Two studies investigated how social goals moderate priming effects on judgment. Strong motivation to judge was hypothesized to compensate for the low judged usability (see Higgins, 1996) of a general evaluative activation following nonapplicable priming. Supporting this hypothesis, the results of two experiments showed that when participants felt entitled to judge, either because they were led to believe that they were expert at judging others' personality (Study 1) or because they thought they had received more information about the target (Study 2), their judgment was evaluatively congruent with the primed nonapplicable categories. However, their judgment was not influenced by prior exposure to nonapplicable primes when they were in a more standard situation. Discussion focuses on the notion of judged usability, the way it is influenced by social goals and norms, and its relationship with other concepts in the literature.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Social Psychology
- Sociology and Political Science
- Evaluative priming; social judgment; social goals; applicability