The Importance of Normative Beliefs to the Self-Prophecy Effect
Journal Applied Psychology. 2003 Jun; Vol 88(3): pp 423-31.
10 Pages Posted: 26 Aug 2014
Date Written: June 1, 2002
Asking people to predict whether they will undertake a target behavior increases their probability of performing that behavior. Now referred to as the self-prophecy effect, this phenomenon has been demonstrated across several contexts. Although theoretical explanations for the effect have been offered,empirical evidence for proposed accounts is sparse. The current research tests the theoretically relevant precondition for the effect that normative beliefs — evaluations of what is socially desirable or appropriate — underlie manifestation of the self-prophecy effect. Results of 2 experiments for different behaviors indicate that the act of making a prediction is most effective when normative beliefs are strong.Implications of these findings are discussed in relation to theoretical explanations for the effect and successful use of self-prophecy to promote socially desirable behaviors.
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation