Age, TMT, and the Correspondence Bias 1 Age Differences in the Effects of Mortality Reminders on the Correspondence Bias

Abstract

According to terror management theory, awareness of death affects diverse aspects of human thought and behavior. Studies have shown that older and younger adults differ in how they respond to reminders of their mortality. The present study investigated one hypothesized explanation for these findings: age-related differences in the tendency to make correspondent inferences. The correspondence bias was assessed in younger and older samples after deathrelated, negative, or neutral primes. Younger adults displayed increased correspondent inferences following mortality primes, whereas older adults’ inferences were not affected by the reminder of death. As in prior research, age differences were evident in control conditions; however, age differences were eliminated in the death condition. Results support the existence of age-related differences in responses to mortality, with only younger adults displaying increased reliance on simplistic information structuring after a death reminder.

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Cite this paper

@inproceedings{Maxfield2017AgeTA, title={Age, TMT, and the Correspondence Bias 1 Age Differences in the Effects of Mortality Reminders on the Correspondence Bias}, author={Molly Maxfield and Tom Pyszczynski and Jeff Greenberg and Michael N Bultmann}, year={2017} }