Is all of our thinking conscious?
The stuff we can talk about it (that's the definition of conscious)
But much is subconscious
Highly learned tasks can be done w/o attention
Knitting, some driving, reading a word
Can enter our thoughts with effort
Multitasking is a misconception
Multitasking is less efficient
Even (eating and reading) is slower than eating then reading
Multitasking on electronic devices is particularly problematic
Time to do each task increases, more errors, and memory for what you have done suffers
Attention is capacity limited and needed for complex tasks and for encoding
Subconscious thinking CAN enter consciousness…can think about "how we drive", etc.
Non-conscious think is never something that enters consciousness
Even when we want to know where an idea came from….
Intuition and implicit learning
Probably involves several stages of non-conscious thought
Often used in problem solving
Implicit learning is learning when we can't explain how we learned something or what it
is that we know
Native language, walking up the stairs are examples
Sometimes we are thinking consciously, we just aren't trying very hard so we say or do
We do a lot of things mindlessly…and make a lot of mistakes because of it!
But mindlessness allows our attention to be immediately available if we need it
Some theorists argue that we spend most of our lives in "mindless" mode only using
effortful processing when absolutely necessary Reasoning Rationally
See it on standardized tests
There Is one correct answer and it can be answered using the information given using an
algorithm or rule
Recipes are also algorithms!
e.g., if A, then B
How well do we use this logic?
People have trouble with formal logic
Tend to assume if A then B = if B then A
Think of a concrete example:
If you want to drink alcohol you must be 19
Not equivalent to if you are 19 you must drink alcohol
When problems are concrete we deal with them better
We use this the most
Many of life's problems don't have one correct answer and we don't always have all the
Use "heuristics" which are easy to remember tricks to solving problems or "dialectical
reasoning" in these cases
Heuristics and Dialectical Reasoning
Heuristics used in chess games and card games (for example)
Dialectical reasoning involves comparing two sets of arguments and deciding which
carries more weight (e.g., pro vs con)
Juries are supposed to o this as are voters
Barriers to reasoning rationally We saw how people have trouble with formal logic in the "card problem"
People have the capacity for formal reasoning, dialectical reasoning and making rational
judgements so why don't we do it more?
Exaggerating the improbable
We play lotteries with little chance of winning
We buy flood insurance with little chance of flooding
We are equipped to exaggerate the improbable when it could affect survival
Irrational fears, gambling for resources
We use our emotions, not logic, when making decisions
Hearing about 2 cases of "mad cow disease" triggered emotions and led to reduced beef
Hearing about BSE (the technic