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Do people brace sensibly? [electronic resource] : Risk judgments, outcome importance, and risk prevalence /

by Dockery, Katharine

Abstract (Summary)
ABSTRACT: Previous research shows that people become pessimistic about impending bad news to "brace for the worst." The current study examined whether the commonality and importance of an event moderates bracing. Students learned about a billing error that would result in an unexpected bill for either 20% (rare event) or 80% (common event) of the students at their university. Students in the common event condition made higher personal risk estimates than did students in the rare event condition. Financially needy students also made higher risk estimates than did non-needy students. Comparing risk estimates to the base rates provided to participants revealed that students in the rare event condition were pessimistic about their risk of receiving a bill, with the financially needy students making the most pessimistic estimates. In contrast, students in the common event condition were optimistic about their risk, with non-needy students making the most optimistic estimates. The discussion explores several possible explanations for these findings.
Bibliographical Information:

Advisor:

School:University of Florida

School Location:USA - Florida

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:bracing pessimism risk

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