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Measuring Laypeople's Trust in Experts in a Digital Age: The Muenster Epistemic Trustworthiness Inventory (METI): Three Datasets.

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Researchers

Name
Hendriks, Friederike
Kienhues, Dorothe
Bromme, Rainer

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Dataset Information

Title Measuring Laypeople's Trust in Experts in a Digital Age: The Muenster Epistemic Trustworthiness Inventory (METI): Three Datasets.
Original Title Wie sich das von Laien in Experten gesetzte Vertrauen im digitalen Zeitalter messen lsst: "The Muenster Epistemic Trustworthiness Inventory (METI)": Drei Forschungsdatenstze.
Citation Hendriks, F., Kienhues, D., & Bromme, R. (2015). Measuring Laypeople's Trust in Experts in a Digital Age: The Muenster Epistemic Trustworthiness Inventory (METI): Three Datasets. [Translated Title] (Version 1) [Files on CD-ROM]. Trier: Center for Research Data in Psychology: PsychData of the Leibniz Institute for Psychology Information ZPID. https://doi.org/10.5160/psychdata.hsfe15mu08
Language of variable documentation German
Responsible for Data Collection Hendriks, Friederike; Kienhues, Dorothe; Bromme, Rainer
Data Collection Completion Date 2015
Dataset Publication 2015
Dataset ID hsfe15mu08
Study Description Given their lack of background knowledge, laypeople require expert help when dealing with scientific information. To decide whose help is dependable, laypeople must judge an expert's epistemic trustworthiness in terms of competence, adherence to scientific standards, and good intentions. Online, this may be difficult due to the often limited and sometimes unreliable source information available. To measure laypeople's evaluations of experts (encountered online), we constructed an inventory to assess epistemic trustworthiness on the dimensions expertise, integrity, and benevolence. Exploratory (n = 237) and confirmatory factor analyses (n = 345) showed that the Muenster Epistemic Trustworthiness Inventory (METI) is composed of these three factors. A subsequent experimental study (n = 137) showed that all three dimensions of the METI are sensitive to variation in source characteristics. We propose using this inventory to measure assignments of epistemic trustworthiness, that is, all judgments laypeople make when deciding whether to place epistemic trust in - and defer to - an expert in order to solve a scientific informational problem that is beyond their understanding.
Hypotheses 1. Epistemic trustworthiness can be differentiated in the three dimensions expertise, integrity and benevolence.
2. These dimensions are separable, though to some extent correlated.
Keyphrase measurement of epistemic trustworthiness of experts in digital communication, test construction, METI, expertise & integrity & benevolence, research data
Funding German Research Foundation (DFG) within the Research Training Group 1712 "Trust and Communication in a Digitized World"
Rating Due to random sampling the study findings can not be generalized to the general population, however possibly to the population of young German graduates.
For psychometric properties see Hendriks, Kienhues & Bromme (in press).

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PSYNDEX Classification and Controlled Terms

Classification Tests & Testing
Mass Media Communications
Social Perception & Cognition
Controlled Terms Trust (Social Behavior)
Computer Mediated Communication
Questionnaires
Data Collection

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Research Method Description

Research Method Description Test Data
Classification of Data Collection Research Instrument
Research Instrument Study 1: Participants received 18 semantic opposites to rate a scientific expert on Likert scales ranging from 1 (e.g. professional) to 7 (e.g., unprofessional).
Exploratory factor analysis revealed three factors - "expertise", "integrity" and "benevolence" - explaining 61.66% of the total variance.

Study 2: The constructed Muenster Epistemic Trustworthiness Inventory (METI) was reduced to 16 items. To test the three-factor structure of the inventory, a new data set was assessed with confirmatory factor analysis. The results confirmed the three-factor structure.
After elimination of two items, the final version of the METI consists of 14 items. All three factors are related to the comprehensive theoretical construct "epistemic trustworthiness".

Study 3: The final version of the METI consisting of 14 items was administered in an experimental study. Participants had to rate the epistemic thrustworthiness of six ficticious persons, who were indicated as potential authors of a blog entry. The blog entry was about a study from the field of neurology. Descriptions of authors varied along each of the dimensions of epistemic trustworthiness (low vs. high expertise, low vs. high integrity, low vs. high benevolence). The results indicated that the METI is able to measure epistemic trustworthiness in a differentiated way.
For detailed information see Hendriks, Kienhues & Bromme (2015).
Data Collection Method Data collection in the absence of an experimenter
- Online-Survey
Time Points repeated measurements
Survey Time Period Study 1: August & Septembre 2013
Study 2: January, February & March 2014
Study 3: July & August 2015
Characteristics -
Population Young German graduates
Experimental Pool Individuals
Sample Convenience Sample
Subject Recruitment Study 1: Participants registered in the Bromme research units internal volunteer database were contacted via e-mail containing the link to the online survey. Participants could choose the time and location of their participation. Subjects took part in an Amazon voucher lottery worth a total of 200 euro.
Study 2: Participants were recruited in lectures at the University of Muenster. Students interested in participation could leave their email adress for contact. They were contacted via e-mail containing the link to the online survey. Participants could choose the time and location of their participation. Subjects took part in an Amazon voucher lottery worth a total of 200 euro.
Study 3: Participants registered in the Bromme research units internal volunteer database were contacted via email containing the link to the online survey. Furthermore, advertisements were posted in a newsletter for students at the University of Muenster and on the German magazine "Psychologie Heute"s website. Participants could choose the time and location of their participation. Subjects took part in an Amazon voucher lottery worth a total of 100 euro.
Sample Size Study 1: 237 individuals; Study 2: 345 individuals; Study 3: 137 individuals
Return/Drop Out Study 1: 300 persons followed the link to open the online survey. Only those who completed the survey were included in the analysis (79%).
Study 2: 406 persons followed the link to open the online survey. Only those who completed the survey were included in the analysis (85%).
Study 3: 243 persons followed the link to open the online survey. Only those who completed the survey were included in the analysis (56%).
Gender Distribution Study 1:
75,5% female subjects
24,5% male subjects

Study 2:
69,3% female subjects
30,7% male subjects

Study 3:
75,2% female subjects
24,8% male subjects
Age Distribution Study 1: 19-47 years; Study 2: 18-50 years; Study 3: 19-53 years
Special Groups -
Country Germany
Region -
City -
Variables Study 1:
Subject ID
Time to complete survey
Demographic variables (age, gender, educational degree)
Inventory items (to be developed)

Study 2:
Subject ID
Time to complete survey
Demographic variables (age, gender, educational degree)
Items of the Muenster Epistemic Trustworthiness Inventory (METI)

Study 3:
Subject ID
Time to complete survey
Demographic variables (age, gender, educational degree)
Items of the Muenster Epistemic Trustworthiness Inventory (METI) in the different experimental conditions

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Data Status

Data Status Complete Data Set
Original Records Data were assessed via an online survey (conducted by Unipark).
Transformation Using an online survey software, subjects data were immediately assessed in a machine-readable form.

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Description of the Provided Data

Description Research data file of study 1
File Name hsfe15mu08_fd1.txt
Data Content 237 subjects, 26 variables
Data Points 237*26= 6162 data points
Variables Subject ID (1), time to complete survey (1), age (1), gender (1), educational degree (1), items of the inventory (under construction), e.g. competence, intelligence, ...(18), means of the extracted factors expertise, integrity, benevolence (3)
MD5 Hash 120041d8fdb7db8dfe58c99cc8160b33
  
Description Research data file of study 2
File Name hsfe15mu08_fd2.txt
Data Content 345 subjects, 24 variables
Data Points 345*24= 8280 data points
Variables subject ID (1), duration (1), age (1), gender (1), educational degree (1), Muenster Muenster Epistemic Trustworthiness Inventory (METI): Items of the dimension expertise (7), METI: Items of the dimension integrity (5), METI: Items of the dimension benevolence (4), means of the dimension expertise, integrity and benevolence (3)
MD5 Hash 51bf2aef8964e517d7ce089043b3b78e
  
Description Research data file of study 3
File Name hsfe15mu08_fd3.txt
Data Content 137 subjects, 191 variablens
Data Points 137*191= 26167 data points
Variables Subject ID (1), consent (1), age (1), gender (1), educational degree (1), condition "Expertise low": Items of METI (14), condition "Expertise high": Items of METI (14), condition "Integrity low": Items of METI (14), condition "Integrity high": Items of METI (14), condition "Benevolence low": Items of METI (14), condition "Benevolence high": Items of METI (14), condition "Expertise low": Recoded Items of METI (14), condition "Expertise high": Recoded Items of METI (14), condition "Integrity low": Recoded Items of METI (14), condition "Integrity high": Recoded Items of METI (14), condition "Benevolence low": Recoded Items of METI (14), condition "Benevolence high": Recoded Items of METI (14), means of expertise in the different conditions (6), means of integrity in the different conditions (6), means of benevolence in the different conditions (6)
MD5 Hash 40ead4150dda23a5266b6f2f4a649c74
  

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Description of Additional Materials

Description File Name
Codebook of the research data file hsfe15mu08_fd1.txt hsfe15mu08_kb1.txt
Codebook of the research data file hsfe15mu08_fd2.txt hsfe15mu08_kb2.txt
Codebook of the research data file hsfe15mu08_fd3.txt hsfe15mu08_kb3.txt

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Publications Directly Related to the Dataset

Publications Directly Related to the Dataset
Hendriks, F., Kienhues, D., Bromme, R. (2015). Measuring Laypeople's Trust in Experts in a Digital Age: The Muenster Epistemic Trustworthiness Inventory (METI). PLoS ONE 10(10): e0139309. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0139309Datensatz 0305481

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Further Reading

Further Reading
Bromme, R., & Goldman, S.R. (2014). The public's Bounded Understanding of Science. Educational Psychologist, 49 (2), 59-69. DOI:10.1080/00461520.2014.921572Datensatz 0282214
Bromme, R., Kienhues, D. & Porsch, T. (2010). Who knows what and who can we believe? Epistemological beliefs are beliefs about knowledge (mostly) to be attained from others. In L. D. Bendixen & F. C. Feucht (Eds.), Personal epistemology in the classroom: Theory, research, and implications for practice (pp. 163-193). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Datensatz 0232884
Origgi G. (2004). Is trust an epistemological notion? Episteme, 1(1), 6172.
Origgi G. (2014). Epistemic trust. In P. Capet & T. Delavallade (Eds.), Information Evaluation (pp. 35-54). New York: John Wiley & Sons. DOI: 10.1002/9781118899151.ch2
Sinatra, G. M., Kienhues, D., & Hofer, B. K. (2014). Addressing challenges to public understanding of science: Epistemic cognition, motivated reasoning, and conceptual change. Educational Psychologist, 49 (2), 123-138. DOI: 10.1080/00461520.2014.916216 Datensatz 0282216
Sperber, D., Clment, F., Heintz, C., Mascaro, O., Mercier, H., Origgi, G., & Wilson, D. (2010). Epistemic vigilance. Mind & Language, 25 (4), 359393. DOI: 10.1111/j.1468-0017.2010.01394.x

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