When assessing the reliability of a self-report measure of personality, it is common practice to compute internal consistency coefficients. A test that is reliable should exhibit high correlations across items; a test that is unreliable should not. How do implicit measures fare concerning this criterion? By and large, we do not know. Word fragment completions are believed to have low internal consistency, at least as a measure of memory (Buchner & Wippich, 2000). Similarly, our impression of projective measures of accessible constructs (Higgins, 1996) and motives (McClelland, 1987) is that such measures rarely approach the internal consistency of self-report tests. Concerning latency-based measures, Büchner and Wippich (2000) offered the opinion that such measures should exhibit reasonably high internal consistency coefficients, specifically because responses are quite constrained in comparison to more projective tests of memory. However, computing the internal consistency of "speed" is somewhat irrelevant. Participants who are fast on one item will be fast on another. So trials in a reaction time test are quite different than items on a self-report test, in that it is crucial to remove speed from the former. When this is done, internal consistency coefficients can sometimes be low.
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