Article | Psychological Science | February 2013

Daily Horizons: Evidence of Narrow Bracketing in Judgments from 9,000 MBA Admission Interviews

by U. Simonsohn and F. Gino

Abstract

Many professionals, from auditors and lawyers, to clinical psychologists and journal editors, divide a continuous flow of judgments into subsets. College admissions interviewers, for instance, evaluate but a handful of applicants a day. We conjectured that in such situations, individuals engage in narrow bracketing, assessing each subset in isolation, and as a consequence avoid deviating much—for any given subset—from the expected overall distribution of judgments. For instance, an interviewer who has already highly recommended three applicants on a given day may be reluctant to do so for a fourth applicant. Data from over 9,000 MBA interviews supported this prediction. Auxiliary analyses suggest that contrast effects and non-random scheduling of interviews are unlikely alternative explanations.

Keywords: Judgments; Forecasting and Prediction; Research;

Citation:

Simonsohn, U., and F. Gino. "Daily Horizons: Evidence of Narrow Bracketing in Judgments from 9,000 MBA Admission Interviews." Psychological Science 24, no. 2 (February 2013): 219–224.