On making the Right Choice: A Meta-Analysis and Large-Scale Replication Attempt of the Unconscious Thought Advantage

Mark Nieuwenstein, Tjardie Wierenga, Richard Morey, Jelte Wicherts, Tesse Blom, Eric-Jan Wagenmakers, Hedderik van Rijn

Research output: Contribution to conferencePosterAcademic


Are difficult choices better made after a momentary diversion of thought than after deliberation? Studies examining the existence of such an unconscious thought advantage (UTA) have yielded mixed results. Here, we report a meta-analysis and a large-scale replication study (N = 423) that met the conditions deemed optimal for replicating the UTA. The large-scale replication study yielded no evidence for the UTA, and the meta-analysis showed that reports of this effect are confined to unreliable experiments employing small sample sizes. Accordingly, we conclude that there exists no reliable support for the existence of an UTA in making a difficult choice.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Event35th Annual Conference of the Society for Judgment and Decision Making - Long Beach, California, United States
Duration: 1-Jan-2014 → …


Conference35th Annual Conference of the Society for Judgment and Decision Making
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityLong Beach, California
Period01/01/2014 → …

Cite this