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Minnesota State University, Mankato

Minnesota State University, Mankato

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MSU Mankato professor, alum featured in 'Golf Digest' magazine

Golf's "honesty meter" focus of 'Golf Digest' article with MSU Mankato's Dan Sachau.

2012-02-15
Minnesota State Mankato news release

Who follows or fails golfing’s time-tested honesty meter?  That’s the focus of research by Minnesota State, Mankato Psychology Professor Dan Sachau and MSU, Mankato alum Luke Simmering, a doctoral student in the Industrial/ Organizational Psychology Program at Louisiana Tech University, that appears in the March issue of Golf Digest, on the newsstands this week. 

The article Where do you fall on golf’s honesty meter? presents research conducted by Sachau and Simmering where they asked over 2,000 active golfers if they would be willing to break a variety of golf rules. 

"Not surprisingly, most participants were unwilling to break the rules," Sachau said.  "Golfers are, in general, an honest bunch.  However, the golfers who were willing to break a given rule dramatically overestimated the proportion of the population who would also break the rule." 

This is what psychologists call the false consensus bias.  For any given rule, between 89 and 99 percent of the rule-breakers thought that most people would break the rule. In other words, to a cheater - most people are cheaters. 

This is the second collaboration by Sachau and Simmering in Golf Digest.  Last year, the magazine covered a study by the two researchers on equipment purchases.  And, currently, they are working with Max Adler from Golf Digest on a study about risk taking.

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