Perceived costs of omission vs. commission errors play a role in trait inferences.

Fredrik Björklund, M J Ferguson, Y Trope

Forskningsoutput: KonferensbidragKonferensabstractPeer review

StatusPublished - 2002
Externt publiceradJa
Evenemang13th General Meeting of the European Association of Experimental Social Psychology (EAESP) - San Sebastian, Spanien
Varaktighet: 2002 juni 262002 juni 29


Konferens13th General Meeting of the European Association of Experimental Social Psychology (EAESP)
OrtSan Sebastian

Bibliografisk information

Abstract: Trope & Liberman’s (1996) social hypothesis testing model was applied to trait inferences. Previous research in the field has focused on people’s general knowledge about personality traits, e.g. the implicational schemata (Reeder, 1993) that may guide inferences so that competent behaviors appear more diagnostic than incompetent behaviors. However, our model takes a motivational approach and introduces error costs - the perceived costs of making an error of omission or an error of commission. It is assumed that the magnitude of the two error costs reflect a person’s accuracy motivation for a particular judgment. We are less willing to make a trait inference when a mistaken judgment would potentially have a large cost to us than when the potential cost is low. Interestingly, error costs may be asymmetric. If the cost of concluding that a person is not competent when he or she is actually is competent (omission) looms larger than the cost of concluding that the person is competent when he or she actually is not (commission) we may be more likely to infer competence than incompetence from a single behavior. This is exactly what we found in a computerized study presenting 47 NYU students with trait terms and correspondent behaviors that were rated for error costs, priors, likelihood of making a trait correspondent conclusion etc.

Ämnesklassifikation (UKÄ)

  • Psykologi

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