The effects of prior experience and thought on the attitude-behavior relationship

Murray G. Millar1, Karen U. Millar2
1University of Nevada, United States
2Las Vegas, United States
Cite this article:  Millar, M., & Millar, K. (1998). The effects of prior experience and thought on the attitude-behavior relationship. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 26, 105-114.

Volume 26 Issue 2 | e925 | Published: May 1998 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.1998.26.2.105

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Millar and Tesser (1986, 1992) proposed that thought may make either the affective or cognitive component of the attitude more salient and, thus, more important in the formation of a general evaluation. They further proposed that behaviors may either be cognitively or affectively driven and that when there is a match between the component emphasized by thought and the component driving behavior, the attitude behavior relationship will increase. Alternatively, a mismatch will decrease the attitude-behavior relationship. If this model is correct then we would expect the match and mismatch effects only when attitudes are low in affective-cognitive consistency. In the current study we examined the effects of affective-cognitive consistency on this model. The degree of affective-cognitive consistency was manipulated by varying the degree of exposure to analytic puzzles. As expected, the match and mismatch effects were obtained with low affective-cognitive consistency only.
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