Activity: Using Zodiac-based Personality Descriptions to Teach about Biases in Thinking

Students are given a list of personality descriptions based on the 12 signs of the zodiac and have to choose which one best describes them. We then discuss how these personality descriptions are written vague enough to apply to many people. This activity is similar to the classic Forer effect (Forer, 1949). Forer used generalized personality descriptions supposedly to obtained from a personality test, whereas this activity uses personality descriptions tied to zodiac signs. Click here for a link to the assignment.

Forer, B. R. (1949). The fallacy of personal validation: A classroom demonstration of gullibility. The Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, 44(1), 118-123.

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