The Implicit Association Test (IAT) is increasingly used in developmental research despite minimal evidence of whether children's IAT scores are reliable across time or predictive of behavior. When test-retest reliability and predictive validity have been assessed, the results have been mixed, and because these studies have differed on many factors simultaneously (lag-time between testing administrations, domain, etc.), it is difficult to discern what factors may explain variability in existing test-retest reliability and predictive validity estimates. Across five studies (total N=19; ages 6- to 11-years-old), we manipulated two factors that have varied in previous developmental research-lag-time and domain. An internal meta-analysis of these studies revealed that, across three different methods of analyzing the data, mean test-retest (rs of .48, .38, and .34) and predictive validity (rs of .46, .20, and .10) effect sizes were significantly greater than zero. While lag-time did not moderate the magnitude of test-retest coefficients, whether we observed domain differences in test-retest reliability and predictive validity estimates was contingent on other factors, such as how we scored the IAT or whether we included estimates from a unique sample (i.e., a sample containing gender typical and gender diverse children). Recommendations are made for developmental researchers that utilize the IAT in their research.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Life-span and Life-course Studies
- Implicit Association Test
- Implicit attitudes
- Predictive validity
- Test-retest reliability