Attitudes provide summary assessments that assist in decisions about how to interact with the world. An attitude is an association between a concept and an evaluation—positive or negative, favorable or unfavorable, desirable or undesirable. Attitudes help guide people's judgment and behavior. Should I approach the bear with the big claws or run away? Should I eat this cactus? Do I like members of that group? In short, is this thing good or bad?

One way that attitudes can be measured is by asking people to report their feelings. For example, to find out someone's attitude toward ice cream, we might ask the person to rate his or her attitude on a response scale ranging from 1 (dislike ice cream very much) to 8 (like ice ...

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