The Role of Regulatory Fit in Pseudoscientific Claims

  • Maureen Plante MacEwan University


This research focuses on why pseudoscientific claims may continue to persist by focusing on the work of Higgins’ (2002) Regulatory Fit theory. This study examines the effects of Regulatory Fit on undergraduates' responses to evaluating a pseudoscientific claim for a memory enhancement. Persistent beliefs in pseudoscientific claims are present at the undergraduate level despite high value on critically analyzing these claims.  We aim to show Regulatory Fit (having a promotion or prevention focused goal orientation) is persuasive in accepting different types of pseudoscientific belief. Regulatory Fit may play a role in accepting pseudoscientific claims as they may induce natural positive or negative feelings that can influence how people feel about the claim’s message.

Discipline: Psychology

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Rodney Schmaltz