International Journal of Psychology and Psychological Therapy

Volume 9 Num. 3 - October 2009


Implicit Attitudes to Work and Leisure Among North American and Irish Individuals: A Preliminary Study

Volume 9 Num. 3 - October 2009 - Pages 317-334


Gail Chan , Dermot Barnes-Holmes , Yvonne Barnes-Holmes , Ian Stewart


The current article reports the findings from two preliminary experiments investigating the
Implicit Association Test (IAT) and the Implicit Relational Association Procedure (IRAP) as
measures of implicit attitudes in the domain of work and leisure among North American and
Irish individuals. The IAT and IRAP tasks involved responding under time pressure on a
computerized task, with response latency as the dependent variable. The IAT required participants
to categorize positively or negatively valenced words with stimuli associated with either Work
or Holidays. The IRAP required that participants confirm or deny that Work and Holidays are
similar or opposite to positively and negatively valenced words. Participants also completed
an explicit measure consisting of a Likert-based questionnaire. In both Experiments, citizens
of the United States of America produced performances on the IAT and IRAP that indicated
more negative attitudes to work and more positive attitudes to holidays than both Canadian
and Irish citizens. Responses on the explicit measures did not accord with this overall pattern
of group differences. The results support the use of the IRAP as a measure of implicit attitudes
and furthermore the findings appear to be generally consistent with a recent large-scale survey
of attitudes to work across 23 countries.

Key words:

Implicit Relational Assessment Procedure, Implicit Association Test, work, leisure

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