This exists when someone thinks in a way that can be regarded as irrational or that goes against good judgement. Cognitive biases are usually a result of either mental shortcuts or heuristics (i.e. techniques that we use to help us make decisions more quickly) or ‘motivational’ explanations. There are numerous examples of cognitive bias which have been investigated by behavioural scientists.

Some common ones are summarised below:

Anchoring effect: relying too heavily on an irrelevant piece of information to help us make a decision

Availability heuristic: overestimating the likelihood of something happening because a similar event has either happened recently or because we feel very emotional about a previous similar event
Confirmation bias: the tendency for humans to only remember information that supports their own views
Curse of knowledge: the difficulty that well-informed people have in understanding how lesser-informed people might think
Endowment effect: the phenomenon in which people often demand a greater amount of compensation/money to give up something that they have than they would be willing to pay for it in the first place
Hindsight bias:the tendency to see events in the past as having been predictable
IKEA effect: a scenario in which people place an overly-high value on an object that they have either fully or partially assembled themselves, regardless of the quality of the outcome
Overconfidence effect: the phenomenon in which humans are often over-confident in their answers to questions
Optimism bias - People tend to be overly confident about the outcome of planned actions and decisions
Planning fallacy: the tendency to (significantly!) underestimate how long it will take to complete a task
Sunk cost bias: a tendency to continue a behaviour as result of previously invested resources (time, money or effort) e.g. people may order a large meal and continue to eat even though marginal utility is zero (or perhaps negative!)
Zero-risk bias:the human preference for reducing an already-small risk to zero, rather than reducing a high risk by a large amount

Exam Technique

Worked examples of best-practice exam technique and supporting activities designed to build those techniques.

  • Added to your Shopping Cart!

  • Topic Teaching Resources

    Individual teaching resources for delivering specific topics, including teaching instructions.

  • Added to your Shopping Cart!

    Anchoring (Behavioural Economics)

    • SKU: 02-4128-10497-01
    • Instant Download

    • £5.00