Variables that increase deliberative processing (e.g., instructions urging participants to process information very carefully--Pryor, 1986) have been found to attenuate illusory correlations. The same is true for variables that decrease deliberative processing (e.g., the induction of moods such as happiness and sadness--Stroessner, Hamilton, & Mackie, 1992).
The ACS was administered to participants in this study, and we predicted that illusory correlations would be enhanced and most in evidence among those with moderate (relative to other participants) levels of AC.
To test the hypothesized relationship between AC and distinctiveness-based illusory correlations (i.e., an inverted-U pattern), a hierarchical regression analysis testing the linear and quadratic effects of AC on memory for minority group negative behaviors was conducted.
Analyses using group ratings as indicators of distinctiveness-based illusory correlations failed to support the hypothesized nonlinear relationship with AC (for the [R.sup.2] increments for the quadratic term, all three p-values were greater than .60).
A main objective of this research was to examine the relationship between Attributional Complexity (AC) and the formation of illusory correlations. More generally, the purpose was to test Stroessner and Plaks's (2001) prediction that illusory correlations can vary as a function of how deliberatively and thoroughly social information is processed.
The formation of stereotypic beliefs: Further evidence for distinctiveness-based illusory correlations. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 48, pp.
Hamilton & Gifford (1976; Study 1) developed the now familiar paradigm to demonstrate the illusory correlation effect in social perception.
However, a number of studies have identified factors that can weaken the distinctiveness-based illusory correlation effect (Schaller & Maass, 1989; Spears, van der Pligt & Eiser, 1985), or have shown that illusory correlation effects can occur without statistical infrequency of a particular category (Berndsen, Spears & van der Pligt, 1996a; Spears, van der Pligt & Eiser, 1986).
According to Smith (1991) and Fiedler (1991; see also Fiedler, Russer & Gramm, 1993), the illusory correlation phenomenon is a result of memory biases.
In contrast to these explanations based on biased information processing, McGarty, Haslam, Turner & Oakes (1993) proposed that illusory correlation resulted from attempts to differentiate meaningfully between stimulus groups.
In order to accentuate differences between group A and B in the illusory correlation task, participants need to perceive some contrast or difference between the two groups (i.e.
The purpose of the present study is to investigate McGarty et al.'s proposal that illusory correlation is at least partly the product of a process based on intergroup differentiation by investigating features of the illusory correlation task that might contribute to such differentiation.