Scholarship of Discovery
Attitude accessibility, the ease with which a given attitude comes to mind, has been demonstrated to affect attention. The current experiments focus on the construal of multiply-categorizable objects. They seek to provide evidence that (a) construals toward which individuals have more accessible attitudes, i.e., those that are more attitude-evoking, are more likely to influence the evaluation of related objects and that (b) this effect of attitude accessibility on construal processes can be extended to a whole series of objects which vary along multiple dimensions. Experiment 1 provides evidence that construals whose related attitudes were made more accessible via attitude rehearsal were more likely to influence the evaluation of a related target. Experiments 2 and 3 extend these findings to the domain of foods, which vary along two potential construal continua (healthiness versus tastiness), and demonstrate that if participant attitudes toward fitness are made more accessible, participants’ judgments about eating a variety of specific foods are guided more by the healthiness of the foods.
Young, A. I. & Fazio, R. H. (2013). Attitude accessibility as a determinant of object construal and evaluation. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 49, 404-418.