Priming on Implicit and Explicit Measures of Attachment
Abstract: As researchers are increasingly interested in the unconscious, automatic processes of attachment (i.e., formation and maintenance of bonds with close others), a discrepancy is emerging as they predominantly use explicit attachment measures (e.g., self-report questionnaires, interviews) to evaluate the accessibility of attachment-related content in adult interpersonal relationships. This discrepancy poses a potential problem considering the limitations of explicit measures in the assessment of implicit (i.e., unconscious) attachment processes. In the current study, we assess the impact of two supraliminal priming conditions (i.e., secure-base priming, neutral priming) on implicit and explicit measures of attachment in approximately 200 undergraduate participants. Explicit adult attachment will be assessed through the following self-report measures: The Relationship Scales Questionnaire (RSQ; Griffin & Bartholomew, 1994), and the Experiences in Close Relationships Scale – Revised (ECR-R; Fraley, Waller, & Brennan, 2000). Implicit adult attachment will be assessed through the use of a self-other Implicit Association Test (IAT; Greenwald, McGhee, & Schwartz, 1998). We expect participants in the secure-base condition to exhibit more attachment security on both implicit and explicit measures of attachment compared to participants in the neutral priming condition, as well as, the impact of the secure-base prime to be significantly greater on implicit measures relative to explicit attachment measures.
Gilberto Barrios Garcia*
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