Under conditions of uncertainty, people tend to make systematic and predictable errors in their judgements of probability. A number of studies suggest this is especially true of those who believe in the existence of paranormal phenomena, particularly extrasensory perception. The first half of this article outlines how a general misunderstanding of probability can explain why so many people report spontaneous experiences of extrasensory perception (ESP). The second half then reviews empirical evidence for the claim that paranormal believers are more prone to biases in probabilistic reasoning, with particular emphasis placed on believers’ propensity for misjudging co-occurring or ‘conjunctive’ events. Theoretical implications are also discussed.
|Journal||Anomaly: A Journal of Research into the Paranormal|
|Publication status||Published - Nov 2011|