Mnemonic accessibility affects statement believability: The effect of listening to others selectively practicing beliefs

Madalina Vlasceanu, Alin I. Coman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Belief endorsement is rarely a fully deliberative process. Oftentimes, one's beliefs are influenced by superficial characteristics of the belief evaluation experience. Here, we show that by manipulating the mnemonic accessibility of particular beliefs we can alter their believability. We use a well-established socio-cognitive paradigm (i.e., the social version of the selective practice paradigm) to increase the mnemonic accessibility of some beliefs and induce forgetting in others. We find that listening to a speaker selectively practicing beliefs results in changes in believability. Beliefs that are mentioned become mnemonically accessible and exhibit an increase in believability, while beliefs that are related to those mentioned exrience mnemonic suppression, which results in decreased believability. Importantly, the latter effect occurs regardless of whether the belief is scientifically accurate or inaccurate. Furthermore, beliefs that are endorsed with moderate-strength are particularly susceptible to mnemonically-induced believability changes. These findings, we argue, have the potential to guide interventions aimed at correcting misinformation in vulnerable communities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)238-245
Number of pages8
JournalCognition
Volume180
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Cognitive Neuroscience

Keywords

  • Belief endorsement
  • Belief rehearsal
  • Belief suppression
  • Misinformation
  • Rehearsal effect
  • Retrieval induced forgetting

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Mnemonic accessibility affects statement believability: The effect of listening to others selectively practicing beliefs'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this