Graduate Program

Clinical Psychology

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Semester of Degree Completion


Thesis Director

Russell E. Gruber


The current study was designed to explore variables influencing psi performance including gender, belief in psi, and competition between men and women. Features of the experiment involved a methodology using a visual image of the receivers, simple spatial location as targets, and monetary incentive to increase competition in a game-show type of environment. One of the goals of this study was to explore the role of competition between groups of senders and receivers as a facilitator of telepathic communication. Results of a one sample t-test comparing overall hit rate for the sample with expected probability were not significant, t(98)= 1.22,p=. 1 I (one-tailed). However, a trend towards above chance hitting was evident. There was also no significant difference found between hit rates for men and women. In addition, all participants completed a belief questionnaire, on which they indicated their belief in mental telepathy on a 7-point-scale. It was hypothesized that belief ratings would correspond with hit rates—specifically that participants with high belief in psi phenomena would score above chance while those with low belief scores would score below chance. The results of an independent samples t-test show that high belief participants (M= 8.92, SD= 1.75) scored significantly higher on the telepathy task than low belief participants (M= 7.67, SD= 1.53), t(70)= -3.16, p < .001 (one-tailed), with a Cohen's D score of .76 for effect size. Given the strength of these findings, it appears that psi phenomena and mental telepathy, specifically, do occur and may be influenced by belief in psi, group setting, and competition. It is noteworthy when the variable of belief is not taken into consideration, the data appears to be random, yet once belief is considered, findings emerge.

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Psychology Commons