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The Effect of the Validity of Co‐occurrence on Automatic and Deliberate Evaluation

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European Journal of Social Psychology

Published online on

Abstract

Co‐occurrence of an object and affective stimuli does not always mean that the object and the stimuli are the same valence (e.g., false accusations that Richard is a crook). Contemporary theory posits that information about the (in)validity of co‐occurrence has stronger influence on deliberate than automatic evaluation. However, available evidence supports that hypothesis only when the (in)validity information is delayed. Further, the existing evidence is open to alternative methodological accounts. In six high‐powered experiments (total N = 1,750), we modified previous procedures to minimize alternative explanations and examine whether delayed (in)validity information has discrepant effect on automatic versus deliberate evaluation. Casting doubt on the generality of the hypothesis, we found more sensitivity of deliberate than automatic evaluation to delayed validity information only when automatic evaluation was measured with the Implicit Association Test and not with the Evaluative Priming task or the Affective Misattribution Procedure.