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Introduction

Evaluation is a fundamental reaction to any object of psychological significance (Jarvis & Petty, 1996; Osgood, Suci & Tannenbaum, 1957). The present entry reviews some of the major techniques that have been developed to assess these evaluative reactions, or attitudes. A discussion of methods based on explicit evaluative responses – direct and inferred – is followed by a consideration of disguised and implicit assessment techniques. Emphasis is placed on questions of reliability, validity, and practicality.

Explicit Measures of Attitude

Virtually any response can serve as an indicator of attitude toward an object so long as it is reliably associated with the respondent's tendency to evaluate the object in question. In contrast to implicit responses, which cannot be easily controlled, explicit evaluative responses are under the conscious control ...

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