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Psychology Glossary

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Confirmation Bias



Confirmation Bias:

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Do you know anyone who identifies things that support some position or opinion they have but ignore information that contradicts it? If so, you know someone who is exhibiting the confirmation bias, which is a tendency for a person to search for information that confirms one's preconceptions.

For example, I know someone who says that all Republicans are only concerned with healing the upper class at the expense of those who are not wealthy. He likes to identify Republican politicians who try to pass, for example, tax laws that help the upper class, which confirms his position. However, when some Republican politician proposes a law that favors those in the lower socioeconomic class, he says that it is just a smoke screen -- that they know it will never pass and only do it to make themselves look like they care when they actually don't.