Kruger received his B.S. in Psychology from Santa Clara University in 1993 (spending his junior year at Durham University, UK), and received his Ph.D. in Social Psychology from Cornell University in 1999.
Kruger is known for co-authoring a 1999 study with David Dunning. This study showed that people who performed in the lowest at certain tasks, such as judging humor, grammar, and logic, significantly overestimated how good they were at these tasks. This study has since given rise to what is known as the Dunning–Kruger effect, in which people who are bad at certain tasks mistakenly think they are in fact good at them. The study also found that people who performed slightly above average at identifying how funny a given joke was tended to be the most accurate at assessing how good they were at the assigned tasks, and that those who performed the best tended to think they performed only slightly above average.
- Kruger, Justin (Spring 2011). "JUSTIN KRUGER Curriculum Vitae" (PDF). Retrieved May 3, 2017.
- Cureton, Nadia N. "Justin Kruger: Associate Professor of Marketing". pages.stern.nyu.edu. Retrieved 2017-05-03.
- Kruger, J; Dunning, D (December 1999). "Unskilled and unaware of it: how difficulties in recognizing one's own incompetence lead to inflated self-assessments". Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 77 (6): 1121–34. doi:10.1037/0022-3518.104.22.1681. PMID 10626367.
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- Lee, Chris (25 May 2012). "Revisiting why incompetents think they're awesome". Ars Technica. Retrieved 25 May 2016.
- Stafford, Tom (25 November 2013). "The more inept you are the smarter you think you are". BBC Future. Retrieved 25 May 2016.