A study on the relation between one's moral value foundations and biased memory
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- Institutt for psykologi 
This study has looked at whether the effect of biased processing of one’s preconceived opinions, driven by goals applies to arguments in moral dilemmas. The arguments each supported different moral value foundations that are found to be universal, but differing in importance between individuals. These are found to have an emotional component, which was hypothesized to contribute to the biased processing of arguments concerning one’s most important foundations. The biased processing was hypothesized to lead to a bias in long-term memory. To investigate this, the participants’ moral value foundations were measured. They were then presented seven moral dilemmas, with two belonging arguments each. One day later, the participants’ memory of the arguments was tested. No biases in the participants’ memory were found. The moral value foundations’ relatedness to specific emotions was further investigated. To do this, a wordlist memory-test was conducted, where each word was paired with a picture of an emotional expression. Memory for these words was tested immediately after they were shown, and then again the day after. It was hypothesized that memory for words shown with a disgusted expression would be related to all the moral value foundations. It was also hypothesized that memory for words shown with an angry expression would be related to how important the individualistic values were to the participants. The results showed no relation between sensitivity to disgust and importance of any of the moral value foundations. A significant relationship was however found between sensitivity to anger and importance of harm avoidance.