Essay on Paranormal Beliefs And The Paranormal
In American society, paranormal beliefs are highly prevalent. A 2005 Gallup poll showed that 73-76% of Americans held some sort of paranormal belief. (Moore, 2005) With the pervasiveness of these views, one might wonder, what is it about a person that makes them believe in the paranormal?
One study by Smith, Johnson, and Hathaway, which was conducted on participants who were connected with an institute that studies spirituality, found that openness to experience (OE) and sensation seeking (SS) are positively correlated with paranormal beliefs. (Smith, Johnson, & Hathaway, 2009) In this study, participants were given a survey which consisted of “Zuckerman’s SS scale, Form V, the NEO-PI-R, the Anomalous Experience Inventory, and a sociodemographic sheet.” (Smith, Johnson, & Hathaway, 2009) Their results showed that there were significant correlations between paranormal beliefs and OE (r = .46, p < .0001) and paranormal beliefs and SS (r = .31, p < .001).
Another study conducted by Aarnio and Lindeman, which was conducted using students from 14 universities and 6 vocational schools around Finland, found that educational level and students’ field of study might impact paranormal beliefs. (Aarnio & Lindeman, 2005) The participants in the study were given a survey which consisted of Tobacyk’s 26-item Revised Paranormal Beliefs scale and the Rational-Experiential Survey. The results of their ANOVA showed that students who attended vocational school had more…