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Psychology, Barnum effect 2011

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Ruby Schmelzer

on 9 June 2011

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Transcript of Psychology, Barnum effect 2011

The Barnum Effect What is the Barnum effect? The Barnum effect is the term used to describe the tendency for individuals to accept general statements and believe that they are extremely accurate for them personally, even though they could apply to almost anybody. Main psychologists: Barnum and Forer The Forer Experiment In 1948 B. R. Forer gave a personality test
to each of his students. Forer gave the same
results to eveyone in the class. Most people
said that the test described them accuratly. Other Barnum Tests.
Similar experiments have been conducted and most of them have resulted in all most identical outcomes. Michel Gauquelin's experiment reinforced the results found in Forer's test that astrology relies heavily on the Barnum effect. How does the Barnum effect work? Barnum statements are generally worded so there is almost nothing to disagree with.
Fortune cookies and psychic readings are about the furture and therefore offer a sense of control over the unknown.
Often people derive their own meaning from the statement.
Barnum statements are usually positive. What are the advantages or disadvantages of a Barnum statement?
Being able to derive meaning from vague statements can be seen as a sign of creativity.
It suggests an active mind.
The skills used in finding meaning in Barnum satements are the same skills that are needed to understand our daily lives.
You may interpret the statement wrong.
In cases dealing with fortunes for example psychic readings you can be given wrong information.
You may choose to accept a psychic reading and not a proper treatment from a doctor.
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