Skip to content Skip to main navigation Report an accessibility issue

Common Biases


The first thing you experience influences all subsequent experiences.

Availability heuristic

Your most recent, emotional, and/or unique experiences are the first ones you turn to when making judgments/justifications.

Backfire effect

You consider a challenge to your belief as an attack and therefore double down on it.

Barnum effect

Presented with vague data, your brain fills in the gaps, making it seem specific/personal to you.

Belief bias

You refuse to question certain treasured beliefs.

Bystander effect

You assume others will respond before you in an emergency/time of need.

Confirmation bias

You are more likely to agree with information that supports your prior conclusions (and ignore information that doesn’t).

Curse of knowledge

After learning something, you assume it’s obvious to everyone.


You ignore the complexity of past experiences when comparing them to current experiences, ergo the past was better than the present.

Dunning-Kruger effect

Experts know things are complex and underestimate their abilities; novices have an overly simple view and overestimate their abilities.

Framing effect

The context and subtle cues inherent in a situation manipulate your decisions.

Fundamental attribution error

You judge your own behavior considering intent and circumstance, but write others off as always exhibiting certain behavior.


Dissent is avoided; stagnant conformity preserved (because conflict scares you).

Halo effect

Your criticisms of people are influenced by how attractive they are, or how much you like them.

In-group bias

Those in your own group are favored as better (right more often or more distinctive).

Just world hypothesis

You believe the world you prefer (where things are “fair” and you’re allowed to do what you want) must exist.

Negativity bias

Negative experiences are disproportionately remembered and influential to decisions.

Placebo effect

You can dupe yourself into feeling symptoms/relief just because treatment has happened.


When you feel you are being forced, or that your perspective/time is not respected by someone’s requests, you are likely to do the opposite or resist, disregarding whether the request is good or bad.

Self-serving bias

You credit yourself for your successes but blame others for your failures.

Spotlight effect

You overestimate how much people notice your behavior or appearance.

Sunk cost fallacy

When you’ve invested in something, you don’t want to let it go.