Research Interests: Cognitive and social biases and their impact on judgments, preferences, decision making, and enjoyment.
My job market paper consists of two complementary research streams investigating the disparity between what we think we know about the world and what comes out in our communication. Specifically, I explore the role of explanations in calibrating self-insight as well as how people communicate “treasured” experiences to others.
Roeder, S. S. & Nelson, L. D. (2015). Folk Theories Are Corrupted By Cross-Domain Explanations. Under review at Psychological Science.
Research has demonstrated that people systematically overrate their knowledge, intelligence, and skills in various domains. Confronting people with evidence of their miscalibration, however, causes them to reassess these claims. For example, simply asking people to explain how a sewing machine works leads them to subsequently report understanding it less—a bias called the illusion of explanatory depth (Rozenblit & Keil, 2002). While previous work argues that this process is domain-bound, we demonstrate in several experiments that the bias to inflate subjective knowledge is attenuated not only by explanations of the focal item itself but also by explanations of other, entirely different things, implying the existence of a more parsimonious, domain-agnostic process for this bias.
Roeder, S. S. & Critcher, C. R. “You Just Had To Be There”: Why People Seem Underwhelmed by Treasured Experiences (in preparation).
People do not only reflect on their memories and experiences, they describe them to others. Although previous research has examined various factors that lead our memories to be distorted, there has been little research examining how we share those experiences with others. In two studies, we asked participants to share a recalled experience with someone else. More specifically, participants were asked to describe their experiences at a place that was treasured—one highly meaningful to the self—or one they identified as equally positive but not treasured. But in addition, participants were told they were communicating with someone who had or had not been to the place they described. Across two studies, coders found that people communicated their treasured experiences with less enthusiasm when talking to someone who had not (vs. had) been to the same place. The same pattern was not evident when describing merely positive experiences. A mechanistic study showed that this effect was explained by the seeming indescribability of treasured experiences. Discussion will focus on how treasured memories may reside in emotional rather than verbal narratives.
Job Market Paper
Mailing Address:545 Student Services #1900
Haas School of Business
University of California, Berkeley
Berkeley, CA 94720-1900
Scott S. Roeder
Ph.D. Marketing, 2016University of California, Berkeley
Dissertation Committee: Clayton R. Critcher (Chair), Leif D. Nelson, Don A. Moore, Iris Mauss
M.S. Marketing, 2012University of California, Berkeley
B.A. (Hons) Psychology, 2009
University of British Columbia
Moon, A.(*), Roeder, S.S.(*) (2014). A secondary replication attempt of stereotype susceptibility. Social Psychology, 45, 199-201.
(*) Equal First Authorship
Prior work suggests that awareness of stereotypes about a person’s in-group can affect a person’s behavior and performance when they complete a stereotype-relevant task, a phenomenon called stereotype susceptibility (Shih, Pittinsky, & Ambady, 1999). In a preregistered confirmatory design, we found that priming Asian women with social identities associated with math stereotypes did not influence their performance on a subsequent mathematics exam, and hypothesized moderators did not account for the effect. The conditions necessary to obtain the original results are not yet fully understood.
Moon, A.(*), Roeder, S. S.(*) (2014). The effect of positive stereotypes on performance: An open question (a response to Shih and Pittinsky). Social Psychology, 45(4), 337.
(*) Equal First Authorship
Shih, Pittinsky, and Ambady’s seminal positive stereotype paper (1999) is easily one of the most cited papers on stereotype susceptibility. We are delighted to have the opportunity to contribute to this literature and thank Shih and Pittinsky (hereafter referred to as S&P) for their response to our replication. We find it surprising that S&P strongly discarded our replication given that our studies taken together—their 1999 original paper and our secondary replication—largely overlap in terms of effect size (see Figure 1). There is remarkable consistency in the confidence intervals for the effect sizes of the referenced studies, a claim that is substantiated by examining the Cohen’s d estimates (Cohen’s d confidence interval for original study: [-.08, 1.40], for Gibson et al.: [.09, .97], and for Moon & Roeder: [-.22, .75]). Given such broad-ranging effect sizes (-.22 to 1.40), we remain agnostic as to whether an effect of stereotype susceptibility on math performance exists.