“Dysrationalia” Among University Students: The Role of Cognitive Abilities, Different Aspects of Rational Thought and Self-Control in Explaining Epistemically Suspect Beliefs

Nikola Erceg, Zvonimir Galić, Andreja Bubić


The aim of the study was to investigate the role that cognitive abilities, rational thinking abilities, cognitive styles and self-control play in explaining the endorsement of epistemically suspect beliefs among university students. A total of 159 students participated in the study. We found that different aspects of rational thought (i.e. rational thinking abilities and cognitive styles) and self-control, but not intelligence, significantly predicted the endorsement of epistemically suspect beliefs. Based on these findings, it may be suggested that intelligence and rational thinking, although related, represent two fundamentally different constructs. Thus, deviations from rational thinking could be well described by the term “dysrationalia”, meaning the inability to think rationally despite having adequate intelligence. We discuss the implications of the results, as well as some drawbacks of the study.


dysrationalia; epistemically suspect beliefs; cognitive abilities; rational thinking; self-control

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