Optimistic bias regarding campus violence

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Abstract

The study extends the existing optimistic bias literature by being the first to document the perceptual bias within the context of school-based violence. It is also the first of its kind to include both actual experience (with related risks) and vicarious experience (through the media) in a study of optimistic bias. Findings from a survey of students indicate that optimistic bias is an appropriate frame for understanding why students fail to take measures to anticipate or prevent violence in school environments. The study replicates existing findings regarding the impact of personal experience on perceptual bias and extends those findings to vicarious learning via the media. Implications for campaigns and future research are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalCurrent Research in Social Psychology
Volume6
Issue number16
Publication statusPublished - Sep 18 2001

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Psychology

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