Imagined contact can be more effective for participants with stronger initial prejudices

West, Keon; Hotchin, Victoria and Chantelle, Wood. 2017. Imagined contact can be more effective for participants with stronger initial prejudices. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 47(5), pp. 282-292. ISSN 0021-9029 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

Imagined contact is an intervention that combines the prejudice-reduction of intergroup contact with the easy, low-risk application of imagery-based techniques. Accordingly, it can be applied where direct contact is difficult or risky. However, a possible limitation of imagined contact is that it may not be effective for participants with stronger initial prejudices, which would limit its usefulness and application. Two experiments (N1 = 103, N2 = 95) investigated whether initial prejudice moderated imagined contact's effects on explicit attitudes, behavioral intentions (Experiment 1), implicit attitudes, and petition-signing behaviors (Experiment 2) toward two different outgroups. In both experiments, imagined contact was more effective when initial prejudice was higher. Implications for imagined contact theory and application are discussed.

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6 December 2016Accepted
15 March 2017Published Online
May 2017Published

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24 Mar 2017 14:36

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14 Apr 2021 11:17

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Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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