2020 Research in the Capitol

Presentation Type

Open Access Poster Presentation

Abstract

The public’s perceptions of the police are critical; positive perceptions are related to people’s willingness to obey the law and cooperate with law enforcement. Past research has found that demographic variables are related to perceptions of the police. This study hypothesizes that those with a higher level of need for cognition and numeracy are more likely to view the police positively. This study included 443 U.S. residents; in addition to replicating the role of demographic variables, this study found that after controlling for demographics, perceptions of the police were positively related to need for cognition and numeracy. This study also found that the racial disparity in perceptions of the police was mediated by education, income, and objective numeracy. Overall, this study indicated that thinking disposition plays a significant role in how the public perceives the police.

Start Date

24-3-2020 11:00 AM

End Date

24-3-2020 2:30 PM

Event Host

University Honors Programs, Iowa Regent Universities

Faculty Advisor

Jiuqing Cheng

Department

Department of Psychology

File Format

application/pdf

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Mar 24th, 11:00 AM Mar 24th, 2:30 PM

Perceptions of the police: The role of need for cognition and numeracy

The public’s perceptions of the police are critical; positive perceptions are related to people’s willingness to obey the law and cooperate with law enforcement. Past research has found that demographic variables are related to perceptions of the police. This study hypothesizes that those with a higher level of need for cognition and numeracy are more likely to view the police positively. This study included 443 U.S. residents; in addition to replicating the role of demographic variables, this study found that after controlling for demographics, perceptions of the police were positively related to need for cognition and numeracy. This study also found that the racial disparity in perceptions of the police was mediated by education, income, and objective numeracy. Overall, this study indicated that thinking disposition plays a significant role in how the public perceives the police.