ISSN 2043-8087
Journal of Experimental Psychopathology
 Volume 3, Issue 3, 470-478, 2012
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The effects of cognitive and affective priming on law of contagion appraisals

Authors
Adams, T. G.(a), Cisler, J. M.(c), Brady, R. E.(a)(b), & Lohr, J. M.(a)
(a) University of Arkansas, Fayetteville
(b) University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
(c) University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Brain Imaging Research Center

Volume 3, Issue 3, 2012, Pages 470-478
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5127/jep.025911

Abstract
The law of contagion is the magical belief that contagion can spread in an absolute fashion despite minimal contact, extreme lapses in time, and many degrees of removal. Research suggests that two broad mechanisms may underlie inflated law of contagion beliefs and appraisals. These include cognitive (attention, informational) and affective (disgust). The present study tested the effects of cognitive-informational (script that described the spreading nature of germs) and affective (disgust odorant) priming on law of contagion appraisals using the chain of contagion task. Results showed that disgust priming had a non-significant impact on law of contagion appraisals while cognitive-informational priming caused participants to appraise contagion as being able to spread in a more virulent fashion. These data are consistent with previous research and support the idea that appraisals related to the law of contagion can be affected by informational manipulations. Results are discussed in relation to contamination fears in OCD.

Table of Contents
Introduction
Methods
 Participants
 Measures
  Revised Disgust Propensity and Sensitivity Scale (DPSS-R; van Overveld, de Jong, Peters, Cavanagh, & Davey, 2006).
  The Chain of Contagion Task (Cisler et al., 2011; Tolin et al., 2004).
 Priming Stimuli
  Affective Prime.
  Cognitive Prime.
  No Prime.
 Procedures
Results
Discussion
Acknowledgements
References

Correspondence to
Thomas G. Adams Jr., University of Arkansas, 316 Memorial Hall, Fayetteville, AR 72701.

Keywords
contagion; affect; cognitive; informational learning; disgust; obsessive-compulsive disorder

Dates
Received 3 Nov 2011; Revised 22 Feb 2012; Accepted 23 Feb 2012; In Press 1 Jul 2012







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