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Q J Exp Psychol (Hove). 2018 Sep;71(9):1898-1910. doi: 10.1080/17470218.2017.1363792. Epub 2018 Jan 1.

Poor metacognitive awareness of belief change.

Author information

1
Psychology Department, Grand Valley State University, Allendale, MI, USA.

Abstract

When people change beliefs as a result of reading a text, are they aware of these changes? This question was examined for beliefs about spanking as an effective means of discipline. In two experiments, subjects reported beliefs about spanking effectiveness during a prescreening session. In a subsequent experimental session, subjects read a one-sided text that advocated a belief consistent or inconsistent position on the topic. After reading, subjects reported their current beliefs and attempted to recollect their initial beliefs. Subjects reading a belief inconsistent text were more likely to change their beliefs than those who read a belief consistent text. Recollections of initial beliefs tended to be biased in the direction of subjects' current beliefs. In addition, the relationship between the belief consistency of the text read and accuracy of belief recollections was mediated by belief change. This belief memory bias was independent of on-line text processing and comprehension measures, and indicates poor metacognitive awareness of belief change.

KEYWORDS:

Beliefs; belief change; comprehension; metacognition; recollection

PMID:
28893150
DOI:
10.1080/17470218.2017.1363792
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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