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Something smells fishy: Olfactory suspicion cues improve performance on the Moses illusion and Wason rule discovery task

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Abstract

Feelings of suspicion alert people not to take information at face value. In many languages, suspicion is metaphorically associated with smell; in English, this smell is “fishy”. We tested whether incidental exposure to fishy smells influences information processing. In Study 1, participants exposed to incidental fishy smells (vs. no odor) while answering questions were more likely to detect a semantic distortion (the “Moses illusion”), but not more likely to falsely identify an undistorted question as misleading. In Study 2, participants exposed to fishy smells (vs. no odor) were more likely to engage in negative hypothesis testing (falsifying their own initial hunch), resulting in better performance on the Wason rule discovery task. These findings show that incidental olfactory suspicion cues can affect performance on social as well as nonsocial reasoning tasks.

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... Conversations often incorporate expressions using temperature, spatial distance, or taste to facilitate understanding. This is a method of connecting the target to more concrete sources acquired from sensory experience to facilitate the understanding of abstract concepts [24], such as personalities, morality, social relationships, or suspicion. For example, the sense of smell is metaphorically associated with the concept of suspicion [25,26]. ...
... For example, the sense of smell is metaphorically associated with the concept of suspicion [25,26]. Smell, which is an evolutionary mechanism, has long been linked to the understanding that rotten food may endanger life; therefore, a substance that smells bad is suspicious [24]. Thus, individuals have learned from experience that smell is linked to suspicion, which is demonstrated by using the idiomatic expression "something smells fishy." ...
... Over the last decade, studies on concepts related to metaphors activated by olfactory cues have increased. The feeling of suspicion has been found to be activated in groups who had experienced fishy odors, and therefore, such groups processed information in a more critical and meticulous manner [24]. In another study, the group that experienced the warm scent of vanilla perceived a space to be populated by more people than groups that had experienced the cold scent of peppermint, which led to an increase in individuals' capability and intention to purchase luxury goods [30]. ...
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Sensory experiences affect individuals’ judgment and behavior through the metaphors that experiences carry. The literature has demonstrated that the perception of warmth activates concepts related to positive meaning and metaphors, such as consideration and gentleness, which increase individuals’ tendency to help or relate to others. This study hypothesized that warm olfactory stimuli influence intention toward prosocial behavior by increasing the need for social connectedness (NSC). The first experiment (n = 123) demonstrated that the actual warm scent increased participants’ intentions for prosocial behavior and that the effect of the actual warm scent was mediated by NSC. Using Amazon Mechanical Turk (MTurk), a second experiment (n = 995) was conducted the showed that warm scent simulated via visual stimuli (i.e., a multimodal approach) led to prosocial behavior intention as well. The results of the study provide academic and managerial insights into how to improve prosocial behavior intention, which is essential for the sustainable development of societies.
... This experimental paradigm provides a test of the potential influence of fishy smells: Would an incidental fishy smell make it more likely that people notice something is wrong with Moses? To find out, we included the above Moses question and its likes in a questionnaire that participants completed in a booth that did or did not have a fishy odor (D. S. Lee, Kim, & Schwarz, 2015, study 1). Participants received instructions from an experimenter who was blind to conditions and were then assigned to an experimental booth in which another experimenter had attached a small piece of paper sprayed with fish oil (or water) under the table. ...
... In combination, the Moses study (D. S. Lee et al., 2015, study 1) and false memory study (Sheaffer et al., 2017, study 2) converge on indicating that olfactory suspicion cues can curb gullibility. In the Moses study, an incidental fishy smell improved the identification of a misleading question without inducing a bias to falsely identify an undistorted question as problematic. ...
... When distrust and suspicion signal that things may not be what they seem, processing is oriented towards potential alternative interpretations of reality (see Mayo, 2015;Mayo, Chapter 8 this volume). As reviewed above, this influence is sufficient to overcome one of the most robust biases in the psychology of reasoning, namely reliance on confirmatory hypothesis testing strategies (D. S. Lee et al., 2015;Mayo et al., 2014). ...
... This experimental paradigm provides a test of the potential influence of fishy smells: Would an incidental fishy smell make it more likely that people notice something is wrong with Moses? To find out, we included the above Moses question and its likes in a questionnaire that participants completed in a booth that did or did not have a fishy odor (D. Lee, Kim, & Schwarz, 2015, Study 1). Participants received instructions from an experimenter who was blind to conditions and were then assigned to an experimental booth in which another experimenter had attached a small piece of paper sprayed with fish oil (or water) under the table. ...
... In combination, the Moses study (D. Lee et al., 2015, Study 1) and false memory study (Sheaffer et al., 2017, Study 2) converge on indicating that olfactory suspicion cues can curb gullibility. In the Moses study, an incidental fishy smell improved the identification of a misleading question without inducing a bias to falsely identify an undistorted question as problematic. ...
... When distrust and suspicion signal that things may not be what they seem, processing is oriented towards potential alternative interpretations of reality (see Mayo, 2015, this volume). As reviewed above, this influence is sufficient to overcome one of the most robust biases in the psychology of reasoning, namely reliance on confirmatory hypothesis testing strategies (D. Lee et al., 2015;Mayo et al., 2014). ...
Chapter
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In all languages studied, suspicion is metaphorically associated with the sense of smell. The relevant smell is a smell of rotting organic matter that one may eat. In some languages, one specific smell dominates the metaphors; in English, that smell is fishy. The smell-suspicion link is presumably adaptive – if something you may eat doesn’t smell right, you better inspect it closely before proceeding. Given this link, does incidental exposure to a fishy smell make people more suspicious and does this curb gullibility? The empirical answer is a resounding Yes. Incidental exposure to a fishy smell reduces (i) trust in economic trust games and (ii) cooperation in public good games; increases (iii) the detection of misleading presuppositions in language comprehension and (iv) the detection of discrepancies between different versions of a story; (v) decreases confirmation bias and (vi) increases attempts at falsification (negative hypothesis testing). Conversely, making people suspicious through a social manipulation (vii) increases their sensitivity to fishy smells and (viii) improves smell identification. These effects emerge on classic reasoning tasks, such as the Wason rule discovery task or the Moses illusion, and standard trust games. They do not emerge for aversive smells without a metaphorical suspicion link (e.g., fart smell), but may not require that the smell is the one specified by one’s native language. We discuss the accumulating findings in the broader context of cognition as situated, experiential, embodied, and pragmatic and offer conjectures about broader implications.
... Further research substantiated these findings; the illusion partially depends on the direction of focus (Bredart & Modolo, 1988), higher semantic relatedness between the names used in the questions (e.g., Noah and Moses vs. Noah and Adam) increases the illusion (Van Oostendorp & De Mul, 1990), and phonetic relatedness (e.g., identical number of syllables, identical first vowel) increases the illusion (Shafto & MacKay, 2000). In addition, lower processing fluency decreases the illusion (Song & Schwarz, 2008), expertise decreases the illusion (Cantor & Marsh, 2017), and olfactory cues metaphorically related to suspicion decrease the illusion (Lee, Kim, & Schwarz, 2015). In addition, there seem to be interindividual differences in access to long-term memory knowledge as well as shortterm memory capacity that influence the illusion (Hannon & Daneman, 2001). ...
... First, we wanted to examine again the cooperative communication explanation. As discussed, Song and Schwarz (2008), as well as Lee et al. (2015), showed that under circumstances that prompt a critical mindset (i.e., low processing fluency) and calling the cooperative context into question (i.e., "fishy" smells), the illusion is reduced. In fact, one might consider that the cooperative communication mind-set feeds into the partial-matching hypothesis. ...
Article
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When people answer the question "How many animals of each kind did Moses take on the Ark?", they usually respond with "two," although Moses does not appear in the biblical story of the Ark. We investigated this "Moses illusion" in a multiple-choice format and tested the influence of monetary incentives on the illusion's strength. Thereby, we addressed the role of a cooperative communication context for the illusion's emergence, as well as the role of participants' motivation. In four experiments (total N = 914), we found that the Moses illusion persists in a multiple-choice format. As the multiple-choice format realizes a cooperative context in which the correct answer is always available, we exclude a cooperative context explanation for the illusion. Monetary incentives reduced the strength of the illusion. However, the reduction was numerically and statistically small. We thereby show that the illusion is not due to violations of cooperative communications, and not due to a lack of motivation. The multiple-choice approach will facilitate further research on the Moses illusion and the data provide additional evidence for the Moses illusion's empirical robustness and constrain its theoretical explanations.
... We found that participants who saw an untrustworthy face thought of significantly more disconfirming series compared with participants who saw the trustworthy face. (The same effect was demonstrated using a fishy smell as a distrust manipulation; Lee, Kim, & Schwarz, 2015.) We replicated this effect in another study in which we did not manipulate distrust but rather measured the chronic individual disposition of trusting using the Yamagishi and Yamagishi (1994) scale (Mayo et al., 2014). ...
... However, whereas the validation process is information dependent (and therefore if the right information is not activated, one might miss an error), the distrust mind-set is preactivated, affecting the nature of information processing. Indeed, it was demonstrated that in a distrust mind-set, participants were less fooled and noticed the inaccuracy in the Moses question (Lee et al., 2015). Reading a story, seeing a movie, hearing a podcast, and much more tend to be carried out in a trust mind-set wherein people expect things to be as they are. ...
Article
A common claim is that people have an easier time accepting information than rejecting it, resulting in gullibility. In this article, I review empirical research demonstrating how the human mind is equipped with successful and spontaneous rejection processes that may protect us from disinformation.
... This finding aligns with Rodionova and Minor (2017), who found that peppermint scent did not improve students' performance of text copying test based mostly on attention, which was related to vigilance. Also, this finding may be due to individual differences regarding what a person considers to be suspicious (Lee et al., 2015), and because vigilance depends on a viewer's cognitive goal (Pieters & Wedel, 2007;Rayner et al., 2001Rayner et al., , 2008Yarbus, 1967). As explained by Lee et al. (2015), characteristics of an interaction or interaction partner typically elicit our suspicions in daily life. ...
... Also, this finding may be due to individual differences regarding what a person considers to be suspicious (Lee et al., 2015), and because vigilance depends on a viewer's cognitive goal (Pieters & Wedel, 2007;Rayner et al., 2001Rayner et al., , 2008Yarbus, 1967). As explained by Lee et al. (2015), characteristics of an interaction or interaction partner typically elicit our suspicions in daily life. For example, one may discover the other party's ulterior intentions and motives (Kramer, 1996) or other "cues" that may suggest the possibility of deception (e.g., fidgeting; DePaulo et al., 2003). ...
Article
Extant studies have revealed enhancing effects of scent on performance. The role of scent, and emission method, in the context of performing repetitive tasks over prolonged duration in promoting alertness, vigilance, and memory was examined. Seventy-three participants were randomly assigned to one of three conditions (no scent, peppermint scent emitted continuously, or peppermint scent emitted intermittently) while tasked to monitor and identify suspicious cues for close to 2 hr. Pre- and post-intervention surveys, psychomotor vigilance test, and eye tracker were used as study instruments. Results showed that scent directly enhanced information recall and mitigated the deterioration of alertness, especially as subjects became fatigued. Intermittent emission showed stronger effects over continuous emission in marginally enhancing alertness and memory. Scent did not appear to promote greater vigilance. Suggestions for future studies and implications for management of employees in fatigue situations are discussed.
... • Study 2: Students in a hallway sprayed with fish smell invested significantly less in an economic game relying on trust compared to students in either a fart spray or control condition. Lee, Kim and Schwarz (2015) also found that a fishy odor affected critical reasoning via suspicion. ...
... • Results from the Wason task provide support for the findings of Lee, Kim and Schwarz (2015), that exposure to a fishy smell increases critical thinking via suspicion. o Unfortunately, the cell sizes were insufficient to further analyse the interaction with personality factors. ...
Conference Paper
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Results Background Method Conclusions References Participants were 112 (70.5% female) undergraduate psychology students and a sample of convenience, mean age 28.92 (SD = 9.79).
... This relationship is also reflected in the observation that those who generated at least one negative test were significantly lower in trust (M = 3.98) than those who did not (M = 4.23). This higher rate of negative testing and the resulting better performance on the Wason rule-discovery task due to a distrust mindset were replicated by Lee, Kim, and Schwarz (2015), who induced the distrust mindset with its metaphorical smell of "fishy". Specifically, Lee et al. (2015) found that participants exposed to fishy smells (vs. ...
... This higher rate of negative testing and the resulting better performance on the Wason rule-discovery task due to a distrust mindset were replicated by Lee, Kim, and Schwarz (2015), who induced the distrust mindset with its metaphorical smell of "fishy". Specifically, Lee et al. (2015) found that participants exposed to fishy smells (vs. no odour) were more likely to engage in negative testing and to discern the correct rule on the Wason rule-discovery task. ...
Article
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The current review proposes that exposure to a specific untrustworthy source of information engages a mode of thought—a distrust mindset—that is also evoked by incidental distrust contexts and by personality characteristics. The review summarises empirical research demonstrating that—in contrast to trust, which leads to the familiar congruent type of cognitive processes—distrust triggers a spontaneous activation of alternatives and incongruent associations for a given concept. These alternatives dilute the activation level of the given concept, indicating that our mind can spontaneously stop the congruent-processing flow. Consequently, distrust blocks congruent effects such as confirmatory biases, accessibility effects, stereotyping, and routine reasoning. Thus, the review suggests that the basic flow of our cognition is (dis)trust dependent. The review concludes with a discussion of the effect of the distrust mindset as a demonstration of (1) situated cognition and (2) a spontaneous negation process.
... Fluency can also be manipulated by other ambient factors. In one in triguing study, Lee, Kim, and Schwarz (2015) suggested that the environment might be changed to make something feel a bit "off." By putting fish oil under a desk-creating the ambient feeling of something fishy or strange, even though this occurred below the level of overt awareness-they increased participants' likelihood of detecting a semantic distor tion or to engage in negative hypothesis testing (falsifying their own initial hunch). ...
Chapter
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This chapter discusses the general impact of context on the aesthetic experience. It is de­ signed to anticipate the other chapters’ discussions of context’s specific areas—the so­ cial, the physical or institutional, information and framing, museums, background or per­ sonality-related features. Here, the authors offer a more general consideration discussing key aspects such as: What even is context? How can it best be thought about? What are the key issues that might be considered? And, especially, how can it be generally integrat­ ed into present knowledge of models of aesthetic processing experience? Beginning with the interest in context throughout the history of aesthetics, the chapter builds a presenta­ tion of empirical approaches and especially theory, focusing on context’s main layers and points of influence. It then discusses how key context issues might be considered in mod­ els of aesthetic processing, with the goal of providing a framework for better approaching context aspects in this book and in one’s own future studies. This is also interspersed with what the authors consider to be some of the more intriguing studies in order to spur readers’ thinking about the potential for studying context. The chapter concludes with some major issues, some candidates for future consideration, and suggestions for further reading and education.
... Furthermore, the extant literature in embodied cognition suggests that cognitive representations are grounded in the brain's sensorimotor systems (i.e., sensation and action of the body; Niedenthal et al., 2005;Barsalou, 2010). Notably, given the nature of metaphorical expressions that delivers beyond the literal meaning (Landau et al., 2010;Lakoff, 2012), many scholars support the argument that there is a significant association between bodily experience and emotional experience in, for example, "coldness" (Zhong and Leonardelli, 2008), "comfort food" (Troisi and Gabriel, 2011), "fishiness" (Lee et al., 2015), "heavy-heartedness" (Min and Choi, 2016), "highness" (Schubert, 2005), "warmth" (Williams and Bargh, 2008), and "weight" (Jostmann et al., 2009). Taken together, these findings propose an intriguing possibility that the metaphorical sense of pricking as in the expression "prick of conscience" may be associated with physical prick (e.g., a needle prick). ...
Article
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“Prick of conscience” is a phrase to express feelings of guilt in both English and Korean. Particularly in South Korea, guilt is metaphorically associated with a sense of touch by pricking. Koreans commonly express feelings of guilt by using the metaphor, “It pricks my conscience.” Across three studies, we examined whether prick of conscience (i.e., feelings of guilt) is grounded in bodily experiences of physical prick (e.g., a needle prick), using a sample of Koreans. Participants who recalled past unethical acts were less likely to choose a needle prick rather than medication as a treatment for indigestion, whereas those who recalled ethical acts presented no significant difference in their willingness to receive either treatment (Study 1). Participants who decided to lie sensed the finger prick deeper and felt more pain as compared to those in the truth group or the control group (Study 2). Lastly, participants who had the finger prick rendered harsher moral judgments than participants in the control condition (Study 3). In line with an embodied cognition framework, these findings suggest that prick of conscience is not just a linguistic metaphor but can be embodied as physical sensations in forms of pricking.
... It is also not clear whether an awareness of the ambient odour contributed to the effect observed in this initial data. This also applies to other studies where an ambient odour was used to explore the effects of the olfactory metaphor "something smells fishy" on behaviour (Lee, Kim, & Schwarz, 2015;Lee & Schwarz, 2012). The smell of fish was found to induce feelings of suspicion, and vice versa, feelings of suspicion affected detection of a fishy odour (Lee & Schwarz, 2012). ...
Article
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Grounded theories hold sensorimotor activation is critical to language processing. Such theories have focused predominantly on the dominant senses of sight and hearing. Relatively fewer studies have assessed mental simulation within touch, taste, and smell, even though they are critically implicated in communication for important domains, such as health and wellbeing. We review work that sheds light on whether perceptual activation from lesser studied modalities contribute to meaning in language. We critically evaluate data from behavioural, imaging, and cross-cultural studies. We conclude that evidence for sensorimotor simulation in touch, taste, and smell is weak. Comprehending language related to these senses may instead rely on simulation of emotion, as well as crossmodal simulation of the “higher” senses of vision and audition. Overall, the data suggest the need for a refinement of embodiment theories, as not all sensory modalities provide equally strong evidence for mental simulation.
... Indeed, it could be argued that competitors are sources of distrust to the extent that they hold negatively interdependent goals in relation to the reasoner. However, in this line of research distrust was unrelated to the reasoning task: It was either measured by a scale explicitly unrelated to the reasoning task (Mayo, Alfasi, & Schwarz, 2014, Study 1), or primed by an untrustworthy face explicitly unrelated to the reasoning task (Mayo et al., 2014, Study 2), or primed by fishy smells (Lee, Kim, & Schwarz, 2015). Again, the source of distrust was not a social comparison target. ...
Article
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Confirmation is a widespread tendency to seek, use, interpret or remember information in such a way as to corroborate one’s hypothesis. We review various conceptions of confirmation and classify them as a function of whether they depict this phenomenon as a cognitive failure, a form of motivational prioritisation, or a pragmatic strategy. Then, we note that such a systematic and pervasive phenomenon must be a central mechanism of human activity serving an important and specific social function. We propose that confirmation is an adaptive mechanism that serves the function of coping with competitive situations. This general proposition is broken down into three implications: Confirmation occurs to a larger extent (1) when there is competition, (2) when competition is threatening, (3) when competition threatens one’s feelings of competence. A research programme is reported to illustrate each of these implications.
... Given that DePaulo et al. (1997) have found individuals' confidence in their own abilities is often much higher than warranted by their actual accuracy levels, it could be that the increased confidence game-players felt in their ability spurred them to make their judgments more quickly, and thus with less accuracy as a result. Another possibility is that because people often tend to base their assessments of veracity on their gut feelings and emotional responses (Lee, Kim, & Schwarz, 2015;Schwarz, 2015), perhaps the game, by offering more opportunities to practice, creates inflated feelings of mastery and confidence in identifying deception relative to the PPT lecture. For participants in the lecture condition, the lack of practice may have better aligned their confidence level to their skills and abilities, encouraging them to practice the skills they learned in a more balanced and timely manner. ...
Article
Well-designed video games can teach people to decrease their reliance on heuristics and biases, especially in deception detection, where people might be resistant to training or unaware that training is needed. We created the serious game VERITAS in which users ask questions of pre-recorded actors and attempt to determine the veracity of the answers supplied. The efficacy of the game was tested in two different experiments with college student players. We hypothesized that reducing reactance and enhancing self-affirmation of players would mitigate the resistance to training about bias relevant to a deception detection context. We found that compared to a traditional lecture, VERITAS players were more engaged and motivated by the training and outperformed the traditional lecture in training participants about their knowledge of deception cues, and to identify truthful statements but not deceptive ones. The players of VERITAS also showed improvement from the first to the second scenario in the game. These results reveal that perhaps truth and deception detection are separate skills which require different types of training.
... Some empirical support for the embodied nature of metaphor comprehension has been provided by demonstrations that sensorimotor input can influence metaphor comprehension (Ackerman, Nocera, & Bargh, 2010;Gibbs & Matlock, 2008;Lee, Kim, & Schwarz, 2015;Richardson, Spivey, Barsalou, & McRae, 2003;Wilson & Gibbs, 2007;Zhong & Leonardelli, 2008;Zwaan & Taylor, 2006). For example, Wilson and Gibbs (2007) found that people read a metaphorical phrase such as "push the argument" more quickly immediately after they had made an appropriate body movement (pushing) rather than one that was inappropriate (chewing). ...
Article
We review psychological research bearing on major theories of metaphor comprehension. A broad survey of behavioral studies is coupled with findings from recent meta-analyses of neuroimaging studies of metaphor processing. We identify three broad theoretical positions that have been the foci of research efforts: analogy, categorization, and conceptual mapping. The first two of these emphasize relatively well-specified information-processing models; the third links metaphor comprehension to embodied cognition. Our review evaluates the evidence that has been taken as support for each view, and then critically examines studies that bear on competing hypotheses derived from opposing theories. Finally, we discuss issues that future research on metaphor should address. In particular, we call for greater consideration of the pragmatic functions of metaphor in context, of its emotional impact, and of its links to literary interpretation. We suggest ways in which mechanisms based on analogy and conceptual combination might be integrated to create a richer conception of metaphor understanding.
... The influence of fishy smells is sufficient to override individual differences in trust(Sebastian et al., 2017), and aversive smells that lack a metaphorical association with suspicion (such as the smell of flatulence, implemented through commercially available fart spray) do not undermine cooperation (S.W.S.Lee & Schwarz, 2012, Studies 1 and 2;Sebastian et al., 2017). Fishy smells also increase cognitive vigilance, as reflected in increased detection of misleading claims (D.S.Lee, Kim, & Schwarz, 2015, Study 1) and decreased confirmation bias (D.S.Lee et al., 2015, Study 2), paralleling the impact of other manipulations of interpersonal distrust(Mayo, Alfasi, & Schwarz, 2014).As in the case of social and physical warmth, the relationship is bidirectional. Inducing social suspicion through odd behavior of the experimenter improves the correct identification of fishy smells (S.W.S.Lee & Schwarz, 2012, Study 3) and increases sensitivity to the presence of faint fishy smells in a signal detection paradigm (Study 7). ...
Chapter
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Reviews research on embodied cognition and explores its implications for the conceptualization of attitudes.
... Since the moral emotion of disgust likely originated in physical disgust to impure foods and substances (Haidt et al., 1997), issues of smell and taste are closely intertwined with issues of cleanliness and purity. In terms of smells, two papers take ENVIRONMENTAL CUES 17 inspiration from the common words used to describe suspicion and foul smells (e.g., "fishy"; Lee, Kim, & Schwarz, 2015;Lee & Schwarz, 2012). They show that literally fishy smells (fish oil) lead people to view situations and others with suspicion, thus displaying less trust or generosity. ...
Article
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Recent psychological research on deception has focused on environmental cues—features of the physical and temporal environment (e.g., money, mirrors) that can influence an individual’s decision to deceive. Although research on the social situation of negotiation has examined numerous reasons why negotiators deceive, it has not often explored the role of environmental cues. The current paper seeks to draw greater attention to environmental cues in the literature on deception in negotiation. After synthesizing the psychological evidence on environmental cues and deception in individual decision-making situations, I translate that evidence for the social decision-making situation of negotiation and the more general set of social decision-making situations in organizations (using mergers and acquisitions as an example). Ultimately, theoretical overlap between the deception and negotiation literatures leads me to conclude that environmental cues could have an even greater influence on deception in social decision-making situations, suggesting that scholars of negotiation and several other management topics would benefit by considering the surrounding physical and temporal environment.
... For example, presenting an illusion question in a difficult-to-read font produces fewer illusions than an easy-to-read font (Song & Schwarz, 2008), How proper names influence each other 10 presumably because a challenging font reduces the fluency of reading the text, which makes the text seem less familiar and initiates greater scrutiny of the text, improving detection of the incorrect information. Consistent with this interpretation, a cue hinting that an error might exist can also trigger a more critical examination of the question: Exposure to an odor of a fishy smell increases suspicion of the context (i.e., find the situation "fishy"), which in turn makes participants more likely to detect errors in Moses illusion questions compared with no odor exposure (Lee, Kim, & Schwarz, 2015). ...
Article
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Research has documented that proper names are more difficult to learn and remember than other types of words. Various causes of this difficulty have been proposed to better understand how proper names are represented in memory and the degree to which names compete with each other. In the retrieval of names, some studies show competition, whereas other studies find facilitation. During comprehension, names demonstrate competition by causing a Moses illusion: People erroneously answer invalid questions such as “How many animals did Moses take on the ark?”, failing to detect that Noah is the correct name for the question. Errors in both name retrieval and comprehension are more likely when the correct name and distractor name sound similar, share biographical characteristics, or have some visual resemblance. However, shared visual information has played a competitive role more consistently in name comprehension than retrieval, an asymmetry that remains to be investigated.
... also more likely to notice misleading questions and to critically examine their own beliefs. 7,29,41 If their critical analysis reveals something faulty, they will reject the message. But if the arguments hold up to scrutiny, a message that initially felt wrong may end up being persuasive. ...
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** Note: This post includes the text accepted for publication, which was subsequently highly copy-edited to fit the magazine format of the journal. ** Erroneous beliefs are difficult to correct. Worse, popular correction strategies may backfire and further increase the spread and acceptance of misinformation. People evaluate the truth of a statement by assessing its compatibility with other things they believe, its internal consistency, amount of supporting evidence, acceptance by others, and the credibility of the source. To do so, they can draw on relevant details (an effortful analytic strategy) or attend to the subjective experience of processing fluency (a less effortful intuitive strategy). Throughout, fluent processing facilitates acceptance of the statement – when thoughts flow smoothly, people nod along. Correction strategies that make false information more fluent (e.g., through repetition or pictures) can therefore increase its later acceptance. We review recent research and offer recommendations for more effective correction strategies.,
... Lastly, recent research revealed that gustatory and olfactory stimuli also go hand in hand with more abstract concepts. As "chicken soup for the soul" depicts, comfort food actually protects people from a threat to one's sense of belongingness (Troisi & Gabriel, 2011), and fishy smells, metaphorically associated with suspicion, enhance performance on reasoning tasks (Lee, Kim, & Schwarz, 2015). ...
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Heavy-heartedness (light-heartedness), among more than two hundred metaphors related to heart, indicates negative (positive) affects. Although these metaphors are generally understood rhetorically, this study explores whether there is any literal connection between either of these two states and one's perception of weight. Participants who recalled a heavy-heartening (vs. light-heartening) past event estimated more weight of an object (Study 1). While watching weightlifting and pole vaulting competition clips, people in heavy-hearted (vs. light-hearted) states predicted that players' success is less likely (Study 2). However, this result was not observed while people in both states watched non-weight-related games, such as golf putting and pool. The findings are congruous with embodied cognition theory and the role of metaphors in our life.
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This is a commentary on Ballantyne’s (in press) review of the intellectual humility literature in a special issue of the Journal of Positive Psychology. Ballentyne proposes to conceptualize intellectual humility in terms of procedures of evidence-based inquiry rather than in terms of mere openness to different points of view. I endorse that proposal and discuss its implications for the scope of intellectual humility research. I then review variables known to influence evidence-based inquiry, highlighting the role of feelings and metacognitive experiences, and contrast them with other variables discussed in the humility literature. [This is the author version, prior to copy-editing.]
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Current faculty and other stakeholders for higher education have cited a lack of critical thinking within traditional undergraduate students. Some have touted this “soft skill” as a necessary competency for postgraduate employment because others within the private sector have challenged higher education to reconsider how this skill is taught to students. Higher education leaders purport that critical thinking can also be taught through experiential learning across the cocurricular activities of leadership experiences. This non-experimental, descriptive study examined critical thinking development in a sample of traditional undergraduate student leaders at two land-grant universities in which students took the Cornell Critical Thinking Test Level Z (CCTT-Z) and the Wason Rule Discovery Task (WRDT). Results from the study suggested there was a relationship between the incidence of implicit attitudes and poorly demonstrated critical thinking skills, and when controlling for academic level, there were no significant differences between students. Implications for practice include a reasoned account for why such implicit attitudes hinder students’ critical thinking development and why efforts should be made to lessen such biases’ influence.
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Previous studies have shown that contaminating effects of misinformation can be reduced by consciously raising the awareness of eyewitnesses to the discrepancy between the misinformation and the original information (e.g., Tousignant, J. P., Hall, D., & Loftus, E. F. [1986]. Discrepancy detection and vulnerability misleading postevent information. Memory & Cognition, 14(4), 329-338. doi:10.3758/BF03202511). We tested whether similar effects could be obtained without conscious awareness, by drawing on the metaphor "something smells fishy" linking fishy smells and suspicion (Lee, S. W. S., & Schwarz, N. [2012]. Bidirectionality, mediation, and moderation of metaphorical effects: The embodiment of social suspicion and fishy smells. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 103(5), 737-749. doi:10.1037/a0029708). In a pilot study, we established the replicability and generality of previous findings concerning this metaphorical link. We then examined the effects of the smell-suspicion link on susceptibility to misleading post-event information using the misinformation paradigm. Here, the "something smells fishy" metaphor was used to invoke suspicion and increase discrepancy detection. Forty-eight hours after viewing an event, participants received misinformation in a room sprayed with either a fishy or a neutral smell. As expected, unaware exposure to the fishy smell (compared to the neutral smell) increased discrepancy detection (measured indirectly) and resistance to the contaminating effects of misinformation, eliminating misinformation interference and lowering suggestibility on the final test.
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Extant research indicates that professional law enforcement officers (LEOs) are generally no better than untrained novices at detecting deception. Moreover, traditional training methods are often less effective than no training at all at improving successful detection. Compared to the traditional training, interactive digital games can provide an immersive learning environment for deeper internalization of new information through simulated practices. VERITAS—an interactive digital game—was designed and developed to train LEOs to better detect reliable deception cues when questioning suspects and determining the veracity of their answers. The authors hypothesized that reducing players' reactance would mitigate resistance to training, motivate engagement with materials, and result in greater success at deception detection and knowledge. As hypothesized, LEOs playing VERITAS showed significant improvement in deception detection from the first to the second scenario within the game; and the low-reactance version provided the most effective training. The authors also compared various responses to the game between LEOs and a separate undergraduate student sample. Relative to students, findings show LEOs perceived VERITAS to be significantly more intrinsically motivating, engaging, and appealing as a deception detection activity.
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Recent findings indicate that alexithymia is the result of a multidomain, multidimensional failure of interoception. Whereas much of the literature addresses the cognitive and affective aspects of alexithymia, less is known about the association between the failure of interoception and the process of motivated cue integration. The theory of motivated cue integration integrates high-level control processes with low-level embodied and contextual cues, suggesting that selective attention to internal and contextual cues results in the creation of meaning that, in turn, influences judgment and action generation. Conceptualized as a special case of the cue integration problem, alexithymia may be associated with restricted access to emotional cues, indicating impaired connectivity between low-level embodied cues and top-down goals and values. This problem may also be viewed as a means substitution problem, indicating the individual's need for alternative multisensory information. Based on this reasoning, interventions that exploit awareness-of-sensation techniques (e.g., mindfulness, experiential approach, focusing) may help to improve the distinction between bodily sensation and interpretation and to create meaning of situational state by substitution of inaccessible affective cues with alternative cues. Accordingly, clinicians and neuropsychologists can help individuals who suffer from alexithymia by training them to use awareness-of-sensation techniques and directing their attention to alternative multisensory cues as well as alternative cognitive configurations (e.g., mental images). Integrating peripheral cues in the moment-by-moment generation of meaning and self-regulation can improve affective judgment through the exchange of inaccessible affective cues with alternative ones.
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Abstract constructs such as morality, warmth, and competence are the bread and butter of social psychology. Their antecendents and consequences have been explored frequently using semantic priming, in keeping with early models of memory representation as a semantic network of concept nodes. Contrary to what these models would predict, sensorimotor experiences in multiple modalities have proven capable of activating abstract constructs, even if they are no more than metaphorically related. In this paper, I review illustrative evidence for multimodal priming of abstract constructs through embodied metaphors. This work has implications for debates about the activation of mental content and the form of mental representation. It also highlights the need to address several thorny issues for theoretical advances.
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This chapter reviews research on the role of embodied metaphors in judgment and decision making.
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Feelings of distrust alert people not to take information at face value, which may influence their reasoning strategy. Using the Wason (1960) rule identification task, we tested whether chronic and temporary distrust increase the use of negative hypothesis testing strategies suited to falsify one's own initial hunch. In Study 1, participants who were low in dispositional trust were more likely to engage in negative hypothesis testing than participants high in dispositional trust. In Study 2, trust and distrust were induced through an alleged person-memory task. Paralleling the effects of chronic distrust, participants exposed to a single distrust-eliciting face were 3 times as likely to engage in negative hypothesis testing as participants exposed to a trust-eliciting face. In both studies, distrust increased negative hypothesis testing, which was associated with better performance on the Wason task. In contrast, participants' initial rule generation was not consistently affected by distrust. These findings provide first evidence that distrust can influence which reasoning strategy people adopt. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved).
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reviews research on the impact of affective states on evaluative judgments, presenting evidence that is difficult to reconcile with the assumption that emotional influences on social judgment are mediated by selective recall from memory / rather, the presented research suggests that individuals frequently use their affective state at the time of judgment as a piece of information that may bear on the judgmental task, according to a "how do I feel about it" heuristic extends the informative-functions assumption to research on affective influences on decision making and problem solving, suggesting that affective states may influence the choice of processing strategies / specifically it is argued that negative affective states, which inform the organism that its current situation is problematic, foster the use of effortful, detail oriented, analytical processing strategies, whereas positive affective states foster the use of less effortful heuristic strategies (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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Investigated, in 2 experiments, whether judgments of happiness and satisfaction with one's life are influenced by mood at the time of judgment. In Exp I, moods were induced by asking 61 undergraduates for vivid descriptions of a recent happy or sad event in their lives. In Exp II, moods were induced by interviewing 84 participants on sunny or rainy days. In both experiments, Ss reported more happiness and satisfaction with their life as a whole when in a good mood than when in a bad mood. However, the negative impact of bad moods was eliminated when Ss were induced to attribute their present feelings to transient external sources irrelevant to the evaluation of their lives; but Ss who were in a good mood were not affected by misattribution manipulations. The data suggest that (a) people use their momentary affective states in making judgments of how happy and satisfied they are with their lives in general and (b) people in unpleasant affective states are more likely to search for and use information to explain their state than are people in pleasant affective states. (18 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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A number of philosophers and psychologists stress the importance of disconfirmation in reasoning and suggest that people are instead prone to a general deleterious "confirmation bias." In particular, it is suggested that people tend to test those cases that have the best chance of verifying current beliefs rather than those that have the best chance of falsifying them. We show, however, that many phenomena labeled "confirmation bias" are better understood in terms of a general positive test strategy. With this strategy, there is a tendency to test cases that are expected (or known) to have the property of interest rather than those expected (or known) to lack that property. We show that the positive test strategy can be a very good heuristic for determining the truth or falsity of a hypothesis under realistic conditions. It can, however, lead to systematic errors or inefficiencies. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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Metaphorical effects are commonly assumed to be unidirectional, running from concrete to abstract domains but not vice versa. Noting that metaphorical effects are often found to be bidirectional, we explore how they may be mediated and moderated according to the principles of knowledge accessibility and applicability. Using the example of "something smells fishy" (a metaphorical expression of social suspicion), 7 experiments tested for the behavioral effects of fishy smells on social suspicion among English speakers, the reversed effects of suspicion on smell labeling and detection, and the underlying mechanism. Incidental exposure to fishy smells induced suspicion and undermined cooperation in trust-based economic exchanges in a trust game (Study 1) and a public goods game (Study 2). Socially induced suspicion enhanced the correct labeling of fishy smells, but not other smells (Studies 3a-3c), an effect that could be mediated by the accessibility and moderated by the applicability of metaphorically associated concepts (Studies 4-6). Suspicion also heightened detection sensitivity to low concentrations of fishy smells (Study 7). Bidirectionality, mediation, and moderation of metaphorical effects have important theoretical implications for integrating known wisdom from social cognition with new insights into the embodied and metaphorical nature of human thinking. These findings also highlight the need for exploring the cultural variability and origin of metaphorical knowledge. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved).
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Intuitively, as well as in light of prior research, distrust and creativity appear incompatible. The social consequences of distrust include reluctance to share information, a quality detrimental to creativity in social settings. At the same time, the cognitive concomitants of distrust bear resemblance to creative cognition: Distrust seems to foster thinking about nonobvious alternatives to potentially deceptive appearances. These cognitive underpinnings of distrust hold the provocative implication that distrust may foster creativity. Mirroring these contradictory findings, we suggest that the social versus cognitive consequences of distrust have diverging implications for creativity. We address this question in Study 1 by introducing private/public as a moderating variable for effects of distrust on creativity. Consistent with distrust's social consequences, subliminal distrust (vs. trust) priming had detrimental effects on creative generation presumed to be public. Consistent with distrust's cognitive consequences, though, an opposite tendency emerged in private. Study 2 confirmed a beneficial effect of distrust on private creative generation with a different priming method and pointed to cognitive flexibility as the mediating process. Studies 3 and 4 showed increased category inclusiveness versus increased remote semantic spread after distrust priming, consistent with enhanced cognitive flexibility as a consequence of distrust. Taken together, these results provide evidence for the creativity-enhancing potential of distrust and suggest cognitive flexibility as its underlying mechanism.
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Social cognition is the scientific study of the cognitive events underlying social thought and attitudes. Currently, the field's prevailing theoretical perspectives are the traditional schema view and embodied cognition theories. Despite important differences, these perspectives share the seemingly uncontroversial notion that people interpret and evaluate a given social stimulus using knowledge about similar stimuli. However, research in cognitive linguistics (e.g., Lakoff & Johnson, 1980) suggests that people construe the world in large part through conceptual metaphors, which enable them to understand abstract concepts using knowledge of superficially dissimilar, typically more concrete concepts. Drawing on these perspectives, we propose that social cognition can and should be enriched by an explicit recognition that conceptual metaphor is a unique cognitive mechanism that shapes social thought and attitudes. To advance this metaphor-enriched perspective, we introduce the metaphoric transfer strategy as a means of empirically assessing whether metaphors influence social information processing in ways that are distinct from the operation of schemas alone. We then distinguish conceptual metaphor from embodied simulation--the mechanism posited by embodied cognition theories--and introduce the alternate source strategy as a means of empirically teasing apart these mechanisms. Throughout, we buttress our claims with empirical evidence of the influence of metaphors on a wide range of social psychological phenomena. We outline directions for future research on the strength and direction of metaphor use in social information processing. Finally, we mention specific benefits of a metaphor-enriched perspective for integrating and generating social cognitive research and for bridging social cognition with neighboring fields.
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Do people behave differently when they are lying compared with when they are telling the truth? The combined results of 1,338 estimates of 158 cues to deception are reported. Results show that in some ways, liars are less forthcoming than truth tellers, and they tell less compelling tales. They also make a more negative impression and are more tense. Their stories include fewer ordinary imperfections and unusual contents. However, many behaviors showed no discernible links, or only weak links, to deceit. Cues to deception were more pronounced when people were motivated to succeed, especially when the motivations were identity relevant rather than monetary or material. Cues to deception were also stronger when lies were about transgressions.
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Past studies of strategic thinking have shown that the encoding of the message information becomes more complex under distrust. Receivers process the information as if they are trying to protect themselves from being misled by testing alternative potential interpretations. The present study investigates the possibility that when people are mistrustful they spontaneously activate associations that are incongruent with the given message. Findings from 3 experiments suggest that, even when the distrust is unrelated in any meaningful way to the message and even when receivers are unable to prepare a strategic response, the cognitive system reacts to distrust by automatically inducing the consideration of incongruent associations--it seems designed to ask, "and what if the information were false?" The theoretical implications of the results for theories of social perception and persuasion are discussed.
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Grounded cognition rejects traditional views that cognition is computation on amodal symbols in a modular system, independent of the brain's modal systems for perception, action, and introspection. Instead, grounded cognition proposes that modal simulations, bodily states, and situated action underlie cognition. Accumulating behavioral and neural evidence supporting this view is reviewed from research on perception, memory, knowledge, language, thought, social cognition, and development. Theories of grounded cognition are also reviewed, as are origins of the area and common misperceptions of it. Theoretical, empirical, and methodological issues are raised whose future treatment is likely to affect the growth and impact of grounded cognition.
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The now-classic Metaphors We Live By changed our understanding of metaphor and its role in language and the mind. Metaphor, the authors explain, is a fundamental mechanism of mind, one that allows us to use what we know about our physical and social experience to provide understanding of countless other subjects. Because such metaphors structure our most basic understandings of our experience, they are "metaphors we live by"--metaphors that can shape our perceptions and actions without our ever noticing them. In this updated edition of Lakoff and Johnson's influential book, the authors supply an afterword surveying how their theory of metaphor has developed within the cognitive sciences to become central to the contemporary understanding of how we think and how we express our thoughts in language.
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Participants evaluated a book as more important when it weighed heavily in their hands (due to a concealed weight), but only when they had substantive knowledge about the book. Those who had read a synopsis (Study 1), had read the book (Study 2) and knew details about its plot (Study 3) were influenced by its weight, whereas those unfamiliar with the book were not. This contradicts the widely shared assumption that metaphorically related perceptual inputs serve as heuristic cues that people primarily use in the absence of more diagnostic information. Instead, perceptual inputs may increase the accessibility of metaphorically congruent knowledge or may suggest an initial hypothesis that is only endorsed when supporting information is accessible.
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Cognitive Illusions investigates a wide range of fascinating psychological effects in the way we think, judge and remember in our every day lives. At the beginning of each chapter, leading researchers in the field introduce the background to phenomena such as; illusions of control, overconfidence and hindsight bias. This is followed by an explanation of the experimental context in which they can be investigated and a theoretical discussion which draws conclusions about the wider implications of these fallacy and bias effects. Written with researchers and instructors in mind, this tightly edited reader-friendly text provides both an overview of research in the area and many lively pedagogic features such as chapter summaries, further reading lists and experiment suggestions.
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This investigation examines the extent to which intelligent young adults seek (i) confirming evidence alone (enumerative induction) or (ii) confirming and discontinuing evidence (eliminative induction), in order to draw conclusions in a simple conceptual task. The experiment is designed so that use of confirming evidence alone will almost certainly lead to erroneous conclusions because (i) the correct concept is entailed by many more obvious ones, and (ii) the universe of possible instances (numbers) is infinite. Six out of 29 subjects reached the correct conclusion without previous incorrect ones, 13 reached one incorrect conclusion, nine reached two or more incorrect conclusions, and one reached no conclusion. The results showed that those subjects, who reached two or more incorrect conclusions, were unable, or unwilling to test their hypotheses. The implications are discussed in relation to scientific thinking.
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When asked, "How many animals of each kind did Moses take on the Ark?" most people respond "Two" despite knowing that Noah rather than Moses was the biblical actor. Two experiments tested the role of processing fluency in the detection of such semantic distortions by presenting questions in an easy or difficult to read print font. As predicted, low processing fluency facilitated detection of the misleading nature of the question and reduced the proportion of erroneous answers. However, low processing fluency also reduced the proportion of correct answers in response to an undistorted question. In both cases, participants were less likely to rely on their spontaneous association when the font was difficult to read, resulting in improved performance on distorted and impaired performance on undistorted questions. We propose that fluency experiences influence processing style.
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Explored how individuals cope with unfocused suspicion in situations where they are about to receive information from several sources, and they suspect that some of it is invalid, but they cannot reliably distinguish the invalid from the valid information during encoding. Four experiments were conducted to provide details about the nature of the preparatory activity initiated by suspicion. Results of Exps 1 and 2 (144 undergraduates) show that when Ss who anticipated having to judge others suspected that some of the information they were about to receive would be invalid, they elaborated on it more than when they did not have suspicions. Results of Exp 3 (48 undergraduates) indicate that an increase in elaborative coding did not occur when receivers had not anticipated judging others. Exp 4 (80 undergraduates) shows that the increase in elaboration occurs under a multiple interpretive schemata. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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This research examined why suspicion of ulterior motives leads perceivers to avoid the correspondence bias in the assigned-essay paradigm, in contrast to information about situational constraint. Five experiments offer converging evidence that suspicion triggers active, sophisticated attributional thinking. These studies examined participants' spontaneous thoughts and attributional analyses in the context of high-constraint or ulterior-motives conditions. The studies (a) suggest that high-constraint information and ulterior-motive information have divergent effects on perceivers early in the inference process, (b) demonstrate the correspondence bias in instances in which demand characteristics are minimized, and (c) show that the effects of suspicion can endure across targets and contexts. The implications of these results for current models of the correspondence bias and the dispositional inference process, and suggestions for a revised model, are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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focuses on 2 central questions regarding the dynamics of trust in hierarchical relationships / 1st, what are the antecedents or determinants of trust in such relationships / 2nd, why does trust sometimes fail / address these important and unresolved questions by exploring how trust-related cognitions are influenced by hierarchical social structures / specifically . . . show how organizational actors' structural position or location in a hierarchical relationship affects the processing of trust-related information / demonstrate that location is correlated with systematic and predictable asymmetries in how individuals construe trust in their relationships to advance these claims, it will prove useful to characterize people in organizations as "intuitive auditors" / a primary task of the intuitive auditor is to monitor the ongoing stream of interactions and exchanges that constitute, quite literally, the give-and-take of a hierarchical relationship, and which provide, in turn, the raw data from which inferences about trust and distrust are forged / because of the vulnerabilities and uncertainties they confront, I argue, individuals tend to be vigilant and ruminative auditors, ever attentive to evidence that their trust in the other party is either firmly set on solid ground or built as a house of cards on shifting sand (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Article
We assume that a state of distrust is the mental system’s signal that the environment is not normal—things may not be as they appear. Hence, individuals sense they should be on guard. In particular, they are likely to avoid routine strategies, ones proven to be optimal and regularly used in normal environments, because these strategies are easily anticipated by whoever may be seeking to deceive them. Conversely, a state of trust is associated with a feeling of safety. The environment is as it normally is and things really are as they appear to be. Thus, individuals see no reason to refrain from doing what they routinely do. Accordingly, we hypothesize that figuring out a new situation depends on the type of environment and the actor’s state of mind: in normal environments, where routine strategies are optimal, individuals who trust should outperform those who distrust; however, in unusual environments, where non-routine strategies are optimal, individuals who distrust should outperform those who trust. This paper reports three experiments that manipulate distrust via orienting tasks that participants perform prior to attempting to predict a series of events (Experiments 1 and 2) or solve matchstick arithmetic problems (Experiment 3). Performance success depends on discovering and implementing an appropriate rule. We found that, as predicted, the manipulation of distrust sensitized participants to the existence of non-routine contingencies, that is, contingencies that were not expected.
Article
How are the meanings of individual words combined to form a more global description of meaning? This paper describes a phenomenon which sheds some light on one aspects of this process. Consider the following question: How many animals of each kind did Moses take on the Ark? Most people answer “two” even though they know quite well that it was Noah and not Moses who sailed the Ark. This illusion occurs even when time pressure is eliminated and subjects are told that questions may be “wrong” and given an example of a question with an inconsistent name in it. Two explanations of this illusion—that people are skipping over the name or that the focus of the question is leading them astry—are eliminated. Results indicate that it is important that the inconsistent name share semantic featuers with the correct name. An explanation of the illusion is developed.
Article
The now-classic Metaphors We Live By changed our understanding of metaphor and its role in language and the mind. Metaphor, the authors explain, is a fundamental mechanism of mind, one that allows us to use what we know about our physical and social experience to provide understanding of countless other subjects. Because such metaphors structure our most basic understandings of our experience, they are "metaphors we live by"—metaphors that can shape our perceptions and actions without our ever noticing them. In this updated edition of Lakoff and Johnson's influential book, the authors supply an afterword surveying how their theory of metaphor has developed within the cognitive sciences to become central to the contemporary understanding of how we think and how we express our thoughts in language.
Article
"Warmth" is the most powerful personality trait in social judgment, and attachment theorists have stressed the importance of warm physical contact with caregivers during infancy for healthy relationships in adulthood. Intriguingly, recent research in humans points to the involvement of the insula in the processing of both physical temperature and interpersonal warmth (trust) information. Accordingly, we hypothesized that experiences of physical warmth (or coldness) would increase feelings of interpersonal warmth (or coldness), without the person's awareness of this influence. In study 1, participants who briefly held a cup of hot (versus iced) coffee judged a target person as having a "warmer" personality (generous, caring); in study 2, participants holding a hot (versus cold) therapeutic pad were more likely to choose a gift for a friend instead of for themselves.
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The authors examine the practice of dichotomization of quantitative measures, wherein relationships among variables are examined after 1 or more variables have been converted to dichotomous variables by splitting the sample at some point on the scale(s) of measurement. A common form of dichotomization is the median split, where the independent variable is split at the median to form high and low groups, which are then compared with respect to their means on the dependent variable. The consequences of dichotomization for measurement and statistical analyses are illustrated and discussed. The use of dichotomization in practice is described, and justifications that are offered for such usage are examined. The authors present the case that dichotomization is rarely defensible and often will yield misleading results.
Article
Scholarly interest in the study of trust and distrust in organizations has grown dramatically over the past five years. This interest has been fueled, at least in part, by accumulating evidence that trust has a number of important benefits for organizations and their members. A primary aim of this review is to assess the state of this rapidly growing literature. The review examines recent progress in conceptualizing trust and distrust in organizational theory, and also summarizes evidence regarding the myriad benefits of trust within organizational systems. The review also describes different forms of trust found in organizations, and the antecedent conditions that produce them. Although the benefits of trust are well-documented, creating and sustaining trust is often difficult. Accordingly, the chapter concludes by examining some of the psychological, social, and institutional barriers to the production of trust.
Article
Current conceptualizations of psychological distance (e.g., construal-level theory) refer to the degree of overlap between the self and some other person, place, or point in time. We propose a complementary view in which perceptual and motor representations of physical distance influence people's thoughts and feelings without reference to the self, extending research and theory on the effects of distance into domains where construal-level theory is silent. Across four experiments, participants were primed with either spatial closeness or spatial distance by plotting an assigned set of points on a Cartesian coordinate plane. Compared with the closeness prime, the distance prime produced greater enjoyment of media depicting embarrassment (Study 1), less emotional distress from violent media (Study 2), lower estimates of the number of calories in unhealthy food (Study 3), and weaker reports of emotional attachments to family members and hometowns (Study 4). These results support a broader conceptualization of distance-mediated effects on judgment and affect.
The power of metaphor: Examining its influence on social life
  • S W S Lee
  • N Schwarz
Lee, S. W. S., & Schwarz, N. (2014). Metaphors in judgment and decision making. In M. J. Landau, M. D. Robinson, & B. P. Meier (Eds.), The power of metaphor: Examining its influence on social life (pp. 85-108). Washington, DC: APA.
Sensorial perception as a source domain: A cross-linguistic study
  • C Soriano
  • J Valenzuela
Soriano, C., & Valenzuela, J. (2008, May 31). Sensorial perception as a source domain: A cross-linguistic study. Paper presented at the Seventh International Conference on Researching and Applying Metaphor (RaAM 7), Caceres, Spain.