Netherlands Journal of Psychology

, Volume 65, Issue 1, pp 10–21 | Cite as

Beer makes the heart grow fonder: single-target implicit attitudes toward beer but not alcohol are related to drinking behaviour in regular beer drinkers

  • Katrijn Houben
  • Reinout W. Wiers


Previous studies demonstrated that positive implicit attitudes toward alcohol, assessed with unipolar Implicit Association Tests (IATs), are related to drinking behaviour while negative implicit alcohol attitudes are not. However, because the IAT is a relative measure, the present study aimed at replicating these findings with non-relative unipolar Single Target-IATs (ST-IATs). Further, participants performed ST-IATs with either alcohol or beer as the target concept. Because we only included regular beer drinkers in this study, it was expected that scores on the beer ST-IAT would be more strongly related to drinking behaviour than scores on the alcohol ST-IAT. Consistent with previous findings, both alcohol and beer ST-IATs supported the coexistence of positive and negative implicit alcohol-related attitudes. Further, correlational analyses showed that positive implicit attitudes toward beer were related to drinking behaviour, while negative implicit attitudes were not. Implicit attitudes toward alcohol, in contrast, were unrelated to drinking behaviour. Hence, these findings suggest that the beer ST-IAT assessed more behaviour-relevant implicit attitudes compared with the alcohol ST-IAT. Implications and limitations of these results are discussed and suggestions for future research are given in the discussion. (Netherlands Journal of Psychology, 65, 10-21.)

alcohol implicit attitudes Implicit Association Test 


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© Bohn Stafleu van Loghum 2009

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