Two studies assessed lay people's bio-medical and psycho-social attributions for recovery, using implicit and explicit methods, and one of them, Study 2, also measured individual differences in health locus of control. Participants were presented with a vignette of a patient with a severe disease for which chances of recovery vary widely, who had high or low levels of medical care and high or low psycho-social resources. They estimated his chances to recover from his illness (implicit attributions), and then, imagining another patient with the same disease, evaluated the relative importance of medical, psycho-social and other factors for his chances for recovery (explicit method). Findings show a moderation effect by assessment method: the explicit method pointed to dominance of biomedical attributions and the implicit method indicated dominance of psycho-social attributions. In addition, internal health locus of control was positively correlated with psycho-social attributions and external health locus of control (powerful others and chance) was correlated with biomedical attributions for recovery. The findings are discussed in relation to dual-process models of reasoning and self-serving defensive processes.
- Cognitive-experiential self theory
- Health locus of control
- Implicit and explicit methods
- Recovery attributions