Students should also watch out for the sunk-cost fallacy while they’re in the process of completing assessments. The sunk-cost fallacy involves continuing an endeavor only because we invested time, money, and/or effort in it. It can take hold when we feel like it’s wrong to quit an activity, hope things will eventually improve, or are afraid of starting something new.
These examples show how the sunk-cost fallacy can interfere with how students approach assessments and how if-then planning could help them steer clear of it:
Whenever you’re introducing an assessment to your students, make it a habit to discuss how these common cognitive biases could prevent them from getting fully prepared. Our worksheet can help students construct if-then planning statements that will help them identify what they need to do to perform well on an upcoming test, project, or paper. Encourage them to share their ideas with the whole class!