Cognitive Sophistication Does Not Attenuate the Bias Blind Spot

Department of Graduate Psychology, James Madison University, 800 South Main Street, Harrisonburg, VA 22807, USA.
Journal of Personality and Social Psychology (Impact Factor: 5.08). 06/2012; 103(3):506-19. DOI: 10.1037/a0028857
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The so-called bias blind spot arises when people report that thinking biases are more prevalent in others than in themselves. Bias turns out to be relatively easy to recognize in the behaviors of others, but often difficult to detect in one's own judgments. Most previous research on the bias blind spot has focused on bias in the social domain. In 2 studies, we found replicable bias blind spots with respect to many of the classic cognitive biases studied in the heuristics and biases literature (e.g., Tversky & Kahneman, 1974). Further, we found that none of these bias blind spots were attenuated by measures of cognitive sophistication such as cognitive ability or thinking dispositions related to bias. If anything, a larger bias blind spot was associated with higher cognitive ability. Additional analyses indicated that being free of the bias blind spot does not help a person avoid the actual classic cognitive biases. We discuss these findings in terms of a generic dual-process theory of cognition.

1 Follower
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The Cognitive Reflection Test (CRT; Frederick, 2005) is designed to measure the tendency to override a prepotent response alternative that is incorrect and to engage in further reflection that leads to the correct response. It is a prime measure of the miserly information processing posited by most dual process theories. The original three-item test may be becoming known to potential participants, however. We examined a four-item version that could serve as a substitute for the original. Our data show that it displays a .58 correlation with the original version and that it has very similar relationships with cognitive ability, various thinking dispositions, and with several other rational thinking tasks. Combining the two versions into a seven-item test resulted in a measure of miserly processing with substantial reliability (.72). The seven-item version was a strong independent predictor of performance on rational thinking tasks after the variance accounted for by cognitive ability and thinking dispositions had been partialled out.
    Thinking and Reasoning 10/2013; 20(2):147-168. DOI:10.1080/13546783.2013.844729 · 1.12 Impact Factor
  • The Journal of Portfolio Management 01/2014; 40(2):128-143. DOI:10.3905/jpm.2014.40.2.128 · 0.43 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Charlton's (2009) Clever Sillies model argues that high IQ people lack common sense and advocate foolish ideas due to the personality disposition that is associated with high IQ. We argue that the “Clever Silly” model proposed by Charlton has several shortcomings and needs to be nuanced. We suggest that it is useful to distinguish between scholars who advocate clever silly ideas in a context in which they are popular (followers) and those who originate them. The originators are close to the artistic genius type while the followers are the more average academics, especially in non-science subjects. The former has highly original and controversial ideas and take considerable risk for the potential high socioeconomic status pay off involved. The latter is less inclined to take risks and thus strikes the optimum balance, in terms of conformity and non-conformity, in order to showcase their intelligence but gain the benefits of conforming.
    Intelligence 04/2015; 49. DOI:10.1016/j.intell.2014.12.008 · 2.67 Impact Factor