top of page


Study 1: meta-analysis of curiosity and interest 

We conducted a meta-analysis to analyze what existing questionnaire-based studies show about the relation between curiosity and interest. Pearson correlations are often used to weigh the closeness between variables, as the strength of correlations can serve as a proxy to indicate the interdependency of variables. However, there is a large variety in the measurements of curiosity and interest (Grossnickle, 2016; Schmidt & Rotgans, 2020; Shin & Kim, 2019). The meta-analysis assesses the heterogeneity of the correlations of the scales, and how they are dependent on the nature of the scales, rather than other extraneous factors. Information about measurement level of the constructs (e.g., trait/stable level, situational/task level) was collected as a key moderator, given its important role for understanding the differences between curiosity and interest.

2.1. Method

2.1.1. Literature search to identify studies for inclusion

An overview of our search and screening procedures is presented in Fig. S1. Titles and abstracts were examined for the following terms: curiosity AND interest. We searched Web of Science, PsycInfo, ERIC, Scopus and ProQuest for articles published in peer-reviewed journals, conferences, or dissertations prior to April 2020. We also searched Google Scholar and kept the first 1000 search results as our supplementary databases based on the prior suggestions (Haddaway, Collins, Coughlin, & Kirk, 2015). The initial search yielded 3701 publications. All the search results can be traced from After excluding 738 duplicate publications, the first author and a research assistant closely reviewed the remaining 2963 abstracts using specific study inclusion criteria.

bottom of page