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WHEN CHOICE IS DEMOTIVATING

Summary
The authors demonstrate that although more choices might appear desirable, then may sometimes
have detrimental consequences. This is usually referred to as Choice Overload. They use three
experiments to reach this conclusion. These are summarized in the table below.

Experiment 1 Experiment 2 Experiment 3

Methodology 1) Used a display in a 1) Participants were 1) Participants were


shopping mart with asked to watch a divided into: No
24 flavors of Jam in movie and then write choice, Limited choice
one case and 6 in the an response paper on and Extensive choice
other. the same and asked to taste
2) Participants were 2) Participants were chocolates
allowed to taste and either given 6 topics 2) They were further
then purchase the (rotated into 5 questioned on their
jam at the main groups) or 30 topics satisfaction before
display and after the tasting
process

Results 1) The response rate 1) Response rate was 1) No difference in terms


was higher in the higher in the 30 of decision
case of 24 flavors, but topics case. More methodology in all
the number of students submitted three cases. Time
samples tasted was the review. varied.
not significantly 2) Quality of Essays 2) Initial satisfaction
different. received suggested higher in extensive
2) Purchase rate was that people, who case
high in the 6 flavors took the 6-topic case, 3) Post sample
case. wrote better essays. satisfaction and
3) Conclusion is that 3) Conclusion partly purchase rate higher
people are initially reinforces the results in case of limited
attracted to variety, from Study 1. choice as compared to
but more variety other two
hampered their
decision to buy.

OVERALL POSITIVES OVERALL NEGATIVES


1) The study was extensive, in trying out 1) No clear conclusion about response
three different experiments in three rate (initial satisfaction) in three cases
different conditions. 2) In Expt 3, questions about satisficing
2) Clear distinctions between pre and post could have been framed better.
satisfaction, and purchase rates 3) Two additions: Cases where decision
3) Reasonable manipulation checks, and mattered substantially, and individual
random samples. differences among different people.