Attitudes cause behaviors: A cross-lagged panel analysis

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Cross-lagged panel correlations were computed between attitudes and behaviors with respect to college students' ratings of 4 issues: Jimmy Carter's presidential candidacy, Gerald Ford's candidacy, drinking, and religion. For all 4 issues, attitudes showed causal predominance over behaviors. These results are interpreted as supporting W. J. McGuire's (1976) views on the attitude-behavior relationship but as being contrary to A. W. Wicker's (1969) situational determinism and self-perception theory. H. C. Kelman's (1974) view of reciprocal causation between attitudes and behaviors is also discussed. (24 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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