Implicit bias, executive control and information processing speed

Bruce J. Diamonda, Elizabeth L. Hainesa, Amy C. Moorsb, Joseph E. Mosleyc, Daniel McKima, Jareda Moreinesd

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study examined the relationships between processing speed and Implicit Association Test (IAT) performance using a race and a socially neutral IAT, in 51 European American adults ranging in age from 19 to 55. Simple reaction time was not correlated with IAT performance. However, faster higher-level processing speed on a 3-back task was correlated with lower transformed scores and shorter latencies on multiple implicit association race and neutral measures. Higher-level processing may account for approximately 70% of this relationship with general processing speed accounting for the remainder. The relationship between higher-level processing and implicit bias may be mediated by shared executive processes. However, patterns of neurobehavioral engagement and activation may also reflect a systemic response to diverse stimuli, suggesting that in individuals with lower implicit bias, executive processes are moreefficient resulting in faster higher-level processing and in appearing or being less biased.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)183-193
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Cognition and Culture
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • IAT
  • Information processing speed
  • executive function
  • implicit bias
  • working memory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Cultural Studies
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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