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Portions of this manuscript were presented at the 2009 annual meeting of the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies, New York, NY.
Activation of schemas related to one’s appearance has been studied extensively using implicit tasks such as the word stem completion task and the Stoop paradigm. The current study utilized a word stem completion task adapted for presentation on a Personal Data Assistant to examine differences in reaction times to appearance- and non-appearance-related words. Participants were 93 undergraduate women, 30 of whom met criteria for eating psychopathology utilizing the diagnostic algorithm for the Eating Disorder Diagnostic Scale (Stice et al. in Psychol Assess 12:123–131. doi:10.1037/1040-3518.104.22.168, 2000). The remaining 63 participants served as a comparison group. A significant interaction effect indicated that women with eating pathology exhibited significantly longer reaction times when selecting the appearance-related words than those without eating psychopathology. This research introduces a novel method of measuring reaction time to appearance- and non-appearance-related words and demonstrates the relevance of appearance schematicity in the naturalistic environment by showing that these schemas have the potential to impact the way young women process schema-relevant information on a day-to-day basis.
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- Reaction Times to Appearance-Related or Non-appearance-Related Word Choice Among Women With and Without Eating Psychopathology
Taryn A. Myers
Danielle R. Ridolfi
Janis H. Crowther
- Springer US