PSYCH 3CB3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 8: Cognitive Dissonance, Internal Consistency, Embeddedness

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12 Oct 2016
Department
Professor
September 27 2016
Accessibility: what is it?
How readily can we bring up from memory our attitude about something?
Generally assumes storage of attitudes rather than online formation
o The speed of retrieving and integrating relevant info to form attitude
Strength of associative link between attitude object and its evaluation
Strength of links between attitude components and each other
o "the ability of partial stimulus input to quickly and accurately reproduce the entire
patter of activation for the attitude"
Measured via reaction time for 'good/bad' judgements
o How quickly do you respond to questions about your cognitions?
o Accessibility is time construct - how quickly
Antecedents of Accessibility
Rehearsal or repeated retrieval of attitude
o Repeated access like practice or rehearsing - more you thought about it, more
accessible
o Upcoming election - years ago, didn't have an opinion about Trump but now its an
accessible attitude
o Media coverage of attitude issue
o Questioned re attitude
Direct experience with attitude object
o If you have gone to Trump rally and therefore had direct personal contact, attitude
about candidate is likely to be more accessible versus someone who just read about
candidates
Credibility of evaluative info re attitude object
Consequences of Accessibility
More stable over time
More resistant to persuasion
More consistent with behavior
o If you have highly accessibility attitude towards Clinton, the chances your
volunteering behavior will be consistent is very much greater
Associates of Accessibility
Accessibility and Attitude extremity:
o Non-experimental studies find extremity = accessibility
o Experimental studies: little evidence that extremity = accessibility
Accessibility and attitude importance:
o Non-experimental studies support link b/w attitude importance = accessibility
(though casual direction is not clear) people may rare attitude as impt b/c it is easily
accessible
o Experimental students are less consistent in finding this relationship. Little evidence
that importance = accessibility
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