Consider the Source: Persuasion of Implicit Evaluations is Moderated by Source Credibility
Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, Forthcoming
25 Pages Posted: 16 Jun 2012 Last revised: 21 Aug 2012
Date Written: June 14, 2012
The long history of persuasion research shows how to change explicit, self-reported evaluations through direct appeals. At the same time, research on how to change implicit evaluations has focused almost entirely on techniques of retraining existing evaluations or manipulating contexts. In five studies, we examined whether direct appeals can change implicit evaluations in the same way as they do explicit evaluations. Both explicit and implicit evaluations showed greater evidence of persuasion following information presented by a highly credible source than a source low in credibility. Whereas cognitive load did not alter the effect of source credibility on explicit evaluations, source credibility had an effect on the persuasion of implicit evaluations only when participants were encouraged and able to consider information about the source. Our findings reveal the relevance of persuasion research for changing implicit evaluations and provide new ideas about the processes underlying both types of evaluation.
Keywords: Persuasion, implicit attitudes, Implicit Association Test
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