A parsimonious explanation of observed biases when forecasting one's own performance

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Forecasting one’s own performance on tasks is important in a wide range of contexts. Over forecasting can lead to unresponsiveness to advice and feedback. In group forecasting under forecasting may lead individuals to discount valuable inputs they could contribute. Research shows that those performing relatively poorly in tasks tend to make predictions that are too high, while high performers tend to under forecast their performance. Several explanations have been put forward for this ‘regressive forecasting’, such as a lack of metacognitive skills in poor performers and false-consensus bias in high performers. Others claim that the bias is simply an artefact of regression. In this study people were asked to forecast their performance on six multiple choice tests. The results suggest that a simple explanation based on the anchoring and adjustment heuristic would, at least in part, account for the phenomenon.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)112-120
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Forecasting
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016


  • Anchoring and adjustment
  • Judgmental forecasting
  • Metacognitive skills
  • Regression effects
  • Self-performance forecasting


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