TOOLS: Plumb Your Psyche

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Science  23 Nov 2001:
Vol. 294, Issue 5547, pp. 1623
DOI: 10.1126/science.294.5547.1623d

It may not expose the dark recesses of your soul, but the Implicit Association Test can reveal attitudes you may not admit to your closest friend—or even to yourself. By gauging your immediate reactions to sequences of words or images flashed on the screen, the five versions of the test supposedly disinter deep-seated biases on race, gender, age, politics, and academic subjects. The results can be illuminating and are occasionally disconcerting: In the racial associations test, the site reports, most Americans betray some preference for whites over blacks. To get in-depth explanations of the scoring and background, however, you have to visit the researchers' home pages, where you can peruse their papers on what they've learned from 3 years of probing attitudes online and read about the test's limitations.

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