Illusory Superiority Essay

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“ILLUSORY SUPERIORITY” OR “CULTURAL DIVISION IN AMERICA” By Sean Flaherty Copyright © 2010 TABLE OF CONTENTS Page 1 - Title Page Page 2 - Table of Contents Pages 3-12 – Final Project Page 13 - Works Cited and Images Pages 14-15 - Appendix According to recent American psychological research studies, most people think they are superior to others in areas such as intelligence, performance, and the possession of desirable characteristics or personality traits. “Illusory Superiority” is a cognitive bias that causes them to overestimate their positive qualities, abilities, and underestimate their negative qualities relative to others in American Society. “Illusory superiority is often referred to as the Above Average Effect(Hoorens).” Other terms include superiority bias, leniency error, sense of relative superiority, the primus inter pares effect, and the Lake Wobegon Effect as stated in “Self- enhancement and Superiority Biases in Social Comparison” by Vera Hoorens. A common misconception is that, ‘can one predict how well they would perform in any situation.’ The reality is that they are generally pretty bad at estimating their competence and the difficulty of complicated tasks. For example, imagine one is very good at a particular game. Pick anything, like chess, a video game, or a card game, it doesn’t matter. One plays this game with friends all the time, and then always wins. Eventually, getting so good at it, one starts to think they could win a tournament. Going online, to find where the next
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