Implicit Association Test Essay

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The Implicit Association Test (IAT) is performed to reveal aspects and traits about a person that they would not be able to admit about themselves if asked. How people act on the outside can often deceive others, but when it comes to this test it is hard to hide the unconscious feelings. This test goes deeper in the mind and thoughts, perhaps more than the person knew about themselves. The test requires quick responses, while also using compatible conditions and incompatible conditions to try to trick the mind. For example, compatible conditions would be whites associated with a positive word and blacks associated with a negative word and incompatible would be vice versa. The basis of the IAT is to measure whether a person has higher or lower …show more content…

The association mechanism has to do with a person's semantic memory, which is the general knowledge about something. The association mechanism results in your mind automatically assuming two items that are alike correspond to one side and unlike go to the other side. The response competition mechanism has to do with the order at which specific word and pictures are given. If the words are associated the responses will be faster without requiring thought and if they are not normally associated it often results in a pause and a slower response time. Both the association and response competition mechanisms and the response times that correspond are the result of implicit prejudice. The implicit prejudice can often result in a person not even knowing that they felt this way towards a certain group. Even if what the results show are not necessarily how one feels, their actions are mostly likely an effect of their unconscious thoughts. The cultural stereotype mechanism is different because its data does not suggest prejudice, but rather allows the viewers to think for themselves. The person that is testing does not make any known assumptions as they do in the first two mechanisms, but rather lets the results speak for

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