Realism of confidence in obsessive-compulsive checkers

Reuven Dar, Sigalit Rish, Haggai Hermesh, Migdala Taub, Mendel Fux

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


The study examined whether obsessive-compulsive (OC) checkers have reduced confidence in their knowledge. OC checkers were compared with panic disorder (PD) patients and nonpatient controls using a calibration-of-knowledge procedure. Participants completed a general knowledge questionnaire, rated their confidence in each answer, and estimated the total number of correct answers. These responses were converted to 2 measures of confidence relative to performance - over/underconfidence and over/underestimation. OC checkers had lower scores than nonpatients did on both measures, whereas the PD patients did not differ from either group. For the OC checkers, relative confidence was inversely related to the severity of obsessions. The authors speculate that confidence may depend on a confirmation bias in testing hypotheses and that the reduced confidence in OC checkers may reflect a disconfirmation bias in this population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)673-678
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Abnormal Psychology
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry


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