An "integrated" theory of belief revision is presented which proposes that belief perseverance (the contrast effect) is an increasing (decreasing) function of confidence in beliefs.
The theory proposes, therefore, that belief perseverance (the contrast effect) is an increasing (decreasing) function of confidence in beliefs.
Thus, in addition to expanding the theoretical literature on order effects, this study provides empirical evidence on the degree to which belief perseverance (and thus primacy) might be a problem in audit settings by manipulating both task experience and the amount of information in an experiment designed to test the theory's predictions.
The following section defines order effects and describes the theories of belief perseverance and the contrast effect.
The theory of belief perseverance predicts primacy, while the contrast-effect theory predicts recency.
A related explanation for belief perseverance is that certain motivational and cognitive factors may trigger the use of confirmatory processes (see Church 1990 for a comprehensive review of this literature).
Although the two theories ("change-in-meaning" and "discounting") were proposed as distinct explanations for primacy, Nisbett and Ross (1980) point out that both are consistent with the theory of belief perseverance.
The belief perseverance bias refers to jurors' tendency, once they have adopted a trial story, to cling to it even in the face of conflicting or discrediting evidence.
Thus, we know that jurors construct a story that confirms their prior beliefs, the confirmation bias, and that the story perseveres even in the wake of inconsistent evidence, the belief perseverance bias.
Combining the confirmation bias and the belief perseverance bias shows that jurors adopt a trial story early that confirms their beliefs and that this story endures after further evidence is introduced.
We can combine confirmation, belief perseverance, and availability bias in analyzing this story.
Then, we will be using confirmation bias, belief perseverance bias, and availability bias to our advantage.