|||HüTTER, M., & DE HOUWER, J. (2017). EXAMINING THE CONTRIBUTIONS OF MEMORY-DEPENDENT AND MEMORY-INDEPENDENT COMPONENTS TO EVALUATIVE CONDITIONING VIA INSTRUCTIONS. JOURNAL OF EXPERIMENTAL SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY, 71, 49-58.||Jan De Houwer||UGENT||2018 03||
We investigated whether instructions have the potential to generate memory-independent attitude acquisition as indexed by a stochastic model of evaluative conditioning that distinguishes between memory-dependent and memory-independent learning. For that purpose, we instructed participants about pairings of conditioned and unconditioned stimuli without having participants experience them. We obtained a significant contribution of memory-independent learning that depended on whether instructions emphasized the importance of memorization at learning or the importance of feelings at either learning or retrieval. Our findings call for caution when interpreting the memory-independent contribution as an indicator of association formation on the one hand and unaware learning on the other hand. Our research demonstrates the need to clearly distinguish between processes operating at encoding and processes operating at retrieval in empirical and theoretical research on evaluative conditioning.