Hypothesis evaluation from a Bayesian perspective

Baruch Fischhoff, Ruth Beyth-Marom

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Explores the potential of Bayesian inference as a theoretical framework for describing how people evaluate hypotheses. First, a set of logically possible forms of non-Bayesian behavior is identified. Second, existing research is reviewed in a variety of areas to see whether these possibilities are ever realized. The analysis shows that in some situations several apparently distinct phenomena are usefully viewed as special cases of the same kind of behavior, whereas in other situations previous investigations have conferred a common label (e.g., confirmation bias) to several distinct phenomena. A number of attributions of judgmental bias are called into question, and it is suggested that in some cases the bias is different than what has previously been claimed, whereas in others there may be no bias at all. (89 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)239-260
Number of pages22
JournalPsychological Review
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 1983


  • Bayesian inference as theoretical framework for hypothesis evaluation, literature review


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