Negative Mood Impacts the Relationship between Explicit and Implicit Age-Related Attitudes
The Implicit Association Test (IAT; Greenwald, McGhee, and Schwartz, 1998) has become a widely used method of measuring individuals’ implicit preferences based on the speed of sorting words or images into respective categories in a computerized task. Age IATs have been used to ascertain implicit preference judgments towards young and old faces and to compare these ratings with explicit, self-reported age-related measures. Generally, research has found a positive relationship between implicit and explicit attitudes, as well as an overall bias towards younger age. However, in examining the relations between explicit beliefs about aging and implicit age preferences, the individual factors that might influence this relationship have not been fully explored. The present study seeks to examine the role that mood, specifically anxiety and depression, may play on influencing that relationship. Consistent with previous research, our results found a positive relationship between explicit beliefs and implicit age preferences. Further, negative mood was shown to predict implicit age attitudes above and beyond the predictive ability of explicit beliefs. The implications of these findings are discussed in the context of better understanding the differences between explicit and implicit attitudes of age.
Table of Contents
Introduction -- Review of literature -- Methods -- Results -- Discussion -- Appendix A. Age IAT -- Appendix B. Beck Depression Inventory -- Appendix C. State Trait Anxiety Inventory -- Appendix D. Expectations regarding aging scale