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Hindsight: Biased Judgments of Past Events After the Outcomes Are Known

Hindsight: Biased Judgments of Past Events After the Outcomes Are Known The hindsight bias is the tendency for people with outcome knowledge to believe falsely thatthey would have predicted the reported outcome of an event. This article reviews empiricalresearch relevant to hindsight phenomena. The influence of outcome knowledge, termedcreeping determinism, was initially hypothesized to result from the immediateand automatic integration of the outcome into a person's knowledge of an event. Later researchhas identified at least 4 plausible, general strategies for responding to hindsight questions.These explanations postulate that outcome information affects the selection of evidence to makea judgment, the evidence evaluation, the manner in which evidence is integrated, or theresponse generation process. It is also likely, in some situations, that a combination of 2 ormore of these mechanisms produce the observed hindsight effects. We provide an interpretationof the creeping determinism hypothesis in terms of inferences made to reevaluate case-specificevidence once the relevant outcome is known and conclude that it is the most common mechanismunderlying observed hindsight effects. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Psychological Bulletin American Psychological Association

Hindsight: Biased Judgments of Past Events After the Outcomes Are Known

Psychological Bulletin , Volume 107 (3): 17 – May 1, 1990

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References (118)

Publisher
American Psychological Association
Copyright
Copyright © 1990 American Psychological Association
ISSN
0033-2909
eISSN
1939-1455
DOI
10.1037/0033-2909.107.3.311
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The hindsight bias is the tendency for people with outcome knowledge to believe falsely thatthey would have predicted the reported outcome of an event. This article reviews empiricalresearch relevant to hindsight phenomena. The influence of outcome knowledge, termedcreeping determinism, was initially hypothesized to result from the immediateand automatic integration of the outcome into a person's knowledge of an event. Later researchhas identified at least 4 plausible, general strategies for responding to hindsight questions.These explanations postulate that outcome information affects the selection of evidence to makea judgment, the evidence evaluation, the manner in which evidence is integrated, or theresponse generation process. It is also likely, in some situations, that a combination of 2 ormore of these mechanisms produce the observed hindsight effects. We provide an interpretationof the creeping determinism hypothesis in terms of inferences made to reevaluate case-specificevidence once the relevant outcome is known and conclude that it is the most common mechanismunderlying observed hindsight effects.

Journal

Psychological BulletinAmerican Psychological Association

Published: May 1, 1990

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