Self-fulfilling prophecies

Arthur A. Stukas, Mark Snyder

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


People typically enter their social interactions with preconceived beliefs and expectations about how other people will act and they often use these beliefs as guides for their own actions with these others. These actions, in turn, may prompt their interaction partners to behave in ways that confirm the initial beliefs. This phenomenon, in which belief creates reality, has been demonstrated for a wide variety of expectations. In this article, we review the extensive research literature, identifying the moderators and mediators that explain when and why self-fulfilling prophecies occur, as well as the practical and theoretical implications of these effects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEncyclopedia of Mental Health, Third Edition
Subtitle of host publicationVolume 1-3
ISBN (Electronic)9780323914987
ISBN (Print)9780323914970
StatePublished - Jan 1 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


  • Beliefs
  • Confirmation
  • Expectations
  • Motivation
  • Power
  • Self-fulfilling prophecy
  • Self-perceptions
  • Social interaction
  • Stereotypes
  • Stigma
  • Therapy


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