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Do you see an effect here? Some data on correlation of cognitive reflection with political outlooks

It couldn't last. The "asymmetry thesis" is again sucking me into the vortex....

John Jost included one of my papers in his meta-analysis of research on conservatives' cognitive style, including cognitive reflection.  But I have many many datasets with these data in them, and I would have been happy to furnish the essential details with him had he asked me.

Anyway, here are some more findings that support the conclusion that the relationship between CRT scores and ideology is only trivially different from zero:

If one gets a meaningful effect using a convenience sample, then the sample probably is not valid for trying to draw population-level inferences.

Gives me a chance to renew the question, too, about whether probability density distributions of the sort generated by ggplot are a good way to present this sort of info. 

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Reader Comments (6)

For three of the four samples it looks as though there might be a relationship between getting 3 out of 3 CRT questions correct and political outlook. Am I seeing things? If not, any thoughts on this?

June 28, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterAnon

@Anon--your eyes are telling you the truth. This is a yuuuuuuuuuuuuge problem w/ ggplot's pretty overlapping density distributions. They give the impression that there are equal number of subjects at each level of the CRT. There isn't: only 7% or so of the sample gets 3 right; 62% get zero.

June 28, 2017 | Registered CommenterDan Kahan

Good point. Thanks for clearing that up!

June 28, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterAnon


Looking only at the r's and p's, I see what you mean. As for the pdds, I agree they're very misleading here due to apparently being normalized.

On the topic itself:
Having gone from belief in symmetry to belief in asymmetry (Haidt, Jost, etc) and (somewhat) back (due to your persistent browbeating), I'm a confused mess. I still suspect that what contributes to libs vs. cons being susceptible to CC may be distinct, and hence susceptible to distinct remediation.

June 28, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

the business of science communication link drop:

Dan - if you really want to help the science curious, puhleeeeez help find a way to break the Elsevier cartel!

June 28, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan


Outside observers tend to fall into a sort of stunned disbelief when describing this setup.


Certainly true here. Those numbers are staggering.

June 29, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

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