Ideological Differences in Anchoring and Adjustment During Social Inferences

Chadly Stern, Tessa V. West

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Recent research has demonstrated that conservatives perceive greater similarity to political ingroup members than do liberals. In two studies, we draw from a framework of “anchoring and adjustment” to understand why liberals and conservatives differ in their perceptions of ingroup similarity. Results indicate that when participants made judgments under time pressure, liberals and conservatives did not differ in assuming ingroup similarity. However, when participants were given sufficient time to make judgments, liberals assumed less similarity than conservatives did, suggesting that liberals adjusted their judgments to a greater extent than conservatives did (Studies 1 and 2). In examining an underlying motivational process, we found that when conservatives’ desire to affiliate with others was attenuated, they adjusted their initial judgments of ingroup similarity to a similar extent as liberals did (Study 2). We discuss implications for research on ideology and social judgment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1466-1479
Number of pages14
JournalPersonality and Social Psychology Bulletin
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1 2016


  • anchoring and adjustment
  • ideology
  • relational motives
  • social perception

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology


Dive into the research topics of 'Ideological Differences in Anchoring and Adjustment During Social Inferences'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this