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Natural Connections: Bees Sting and Snakes Bite, But They Are Still Nature

Three studies are reported that examine the effects of valence on connectedness with nature. In Study 1, results showed that the implicit association test (IAT) effect is robust to the valence of the stimuli. Participants showed stronger self-nature than self built associations, regardless of whether the stimuli were positively or negatively valenced. Study 2 further tested that the positive IAT effect is due to the valence of the stimuli and showed an equally large IAT effect and a strong positive correlation between the positively and negatively valenced IAT stimuli.In Study 3, we address potential confounding effects of valence with a newly matched set of stimuli. Results were consistent with our prior findings in showing that valence of the stimuli did not affect the IAT scores. We conclude that while there are individual differences in connectedness with nature, such beliefs are not affected by positive or negative aspects of natural or built environments.

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