Illusory correlation

false correlationIllusory correlations
In psychology, illusory correlation is the phenomenon of perceiving a relationship between variables (typically people, events, or behaviors) even when no such relationship exists.wikipedia
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Heuristics in judgment and decision-making

heuristicsheuristicpsychological heuristic
Most explanations for illusory correlation involve psychological heuristics: information processing short-cuts that underlie many human judgments.
Tversky and Kahneman offered the availability heuristic as an explanation for illusory correlations in which people wrongly judge two events to be associated with each other.

Confirmation bias

Backfire effectdisconfirmation biasconfirmation
This means that the development of illusory correlations was caused by deficiencies in central cognitive resources caused by the load in working memory, not selective recall.
Biased search, interpretation and memory have been invoked to explain attitude polarization (when a disagreement becomes more extreme even though the different parties are exposed to the same evidence), belief perseverance (when beliefs persist after the evidence for them is shown to be false), the irrational primacy effect (a greater reliance on information encountered early in a series) and illusory correlation (when people falsely perceive an association between two events or situations).

Rorschach test

Rorschach inkblot testRorschachinkblot
The concept was used to question claims about objective knowledge in clinical psychology through Chapmans' refutation of many clinicians' widely used Wheeler signs for homosexuality in Rorschach tests.
The Chapmans called this phenomenon "illusory correlation" and it has since been demonstrated in many other contexts.

Correlation and dependence

correlationcorrelatedcorrelations
In psychology, illusory correlation is the phenomenon of perceiving a relationship between variables (typically people, events, or behaviors) even when no such relationship exists.

Availability heuristic

availabilityAvailability biasavailability error
One of these is availability: the ease with which an idea comes to mind.
In the original Tversky and Kahneman (1973) research, three major factors that are discussed are the frequency of repetition, frequency of co-occurrence, and illusory correlation.

Psychology

psychologicalpsychologistpsychologists
In psychology, illusory correlation is the phenomenon of perceiving a relationship between variables (typically people, events, or behaviors) even when no such relationship exists.

Salience (neuroscience)

saliencesalientsaliency
A false association may be formed because rare or novel occurrences are more salient and therefore tend to capture one's attention.

Attention

concentrationfocusinattention
A false association may be formed because rare or novel occurrences are more salient and therefore tend to capture one's attention.

Stereotype

stereotypesstereotypicalstereotyping
This phenomenon is one way stereotypes form and endure.

Working memory

immediate memoryworkingworking memory capacity
In an experimental study done by Eder, Fiedler and Hamm-Eder (2011), the effects of working-memory capacity on illusory correlations were investigated.

Cognitive load

cognitive workloadcognitive load theorymental workload
In a second experiment, the authors looked into the effects of memory load in working memory on illusory correlations.

Apophenia

apophanyagenticityconnections in random or meaningless data

Observer bias

experimenter's biasexperimenter biasdid not meet their preconceptions