Why Can Only 24% Solve Bayesian Reasoning Problems in Natural Frequencies: Frequency Phobia in Spite of Probability Blindness

Frontiers in Psychology 9:375246 (2018)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

For more than 20 years, research has proven the beneficial effect of natural frequencies when it comes to solving Bayesian reasoning tasks (Gigerenzer & Hoffrage, 1995). In a recent meta-analysis, McDowell & Jacobs (2017) showed that presenting a task in natural frequency format increases performance rates to 24% compared to only 4% when the same task is presented in probability format. Nevertheless, on average three quarters of participants in their meta-analysis failed to obtain the correct solution for such a task in frequency format. In this paper, we present an empirical study on what participants typically do wrong when confronted with natural frequencies. We found that many of them did not actually use natural frequencies for their calculations, but translated them back into complicated probabilities instead. This switch from the intuitive presentation format to a less intuitive calculation format will be discussed within the framework of psychological theories (e.g., the Einstellung effect).

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 89,654

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Mechanistic probability.Marshall Abrams - 2012 - Synthese 187 (2):343-375.
Bayesian probability.Patrick Maher - 2010 - Synthese 172 (1):119 - 127.
Objective Probabilities in Number Theory.J. Ellenberg & E. Sober - 2011 - Philosophia Mathematica 19 (3):308-322.
Ramsey and the measurement of belief.Richard Bradley - 2001 - In David Corfield & Jon Williamson (eds.), Foundations of Bayesianism.
Scientific reasoning: the Bayesian approach.Peter Urbach & Colin Howson - 1993 - Chicago: Open Court. Edited by Peter Urbach.
What is probability and why does it matter.Zvonimir Šikić - 2014 - European Journal of Analytic Philosophy 10 (1):21-43.
Probability and Relative Frequency.Michael Drieschner - 2016 - Foundations of Physics 46 (1):28-43.
Probability, Objectivity, and Induction.Arnold Baise - 2013 - Journal of Ayn Rand Studies 13 (2):81-95.

Analytics

Added to PP
2018-10-14

Downloads
25 (#536,466)

6 months
6 (#200,146)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?