When is p=.90 preferred to p=.70? preference for definitive predictions by lay consumers of probability judgments

G. Keren, K.H. Teigen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)
2 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

What do people regard as an informative and valuable probability statement? This article reports four experiments that show participants to have a clear preference for more extreme and higher probabilities over less extreme and lower ones. This pattern emerged in Experiment 1, inwhich no context was provided, and was further explored in Experiment 2 within a positive and a negative context. The findings were further confirmed in Experiment 3, which employed a Bayesian framework with revisions of opinions. Finally, Experiment 4 showed how preference for high probabilities can lead people to prefer an overconfident to a more well-calibrated(accurate) forecaster. The results are interpreted as manifestations of a search for definitive predictions principle, which asserts that high probabilities are preferred to medium ones and often favored over the corresponding complementary low probabilities on the basis of their capacity to predict the occurrence of single outcomes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)191-202
JournalPsychonomic Bulletin and Review
Volume8
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2001

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