Three studies explored the connection between social perception processes and individual differences in the use of affective and cognitive information in relation to attitudes. Study 1 revealed that individuals high in need for affect (NFA) accentuated differences in evaluations of warm and cold traits, whereas individuals high in need for cognition (NFC) accentuated differences in evaluations of competent and incompetent traits. Study 2 revealed that individual differences in NFA predicted liking of warm or cold targets, whereas individual differences in NFC predicted perceptions of competent or incompetent targets. Furthermore, the effects of NFA and NFC were independent of structural bases and meta-bases of attitudes. Study 3 revealed that differences in the evaluation of warm and cold traits mediated the effects of NFA and NFC on liking of targets. The implications for social perception processes and for individual differences in affect–cognition are discussed.
- Individual Differences
- Social Perception