We completed a meta-analysis to investigate the relationship between delusions in psychosis and 4 cognitive biases: "jumping to conclusions" (JTC), the "bias against disconfirmatory evidence" (BADE), the "bias against confirmatory evidence" (BACE), and "liberal acceptance" (LA). Building on recent meta-analyses we compared more narrowly defined groups. We identified 35 JTC, 8 BADE, 7 BACE, and 6 LA studies for inclusion. Groups with schizophrenia who were currently experiencing delusions demonstrated greater JTC, BADE, BACE, and LA than groups with schizophrenia who were not currently experiencing delusions, who in turn demonstrated no more JTC than healthy control groups. Hence JTC, BADE, BACE, and LA co-vary with delusions in cross-sectional samples of people with schizophrenia. Groups who were experiencing delusions due to other psychiatric illnesses also demonstrated greater JTC than healthy controls, and equivalent JTC to groups with schizophrenia currently experiencing delusions. Hence JTC is associated with delusions across a range of diagnoses. Groups with other, nondelusional psychiatric illnesses demonstrated less JTC, BADE, BACE, and LA than groups with schizophrenia currently experiencing delusions, less JTC than groups experiencing delusions due to other diagnoses, and no more JTC, BADE, BACE, or LA than healthy control groups. Hence JTC, BADE, BACE, and LA were not associated with psychiatric illnesses in general. Our results indicate all 4 biases are associated with delusions specifically rather than merely with a diagnosis of schizophrenia or with being psychiatrically ill, consistent with the possibility that they contribute to delusional severity.
- Bias against confirmatory evidence
- Bias against disconfirmatory evidence
- Cognitive bias
- Delusional disorder
- Liberal acceptance