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      Refinement of Outcome Bias Measurement in the Parental Decision-Making Context


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          The aim of this study was twofold: one was to test the impact of the involvement on the parental outcome bias, and the second was to refine the measurement of outcome bias, normally reported as the difference between evaluations of a single decision, with different outcomes assigned to it. We introduced the evaluation of a decision without an outcome, to induce theoretically normative evaluation, unbiased by outcome, from which the evaluation shift could be calculated in either direction. To test this refinement in the parental decision-making context, we produced childcare dilemmas with varying levels of complexity, since the rise of complexity induces stronger bias. Complexity was determined by the particular combination of two factors: parental involvement in a decision - the amount of motivation, interest and drive evoked by it – and whether the decision was health-related or not. We presented parents with the decisions for evaluation, followed by a positive and a negative outcome, and without an outcome. The results confirm the interaction between involvement and domain on decision evaluation. Highly involving decisions yielded weaker outcome bias than low-involvement decisions in both health and non-health domain. Results also confirm the validity of the proposed way of measuring OB, revealing that in some situations positive outcomes skew evaluations more than negative outcomes. Also, a highly-involving dilemma followed by negative outcome did not produce significantly different evaluation compared to evaluation of a decision without outcome. Thus, adding a neutral position rendered OB measurement more precise and our involvement-related insights more nuanced.

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          Most cited references31

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              Homo heuristicus: why biased minds make better inferences.

              Heuristics are efficient cognitive processes that ignore information. In contrast to the widely held view that less processing reduces accuracy, the study of heuristics shows that less information, computation, and time can in fact improve accuracy. We review the major progress made so far: (a) the discovery of less-is-more effects; (b) the study of the ecological rationality of heuristics, which examines in which environments a given strategy succeeds or fails, and why; (c) an advancement from vague labels to computational models of heuristics; (d) the development of a systematic theory of heuristics that identifies their building blocks and the evolved capacities they exploit, and views the cognitive system as relying on an "adaptive toolbox;" and (e) the development of an empirical methodology that accounts for individual differences, conducts competitive tests, and has provided evidence for people's adaptive use of heuristics. Homo heuristicus has a biased mind and ignores part of the available information, yet a biased mind can handle uncertainty more efficiently and robustly than an unbiased mind relying on more resource-intensive and general-purpose processing strategies. Copyright © 2009 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.

                Author and article information

                Eur J Psychol
                Europe's Journal of Psychology
                Eur. J. Psychol.
                February 2019
                28 February 2019
                : 15
                : 1
                : 41-58
                [a ]Laboratory for Experimental Psychology, Department of Psychology, Faculty of Philosophy, University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia
                [2]University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia
                Author notes
                [* ]Čika Ljubina 18-20, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia. kdamnjan@ 123456f.bg.ac.rs

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) 4.0 License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

                : 04 July 2018
                : 22 January 2019
                Self URI (journal-page): https://journals.psychopen.eu/
                Research Reports

                involvement,neutral position evaluation,health decisions,outcome bias,decision domain,parents


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