The Dunning-Kruger Effect Effect

The Dunning-Kruger effect is well known. It is the disproportionate confidence displayed by those who are less competent or less well informed.

Less well known, and more pernicious, is the Dunning-Kruger Effect effect. This is the disproportionate confidence of an academic clique that considers criticism of the clique can only be valid if the critic has read at least a dozen of the clique’s self-indulgent, jargon-filled papers. A clear indication of the Dunning-Kruger Effect effect is the readiness to chant “Dunning-Kruger effect”.

14 Replies to “The Dunning-Kruger Effect Effect”

  1. I assume you have in mind some example(s) of an academic clique acting in that way. So am curious to know the details …

      1. Looks like I dodged a bullet. Technical Teachers College 1967 covered real teaching issues, probably because the principal Gordon Bail was a mathematician. I did get burnt however in 2008 when enrolled at Deakin in a M Ed. Their online delivery did not deliver – many files were invisible. The final straw was a linguistics teacher who arrived 3 weeks late and immediately confused mood and tense.

  2. Malcolm Roberts comes to mind with his exemplary performance on QA as a climate change denialist a few years ago. He managed to exasperate Brian Cox amongst others with his apparent lack of comprehension of the data.

  3. I wrote about the Dunning-Kruger effect in a recent article I wrote on my website titled ‘Do you Know Who You Are? – :// – Feel free to check it out!

    1. Thanks, Joanne. A nice post. i have no doubt that the D-KE is a thing. However, D-KEE is also a thing, and I believe it is becoming much more of a thing.

      Modern society is diseased by credentialism, where waving the correct piece of paper allows one to claim authority, and to ignore the concerns and arguments of those who are not members of the priesthood. That is almost always nasty and often silly, though it is less of an issue in solidly grounded disciplines such as mathematics: there, usually (but not always) the piece of paper reflects some genuine knowledge and ability. The much greater problem is with quicksand disciplines, such as education research, where D-KE matters almost none and D-KEE runs riot.

      1. Thanks Marty for stopping by and for your comment 😀🙏. I agree with the point you made about credentialism! Without that piece of paper you can’t get through the gate keepers. But looking at the bright side, with the internet and platforms such as WordPress and others if you have something of value to say you can do so without having to ask permission to anyone!

        1. True. The liberation of publishing has had some undeniable benefits. But, I believe it has caused much more harm than good. I hope to write about this soon.

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