Biases in children's group impression formation by Johnston

By Johnston

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Furthermore, the strength of the illusory correlations increased with attitude extremity for the minority-congruent participants, but decreased with attitude extremity for majoritycongruent participants. Thus, self-relevance of the attitude statements made statements 22 congruent with participants’ own attitudes more salient and strengthened the illusory correlation for minority-congruent attitude holders. For majority-congruent attitude holders, the competing salience of the majority group’s attitude position and the attitudeincongruent minority position reduced the illusory correlation effect, particularly for participants who held strong majority-congruent attitudes.

They then completed a group attribution task in which they were shown the drawing of the behaviors with the group member omitted, and children were asked to determine which group had performed the behavior by sorting the drawings into boxes labeled Firs and Pines. Finally, children were given two stacks of cards, with each card representing a group member in the Firs and Pines groups. The children estimated the frequency of occurrence for negative behaviors in each group by removing the number of cards corresponding to the number of group members who performed positive and negative behaviors.

Spears et al. (1985) found that, as expected, minority-congruent attitude holders showed stronger illusory correlation effects than majority-congruent attitude holders. Furthermore, the strength of the illusory correlations increased with attitude extremity for the minority-congruent participants, but decreased with attitude extremity for majoritycongruent participants. Thus, self-relevance of the attitude statements made statements 22 congruent with participants’ own attitudes more salient and strengthened the illusory correlation for minority-congruent attitude holders.

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