The implicit relational assessment procedure (irap) as a response-time and event-related-potentials methodology for testing natural verbal relations: a preliminary study
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Barnes-Holmes, Dermot; Hayden, Eilish; Barnes-Holmes, Yvonne; Stewart, Ian (2008). The implicit relational assessment procedure (irap) as a response-time and event-related-potentials methodology for testing natural verbal relations: a preliminary study. The Psychological Record 58 (4), 497-515
The current article reports the first attempt to test the Implicit Relational Assessment Procedure (IRAP), as a group-based measure of natural verbal relations, using both response-latency and event-related potentials as dependent variables. On each trial of the IRAP, participants were presented with I of 2 attribute stimuli (&quot;Pleasant&quot; or &quot;Unpleasant&quot;), a positive (e.g., &quot;Love&quot;) or negative (e.g., &quot;Murder&quot;) target stimulus, and 2 relational terms, &quot;Similar&quot; and &quot;Opposite,&quot; as response options. Participants were required to respond as quickly and accurately as possible across blocks of trials, with half of the blocks requiring responses that were deemed consistent (e.g., Pleasant-Love-Similar), and the other half inconsistent (e.g., Pleasant-Love- Opposite), with natural verbal relations. Shorter mean latencies were predicted for consistent than for inconsistent blocks. Two separate experiments supported this prediction. Event-related potentials, gathered during the second experiment, also proved to be sensitive to the IRAP, yielding more negative waveforms for inconsistent relative to consistent blocks of trials. A theoretical interpretation of the IRAP effect is offered, and important directions for future research are highlighted.