We investigated the influence of stimulus base rates on the Implicit Association Test . Using an East/West-German attitude-IAT, we demonstrated that both overall response speed and differential response speed underlying IAT effects depend on the relative frequencies of the stimulus categories. First, when those stimuli that are more common in reality also occurred more frequently in the stimulus list, response speed generally increased. Second, IAT effects increased when congruent blocks profited from the compatibility of frequency-based response biases , whereas IAT (...) effects decreased when incongruent trial blocks profited from response compatibility. These findings demonstrate that the stimulus context moderates the magnitude of the IAT effect. Simultaneously, they highlight the need to explore the extent to which implicit measures reflect properties of the task or the environment rather than attributes of test-takers. (shrink)
There are reasons to endorse Krueger & Funder's (K&F's) critique, but also to disagree with their diagnosis. A “problem-seeking approach” is hardly the cause of imbalance and lack of theoretical integration. Precommitted, ideological theories afford a more appropriate explanation.
In their scholarly target article, Gilead et al. explain how abstract mental representations and the predictive brain enable prospection and time-traveling. However, their exclusive focus on intrapsychic capacities misses an important point, namely, the degree to which mind and brain are tuned by the environment. This neglected aspect of adaptive cognition is discussed and illustrated from a cognitive-ecological perspective.