A mile in moccasins: How situational experience diminishes dispositionism in social inference

Emily Balcetis, David A. Dunning

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In four studies, this article investigates the impact of situational experience on social inference. Participants without firsthand experience of a situation made more extreme and erroneous inferences about the personalities of people behaving in that situation than did participants with firsthand experience. Firsthand experience, thus, appears to diminish dispositionism in social inference because it informs people about the situational constraints that guide behavior. Across all studies, participants also displayed holier-than-thou biases, overpredicting how generously they would act relative to predictions about their peers and also relative to how they actually acted when the situation came.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)102-114
Number of pages13
JournalPersonality and Social Psychology Bulletin
Volume34
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2008

Keywords

  • Correspondence bias
  • Dispositionism
  • Self-assessment
  • Self-enhancement

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology

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