Publications

Reversing the affective congruency effect: The role of target word frequency of occurrence

In this research the outcome of an affective priming experiment is shown to critically depend on the frequency of occurrence of the target words used. Low frequency target words (5.7 occurrences per million words) resulted in an affective congruency effect, i.e., faster responses following affectively congruent than incongruent primes. High frequency target words (32.6 occurrences per million) resulted in a reverse priming effect, i.e., faster responses following incongruent than congruent primes. The size of the congruency effect was larger than the size of the reverse priming effect, thus masking its emergence when word frequency was not taken into account. We propose that target word frequency has its influence via an accessibility-related mechanism having to do with differences in observed changes in affect between prime and target. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2007 APA, all rights reserved) (from the journal abstract)