ESP and Personality Patterns

By Gertrude Raffel Schmeidler; R. A. McConnell | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 4
Further Tests of Individual Sheep and Goats

FROM a full analysis of the three series described in the preceding chapter, one point was established with reasonable certainty: two groups of subjects who could score at different levels of ESP had been separated from each other. The major difference between the two was presumably that of acceptance or rejection of the possibility of paranormal success under the conditions of the experiment--but this was only a presumption, since there were other obvious differences between the two groups (number of runs per session, knowledge of score after each run, interior decoration of the experimental room, perhaps more warmth in the experimenter's response to the "sheep," etc.). In the next four series many of these differences were controlled and, as will be seen, the sheep-goat effect persisted.

As implied in the last chapter, the emphasis of the research shifted, after the first three series, from a contrast of sheep with goats to an analysis of personality factors involved in ESP scoring. There was no effort, in any later series, to make the goats less comfortable than the sheep. The procedure already described for testing the sheep was followed, in all essentials, for both sheep and goats of the four further series of individual tests. There were the following minor changes. All subjects were required to make nine runs. To save time, subjects were instructed to make three runs without interruption. After each series of three runs the responses were scored. There was a short break between successive sequences of three runs, which was filled with a short projective test, or with conversation, or both. A further change, necessitated by a removal from the Harvard Psychological Laboratory to the Harvard Psychological Clinic for the fourth, fifth, and sixth series,1 and to the rooms of the American Society for Psychical Research for the seventh series, was that the target lists were kept

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1
The distinction among the fourth to sixth series was primarily chronological.

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