Study: Know-It-Alls Actually Less Informed About The World Than Their Peers

We all know at least one person who likes to run their mouth and thinks they’re an expert on everything. Now science confirms they’re not nearly as clever as they think they are. University of Michigan researchers conducted six studies that focused on several topics and found belief-superior people were consistently overestimating their own knowledge. Researcher Michael Hall adds, “‘Whereas more humble participants sometimes even underestimated their knowledge, the belief superior tended to think they knew a lot more than they actually did.” Also, in one experiment the belief-superior individuals were more likely to choose articles that supported their set of beliefs and ignore articles that disagreed with their beliefs. Which another researcher explains by saying, “Having your beliefs validated feels good, whereas having your beliefs challenged creates discomfort, and this discomfort generally increases when your beliefs are strongly held and important to you.”