Cross-validating the Berlin Affective Word List

Behav Res Methods. 2006 Nov;38(4):606-9. doi: 10.3758/bf03193892.


We introduce the Berlin Affective Word List (BAWL) in order to provide researchers with a German database containing both emotional valence and imageability ratings for more than 2,200 German words. The BAWL was cross-validated using a forced choice valence decision task in which two distinct valence categories (negative or positive) had to be assigned to a highly controlled selection of 360 words according to varying emotional content (negative, neutral, or positive). The reaction time (RT) results corroborated the valence categories: Words that had been rated as "neutral" in the norms yielded maximum RTs. The BAWL is intended to help researchers create stimulus materials for a wide range of experiments dealing with the emotional processing of words.

Publication types

  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Affect*
  • Databases as Topic*
  • Female
  • Germany
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Reaction Time
  • Speech Perception*
  • Vocabulary*