Awe and Thinking About Science (03-06-19)

McPhetres has identified another benefit of feeling awed, after inducing awe by showing study participants scenes from the natural world (for instance, of the aurora borealis). McPhetres states that “Results from four pre-registered studies . . . indicate that manipulating awe through online . . . and virtual reality . . . videos, led to greater awareness of knowledge gaps [things that are no known]. Awareness of knowledge gaps was consistently associated with greater science interest and to choosing tickets to a science museum over tickets to an art museum.”  Awe can also be induced via remarkable workmanship or large size in a designed space/object, for example.

Jonathon McPhetres. “Oh, The Things You Don’t Know: Awe Promotes Awareness of Knowledge Gaps and Science Interest.”  Cognition and Emotion, in press,