The Sorting Paired Features Task (Bar-Anan, Nosek, & Vianello, 2009)

The SPF is a flexible technique designed to measure implicit social cognition. It assesses automatic associations between concept (e.g., gender) and attribute (e.g., evaluation) categories. The SPF has four features that distinguish it from other measures of implicit social cognition. First, the SPF measures all associations in one block (unlike IAT and like Evaluative Priming). Second, the SPF requires participants to categorize two stimuli at once to a category pair. Therefore, it involves simultaneous processing of the two association units. Third, the SPF allows direct manipulation of categorization of the stimuli, measuring associatins with both focal accessible categories and non-focal not explicitly mentioned categories. Fourth, it enables separable assessments of the four association strengths involved (e.g., white-good, white-bad, black-good and black-bad). It should be noted that these assessments are not interpretable in isolation because scores for the four associations are interdependent. They only provide the relative strength of each association compared to the other three. 

All data summaries and stimulus materials are made available for academic research purposes only. All rights reserved. (c) 2008.

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citation

Bar-Anan Y., & Nosek, B. A., & Vianello, M. (2009). The Sorting Paired Features Task: A Measure of Association Strengths. Experimental Psychology, 56, 329-343. [Request paper

Abstract

The sorting paired features (SPF) task measures four associations in a single response block. Using four response options (e.g., good-Republicans, bad-Republicans, good-Democrats and bad-Democrats), each trial requires participants to categorize two stimuli at once to a category pair (e.g., wonderful-Clinton to good-Democrats). Unlike other association measures, the SPF requires simultaneous categorization of both components of the association in the same trial. Providing measurement flexibility, it is sensitive to both focal, attended concepts and non-focal, unattended stimulus features (e.g., gender of individuals in a politics SPF). Three studies measure race, gender, and political evaluations, differentiate automatic evaluations between known groups, provide evidence of convergent and discriminant validity with other attitude measures, and illustrate the SPF’s unique measurement qualities.

Study Demos

Web demonstration of the SPF measuring automatic attitudes toward Black and White people
Uses stimuli from Bar-Anan, Nosek & Vianello (2009).

Note: This is a demonstration task only. If you plan to use the SPF for research, you should carefully review the parameters of the SPF outlined in the original paper in the context of your research question.

Study Materials

Sample SPF script for DirectRT
Sample SPF script for Inquisit
Sample SPF script for E-Prime

Note: These are demonstration scripts only. If you plan to use the SPF for research, you should carefully review the parameters of the SPF outlined in the original paper in the context of your research question. For academic research purposes only.

Face stimuli from Experiment 2

Data

Sample SPSS script for analyzing SPF data from E-prime

Raw data from studies reported in the article is available for download at Brian Nosek's Dataverse.

Supplements

Supplement 1: SPF Reliability
Vianello, M., Bar-Anan, Y., & Nosek, B. A. (2007). Reliability of the SPF: Test-retest and internal consistency. Project Implicit technical report no. 2007-01. [Request paper

Supplement 2: Additional analysis
Bar-Anan, Y., Nosek, B. A. & Vianello, M. (2008). Additional analysis and reports for Bar-Anan, Nosek, & Vianello (2008). Project Implicit technical report no. 2008-04. [Request paper

Supplement 3: Comparing the SPF and Evaluative Priming
Bar-Anan, Y., Nosek, B. A. & Vianello, M. (2008). Comparison between the SPF and Evaluative Priming. Project Implicit technical report no. 2008-05. [Request paper

Yoav Bar-Anan, Brian Nosek, Michelangelo Vianello