Volume 17, Issue 2
  • ISSN 1572-0373
  • E-ISSN: 1572-0381
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An experiment examined goal understanding and how perceivers’ suspiciousness was associated with the accuracy, valence, and certainty of their inferences about a pursuer’s goal. In initial interactions, one dyad member was randomly assigned as the pursuer, and the other was the perceiver. The congruency of the perceiver’s and the pursuer’s conversation goals (i.e., discordant, identical, or concordant) and the perceiver’s cognitive busyness were manipulated. Results confirmed that accuracy decreased as perceivers’ suspiciousness increased only for not-busy perceivers in the goal-discord condition because perceivers’ inferences were negatively valenced. Results also supported the hypotheses that certainty decreased as perceivers’ suspiciousness increased only for not-busy perceivers in the goal-discord condition and that certainty increased as perceivers’ suspiciousness increased both for not-busy perceivers in the identical-goal condition and for busy perceivers in the goal-discord condition.


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