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PSY 321 Attitudes & Behavior Dr. Sanchez. What is an attitude?. What is an Attitude?. A positive, negative, or mixed reaction to a person, object, or idea, expressed at some level of intensity (e.g., love, like, dislike, detest). Four Possible Reactions to Attitude Objects.

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Psy 321 attitudes behavior dr sanchez l.jpg

PSY 321Attitudes & BehaviorDr. Sanchez



What is an attitude3 l.jpg

What is an Attitude?

A positive, negative,

or mixed reaction to a person, object, or idea, expressed at some level of intensity (e.g., love, like, dislike, detest)



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Attitudes are Pervasive

  • There are few things in which we truly feel neutral

  • When switch on a game (e.g. tennis match) you quickly pick sides, even if you don’t know the players.


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Components of Attitudes:

Tripartite View

Cognitive

Attitude

Affective

Behavioral


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Components of Attitudes

  • COGNITIVE

    • beliefs about attitude object (pos & neg)

  • AFFECTIVE

    • emotions and feelings the object triggers (pos & neg)

  • BEHAVIORAL

    • reaction toward the object (pos & neg actions)


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Attitude Object: DENTIST

  • COGNITIONS

    • Dentists are friendly.

    • Dentists are expensive.

  • AFFECTS

    • Dentists make me feel anxious.

    • I like dentists.

  • BEHAVIORS

    • I visit the dentist twice a year.

    • I am a very cooperative patient.


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Why People Have Attitudes

  • Value-Expressive function: Express who we are

  • Ego-defensive function: Protect Self-Esteem

  • Instrumental function: Obtain awards, avoid punishments

  • Knowledge function: understand people and events


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How Attitudes Are Measured: Self-Report Measures

  • Attitude Scale: A multiple-item questionnaire designed to measure a person’s attitude toward some object.

    • e.g., Likert Scale

    • 1 = not at all; 3 = somewhat; 5 = very much


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How would you respond to these questions?

  • Old Fashioned Racism

    • “I would mind if a Black family moved next door”

    • “Whites are more intelligent than Blacks”

  • Old Fashioned Sexism

    • “Women should stay home and not worry about having a career”

    • “Men should be in charge of all major decisions”


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How Attitudes Are Measured: Self-Report Measures

  • Bogus Pipeline: A phony lie-detector device that is sometimes used to get respondents to give truthful answers to sensitive questions.


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How Attitudes Are Measured: Covert Measures

  • Observable behavior

  • Measures of arousal

  • Facial Electromyograph (EMG): An electronic instrument that records facial muscle activity associated with emotions and attitudes.


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The Facial EMG

When people hear a message they agree with, there is increase in depressor and zygomatic muscles and decrease in corrugator and frontalis muscles.


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How Attitudes Are Measured: The Implicit Association Test (IAT)

  • Based on notion that we have implicit attitudes.

  • Implicit Association Test (IAT): Measures the speed with which one responds to pairings of concepts.


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pleasant (IAT)

unpleasant

toxic


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Rutgers (IAT)Princeton


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Rutgers (IAT)

or

pleasant

Princeton

or

unpleasant

happy


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Rutgers (IAT)

or

pleasant

Princeton

or

unpleasant


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Interpreting Reaction Times (IAT)

  • Faster responding to positive words when Rutgers is paired with pleasant = positive implicit attitude toward Rutgers

  • Faster responding to positive words when Princeton is paired with pleasant = positive implicit attitude toward Princeton


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Findings IAT (IAT)

  • Self over Other

  • White over Black

  • Young over Old

  • Males with Careers over Women with Careers

  • Women with Family over Men with Family

  • Limitations of IAT?


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Explicit & Implicit Correspondence (IAT)

  • Average correspondence is .24



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  • GENES (IAT): Twin studies

  • high correlations on attitude strength and content for identicals raised together OR apart!

  • significantly lower for fraternals


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Genetic Influences on Attitudes (IAT)

Olson et al., 2001.


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Origins of Attitudes: (IAT)Social Experiences

  • Affectively Based Attitudes

    • based on people’s feelings of an attitude object (not on beliefs)

  • Sources of Affectively Based Attitudes

    • values

    • mere exposure

    • classical conditioning


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Origins of Attitudes: (IAT)Social Experiences

  • Affectively Based Attitudes

    • based on people’s feelings of an attitude object (not on beliefs)

  • Sources of Affectively Based Attitudes

    • values

    • mere exposure

    • classical conditioning


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Origins of Attitudes: (IAT)Social Experiences

  • Affectively Based Attitudes

    • based on people’s feelings & values of an attitude object

  • Sources of Affectively Based Attitudes

    • values

    • mere exposure

    • classical conditioning


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Mere Exposure (IAT)

The tendency to develop more positive feelings toward objects & individuals the more we are exposed to them.


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Mere Exposure: (IAT)Mita and colleagues (1977)

  • Photographed women students on campus

  • Showed Ps picture & mirror image of print

  • Which do you like better - “regular” or mirror image print?


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Mere Exposure: (IAT)Mita and colleagues (1977)

  • 2/3 of Ps preferred the mirror print

  • 61% of their close friends preferred the actual picture

  • Ps were more exposed to mirrored image so like them more


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Origins of Attitudes: (IAT)Social Experiences

  • Affectively Based Attitudes

    • based on people’s feelings & values of an attitude object (not on beliefs)

  • Sources of Affectively Based Attitudes

    • values

    • mere exposure

    • classical conditioning


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Classical Conditioning (IAT)

The case whereby a stimulus that elicits an emotional response is repeatedly experienced along with a neutral stimulus that does not, until the neutral stimulus takes on the emotional properties of the first stimulus


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Affectively Based Attitudes: (IAT)

Classical Conditioning

Stimulus 1

(mothballs)

Stimulus 2

visits to granny

Pleasurable

Feelings

Stimulus 1

(mothballs)

Pleasurable

Feelings


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Got Milk? (IAT)


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Affectively Based Attitudes: (IAT)

Classical Conditioning

Stimulus 1

Milk

Stimulus 2

Supermodel

Pleasurable

Feelings

Stimulus 1

Milk

Pleasurable

Feelings


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Where Do Attitudes Come From? (IAT)

  • GENES

    • Twin study

  • SOCIAL EXPERIENCES

    • affectively based

    • behaviorally based


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Origins of Attitudes: (IAT)Social Experiences

  • Behaviorally Based Attitudes

    • based on people’s observations of how one behaves toward an attitude object

  • Sources of Beh. Based Attit.

    • Bem’s Self-Perception Theory

    • Operant Conditioning


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What are your attitudes about liberal politicians? (IAT)

Self-Perception Theory

Behavior

“Now that I think

about it, I only vote

for conservatives.”

Attitude

“I guess I don’t

like liberal

politicians.”


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Origins of Attitudes: (IAT)Social Experiences

  • Behaviorally Based Attitudes

    • based on people’s observations of how one behaves toward an attitude object

  • Sources of Beh. Based Attit.

    • Bem’s Self-Perception Theory

    • Operant Conditioning


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Operant Conditioning (IAT)

The case whereby behaviors that people freely choose to perform increase or decrease in frequency, depending on whether they are followed by positive reinforcement or punishment


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Behaviorally Based Attitudes (IAT)

& Operant Conditioning

Behavior

Toward

An Object

+ Reinforce-

ment or

Punishment

.

Pos or Neg

Attitude

toward the

Object

e.g., playing

with a child of

another

race

+ reinforcement

- parents’ approval

Punishment - parents’

disapproval



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The Weak Link (IAT)Between Attitudes and Behavior

  • Why did early work find a weak attitude-behavior link?


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General Attitudes and Specific Behaviors (IAT)

  • Must be correspondence between level of specificity of attitude and behavior.

  • For example, to predict recycling at work, do you ask:

    • How do you feel about recycling?

    • How do you feel about recycling office paper?


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Correspondence of Specificity (IAT)(Davidson & Jaccard, 1979)

  • Study of married women’s use of birth control

  • Ps asked a series of attitude questions - general to specific (e.g., will U use birth control in next 2 years)

  • Two years later asked Ps if they had used birth control since the interview


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Correspondence of Specificity (IAT)(Davidson & Jaccard, 1979)

  • Attitude Attitude-Behavior

  • Measure Correlation

  • Att. toward birth control .08

  • Att. toward birth control pills .32

  • Att. toward using birthing control pills .53

  • Att. toward using birth control pills

    during the next two years .57


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Predicting Planned Behaviors (IAT)

Theory of Planned Behavior

(Ajzen & Fishbein)

Behavioral

Intention

Behavior


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Predicting Planned Behaviors (IAT)

Theory of Planned Behavior

Specific

Attitude

Behavioral

Intention

Behavior

Subjective

Norms

Perceived

Behavioral

Control


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Predicting Planned Behaviors (IAT)

Theory of Planned Behavior

Specific

Attitude

Behavioral

Intention

Behavior

Subjective

Norms

Perceived

Behavioral

Control


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Predicting Planned Behaviors (IAT)

Theory of Planned Behavior

Specific

Attitude

Behavioral

Intention

Behavior

Subjective

Norms

Perceived

Behavioral

Control


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Will Rachel attend the COLDPLAY Concert? (IAT)

Specific

Attitude

Subjective

Norms

Perceived

Behavioral

Control


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Theory of Planned Behavior: (IAT)Subjective Norms

  • Fishbein

    • measured Ps’ attitudes and subjective norms (what do your friends think) about engaging in premarital sex

    • attitudes and subjective norms predicted sexual behavior

    • men more influenced by subjective norms

    • women more influenced by own attitudes


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Predicting Planned Behaviors (IAT)

Theory of Planned Behavior

Specific

Attitude

Behavioral

Intention

Behavior

Subjective

Norms

Perceived

Behavioral

Control


Theory of planned behavior perceived behavioral control l.jpg
Theory of Planned Behavior: (IAT)Perceived Behavioral Control

  • Azjen & Madden (1986)

    • do attitudes & subjective norms alone predict grades?

    • Combination of attitudes & subjective norms only moderately related to actual grades

    • must take into consideration behavioral control!!


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Strength of the Attitude (IAT)

  • Why do some attitudes have more influence on behavior?

  • Why are some attitudes stronger than others?


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Determining the (IAT)Strength of an Attitude

  • Does the issue directly affect one’s own outcomes and self-interests?

  • Is the issue related to deeply held philosophical, political, and religious values?

  • Is the issue of concern to one’s close friends, family, and social in-groups?


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Factors That Indicate the (IAT)Strength of an Attitude

  • How consistent is the person’s behavior with attitude?

    • Walking the talk

  • How was the information on which the attitude is based acquired?

    • Personal experience vs. second-hand

  • Has the attitude been attacked?

    • Stronger if attacked

  • How accessible is the attitude to awareness?


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Strength & Accessibility (Fazio)*** (IAT)

  • we can measure the strength of a person’s attitude by seeing how accessible it is in memory

  • if an attitude is highly accessible, then it comes to mind quickly

  • if an attitude is highly inaccessible, then it comes to mind much slower


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Do Attitudes Predict Behavior? (IAT)

  • IT DEPENDS!

  • One Key Factor

    • Spontaneous Behaviors

    • Planned/Deliberative Behaviors


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Attitudes & Spontaneous Behaviors (IAT)(Fazio, Powell, & Williams, 1989)

  • Role of accessibility in Ps’ attitudes & behaviors toward consumer items

  • Ps rated their attitude toward several products


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Attitudes & Spontaneous Behaviors (IAT)(Fazio, Powell, & Williams, 1989)

  • Accessibility

    • assessed by how long it took Ps to respond to questions about the products

  • Behavior

    • placed ten of the products in two rows of five

    • Ps could take one product home

  • Results??


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Attitudes & Spontaneous Behaviors (IAT)(Fazio, Powell, & Williams, 1989)

  • To what extent did Ps’ attitudes toward the products predict their behavior?

  • Depends on accessibility

    • attitude-behavior consistency was high among Ps with accessible attitudes

    • attitude-behavior consistency was low among Ps with inaccessible attitudes


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Next Week: Bring in an AD (IAT)

Persuasion!


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Be Prepared To: (IAT)

  • Which route of persuasion advertisement is using?

  • What persuasion cues are present in the ad?


ad