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The Role of Strength of Opinion and Domain of Judgment in the False Consensus Effect

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Description: The False Consensus Effect (FCE) is an egocentric bias in estimating population-wide trends. In this thesis, I assessed differences in FCE as a function of strength of personal opinion and domain of judgment. First, participants were asked to estimate the percentage of people who would agree about certain facts, personal preferences, and moral issues. Next, participants indicated their own level of agreement on each statement. Results showed that participants' estimates of population agreement were higher the more they personally agreed with the statement. This influence of opinion strength on the perceived population agreement was largest for factual beliefs, intermediate for moral judgments, and smallest for personal preferences. Thus, this study indicates that people estimate consensus differently depending on the domain of judgment.
Language: English
Format: Degree Work