The halo effect occurs when our overall positive impression of a person, product, or brand is based on a single characteristic. If our first impression is positive, the subsequent judgments we make will be colored by this first impression.
The halo effect can hamper our ability to think critically. It can be particularly problematic in decision-making contexts, such as job interviews and purchase decisions.
Information bias is a type of error that occurs when key study variables are incorrectly measured or classified. Information bias can affect the findings of observational or experimental studies due to systematic differences in how data is obtained from various study groups.
Information bias is also known as measurement bias or misclassification.
Self-selection bias (also called volunteer bias) refers to the bias that can occur when individuals are allowed to choose whether they want to participate in a research study. Because participants often differ from nonparticipants in ways significant to the research, self-selection can lead to a biased sample and affects the generalizability of your results.
Cognitive bias is the tendency to act in an irrational way due to our limited ability to process information objectively. It is not always negative, but it can cloud our judgment and affect how clearly we perceive situations, people, or potential risks.
Everyone is susceptible to cognitive bias, and researchers are no exception to that. Therefore, cognitive bias can be a source of research bias.
Undercoverage bias occurs when a part of the population is excluded from your sample. As a result, the sample is no longer representative of the target population. Non-probability sampling designs are susceptible to this type of research bias.
Nonresponse bias happens when those unwilling or unable to take part in a research study are different from those who do.
In other words, this bias occurs when respondents and nonrespondents categorically differ in ways that impact the research. As a result, the sample is no longer representative of the population as a whole.
The Baader–Meinhof phenomenon refers to the false impression that something happens more frequently than it actually does. This often occurs when we learn something new. Suddenly, this new thing seems to appear more frequently, when in reality it’s only our awareness of it that has increased.
The Baader–Meinhof phenomenon is also known as the frequency illusion or recency illusion. While it’s mostly harmless, it can affect our ability to recall events correctly, or cause us to see patterns that aren’t actually there.
Publication bias refers to the selective publication of research studies based on their results. Here, studies with positive findings are more likely to be published than studies with negative findings.
Positive findings are also likely to be published quicker than negative ones. As a consequence, bias is introduced: results from published studies differ systematically from results of unpublished studies.
Publication bias can affect any scientific field, leading to a biased understanding of the research topic.
Recall bias refers to systematic difference in the ability of participant groups to accurately recall information. Observational studies that rely on self-reporting of past behaviors or events are particularly prone to this type of bias.
Recall bias threatens the internal validity and credibility of studies using self-reported data.