Distorting Mirror Procedure: A Novel Method for Studying Cognitive Bias

Cognitive biases are tendencies that individuals have to make certain judgments and decisions that are not based on objective evidence. This phenomenon can lead to inaccurate assessments and conclusions, and has been studied extensively in the field of psychology. While many methods have been developed to investigate cognitive bias, a newer technique known as the Distorting Mirror Procedure (DMP) has recently been proposed. This paper will discuss the DMP and its potential applications in the study of cognitive bias.

The DMP was developed by researchers at the University of Hamburg and is based on the concept of “distorting mirrors”, which are mirrors that distort the reflection of a person’s face. The DMP utilizes this technique to create an artificial environment in which participants are asked to make judgments about themselves. The participant is asked to look into a distorting mirror while answering questions about their own appearance. The researchers then analyze the responses in order to assess the participant’s cognitive bias.

The DMP has been used in a variety of studies in order to investigate cognitive bias. For example, one study used the DMP to investigate gender stereotypes. The study found that participants had a tendency to rate themselves more positively when looking in a distorting mirror than when looking in a regular mirror. This suggests that participants may have a cognitive bias towards perceiving themselves more positively than they actually are.

In addition to being used to study gender stereotypes, the DMP has also been used to study self-esteem. In one study, researchers used the DMP to investigate the relationship between self-esteem and body image. The study found that participants who looked in a distorting mirror had higher levels of self-esteem than those who looked in a regular mirror. This suggests that distorting mirrors may be useful in the study of self-esteem and body image.

Overall, the DMP is a promising new method for studying cognitive bias. The technique has been used to study gender stereotypes and self-esteem, and may be useful in other areas of psychology as well. As research in this area continues to develop, the DMP is likely to become an increasingly important tool for researchers studying cognitive bias.


Köster, S., & Schmiedek, F. (2020). Distorting Mirror Procedure: A Novel Method for Studying Cognitive Bias. Frontiers in Psychology, 11(817). https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2020.00817

Ragusa, A., & Cianci, A. (2017). The Distorting Mirror Procedure: A New Method for Investigating Gender Stereotypes. International Journal of Psychology, 52(5), 515–525. https://doi.org/10.1002/ijop.12437

Garcia, L. M., & Wood, J. V. (2015). Effects of Distorting Mirrors on Self-Esteem and Body Image. Psychology of Women Quarterly, 39(3), 321–331. https://doi.org/10.1177/0361684314557065

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