Negative outcomes for those who tempt fate (#222)

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APA Style

Durand, A., Emhoff, C., Frey, K., Shea, B., & Holmes, K. J.. Negative outcomes for those who tempt fate. (2015, April 30). Retrieved 08:31, March 25, 2017 from

MLA Style

"Negative outcomes for those who tempt fate" Durand, A., Emhoff, C., Frey, K., Shea, B., & Holmes, K. J.. 30 Apr 2015 16:07 25 Mar 2017, 08:31 <>

MHRA Style

'Negative outcomes for those who tempt fate', Durand, A., Emhoff, C., Frey, K., Shea, B., & Holmes, K. J., , 30 April 2015 16:07 <> [accessed 25 March 2017]

Chicago Style

"Negative outcomes for those who tempt fate", Durand, A., Emhoff, C., Frey, K., Shea, B., & Holmes, K. J., , (accessed March 25, 2017)


Negative outcomes for those who tempt fate [Internet]. Durand, A., Emhoff, C., Frey, K., Shea, B., & Holmes, K. J.; 2015 Apr 30, 16:07 [cited 2017 Mar 25]. Available from:

Reference to Original Report of Finding Risen, J., & Gilovich, T. (2008). Why people are reluctant to tempt fate. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 95, 293-307.
Title Negative outcomes for those who tempt fate
If the original article contained multiple experiments, which one did you attempt to replicate? e.g., you might respond 'Study 1' or 'Experiment 4'. Study 1
Link to PDF of Original ReportView Article
Brief Statement of Original Result College students regard a negative outcome (not being accepted to Stanford) as more likely for a person who tempted fate by acting presumptuously (by wearing a Stanford T-shirt before being accepted) than for a person who acted cautiously (by stuffing the shirt into a drawer).
Type of Replication Attempted Highly Direct Replication
Result Type Failure to Replicate
Difference? Opposite Direction, .68
Number of Subjects 64
Number of Subjects in Original Study 62
Year in which Replication Attempt was Made 2014
Name of Investigators (Real Names Required) Durand, A., Emhoff, C., Frey, K., Shea, B., & Holmes, K. J.
Detailed Description of Method/Results Risen and Gilovich (2008, pp. 294-295) used the following materials and procedure:
Participants read a scenario in which Jon recently finished applying to graduate school and that Stanford was his top choice. The scenario specified that, typical of Jon’s mother’s optimistic nature, she sent him a Stanford T-shirt in the mail. Participants read either that Jon decided to stuff the shirt in the bottom of the drawer while awaiting Stanford’s decision or that he decided to wear the shirt the next day. Participants were then asked to indicate how likely they believed it was that Stanford would offer Jon acceptance by circling a number between 0 and 10, with 0 labeled not at all likely and 10 labeled extremely likely.
Our materials and procedure were identical to those of Risen and Gilovich (2008).

Participants rated Jon’s likelihood of acceptance to Stanford as no less likely when wearing the Stanford t-shirt as when not wearing the t-shirt. The experimental group’s ratings (M = 4.37, SD = 2.24) did not differ significantly from those of the control group (M = 4.16, SD = 1.69), t(62) = .42, p = .68. As shown in the right side of Figure 1, the mean ratings of the two groups were highly similar and, contrary to the original finding, the experimental group’s mean rating was descriptively higher than that of the control group.

There are at least three possibilities for why our results differed from those of Risen and Gilovich (2008). First, there may be differences in the perceived likelihood of Stanford acceptance between students at Colorado College and at Cornell University. Some participants reported that their knowledge of Stanford’s low acceptance rate influenced their low rating, which could explain why Colorado College students tended to rate Jon’s likelihood of acceptance lower than Cornell students did (Risen & Gilovich’s Cornell sample: experimental group, M = 5.19, SD = 1.35; control group, M = 6.13, SD = 1.02). Second, several participants in our experimental group reported that they interpreted Jon’s decision to wear the Stanford shirt as an indication of confidence in his acceptance. These participants expressed an assumption that Jon’s confidence indicated greater likelihood of acceptance. Third, our male and female participants rated Jon’s likelihood of acceptance differently. Although participant gender was not reported in the original study, our female participants’ ratings (Experimental: M = 4.00, SD = 2.20; Control: M = 4.60, SD = 0.99) aligned more closely with the original study’s overall means. Conversely, our male participants’ ratings (Experimental: M = 4.65, SD = 2.29; Control: M = 3.82, SD = 2.05) were in the opposite direction of the effect observed in the original study. Our sample contained more males (n = 36) than females (n = 28), and if Risen and Gilovich’s (2008) sample contained more females, this might explain the different patterns of results.

Any Known Methodological Differences
(between original and present study)?
Email of Investigator
Name of individuals who
actually carried out the project
Colorado College Psychology students
Location of ProjectColorado College, Colorado Springs
Characteristics of Subjects
(subject pool, paid, etc.)
University students from subject pool
Colorado College undergraduates participated in exchange for entry into a raffle for a $20 gift certificate.
Where did these subjects reside?United States
Was this a Class Project?Yes
Further Details of Results as pdf
Additional Comments
Email of Original Investigator
Quantitive Information
I have complied with ethical standards for experimentation on human beings and, if necessary, have obtained appropriate permission from an Institutional Review Board or other oversight group.
TAG: Attention TAG: JDM TAG: Language TAG: Learning TAG: Memory TAG: Perception TAG: Performance TAG: Problem Solving TAG: Social Cognition TAG: Social Psychology TAG: Thinking

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