (National University of Ireland – Maynooth, Ireland)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-6599-6.ch008
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Abstract

Research surrounding the construct of “implicit attitudes” and the various methodologies for measuring that construct is currently founded on the social cognitive paradigm. However, no robust and agreed upon theoretical framework has emerged from this paradigm, despite the widespread adoption of implicit testing methodologies and their associated theoretical assumptions. The current chapter outlines a functional approach to implicit testing, describing research stemming from Relational Frame Theory that was developed in parallel with the emergence of the IAT, and arguing for the benefits of connecting these two strands of research to improve the understanding of attitude behaviors and create better understood implicit testing methodologies. The chapter concludes with descriptions of two examples of such methodologies: the IRAP and the FAST.

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