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Judgment under Emotional Uncertainty: The Effects of Specific Emotions and Their Associated Certainty Appraisals on Information Processing

Listed author(s):
  • Tiedens, Larissa Z.

    (Stanford U)

  • Linton, Susan
Registered author(s):

    The authors argue that emotions characterized by certainty appraisals lead to heuristic information processing, while emotions characterized by uncertainty appraisals lead systematic information processing. The firs study demonstrated that participants who are induced to feel emotions characterized by certainty (disgust and happiness) are more certain about their judgments when making a set of unrelated predictions than participants who are induced to feel emotions associated with uncertainty (fear and hope). In Study 2, a persuasion paradigm was used to show that emotions associated with certainty (anger and contentment) resulted in greater reliance on heuristic cues than emotions associated with uncertainty (worry and surprise). Study 3 showed that stereotype use increased after exposure to a film clip that induced disgust (a certainty associated emotion) than one that induced fear (an uncertainty associated emotion). In contrast to previous theories linking valence and processing, these findings suggest that the certainty appraisal content of emotions is an important characteristic in determining whether people engage in heuristic or systematic processing.

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    Paper provided by Stanford University, Graduate School of Business in its series Research Papers with number 1629.

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    Date of creation: Dec 2001
    Handle: RePEc:ecl:stabus:1629
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