Enclothed cognition, a relatively new and largely unexplored discipline within psychology, is the study of the effect of clothing on cognitive processes. The purpose of this study was to continue and unite research on the fledgling fields of enclothed cognition and the auditory looming bias. In prior research, embodied cognition has been found to influence peoples’ guesses and estimations, and a person’s clothing has been found to influence their attentiveness. This study focused particularly on if a person’s embodied state as it is affected by clothing will affect their evolutionarily established aversion to approaching sounds, and on following up on the pilot study published on enclothed cognition by Adam and Galinsky in 2012. To accomplish this, participants were each divided randomly into one of three groups – a control group, a group who were told that the white coat they were given was an ‘artist’s coat,’ and a group who were told that the white coat they were given was a ‘doctor’s coat’ – whereupon they completed a looming task at a computer in the adjacent room. The results were analyzed to control for the possibility that, as participants were repeatedly exposed the same stimuli over the course of the experiment, they would learn better how to gauge the correct location of the sounds, leading to a training effect. Overall, there was no evidence that participants’ responses to auditory looming stimuli is affected by prolonged exposure over the course of the experiment. While the results of the study did again confirm the auditory looming bias, no significant interaction between the auditory looming bias and enclothed cognition was found, which seems to show that the psychological processes of the auditory looming bias and enclothed cognition are not strongly linked.


Herzmann, Grit




Cognition and Perception


Psychology, Auditory Looming, Enclothed Cognition, Evolutionary Psychology, Embodied Cognition, Perception

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis



© Copyright 2015 Corwin D. Ensz