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Chapter 14

Chapter 14

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PSYC 213
Jelena Ristic

PSYC 213 Cognition Chapter 14: Applied Cognitive Psychology Summary This chapter considers how cognitive psychology has been applied to address many real- world problems. Examples of applied cognitive psychology discussed in previous chapters include mnemonics (ways to facilitate remembering and prevent forgetting) and eyewitness testimony (legal process determines the conditions under which we should take eyewitness testimony seriously or be skeptical). Areas of study that psychologists have focused on in this chapter: Human Error -Classified in terms of the possible sources of different kinds of error -Norman/Reason proposed ATS theory -Spoonerism: speech errors Ergonomics -how to arrange keyboard, chairs and desks to make office work both productive and enjoyable, also called human factors research -User friendly objects: help a person to perform a task in a natural way, which is easy to understand and use -a work situation is analyzed in terms of three different interfaces: task interface, organizational interface (of concern to device manufacturers, administrators and industrial/organizational psychologists) and user interface (cognitive psychologists) -Keyboards: QWERTY accidental series of events may lock technology into a particular irreversible path, other keyboards aren’t easier to use -Text Messaging: combine the immediacy of a phone call with the convenience of an answering machine message and the premeditation of e-mail. Textish tendencies increase with the intimacy of the relationship between sender and receiver, inner speech, makes communication more private -Pointing Devices: the more frequently a target is used, the closer it should be to the pointer. If the user must make the pointer travel a longer distance, then the target should be made as large as possible. Affordances -Notion introduced by J.J Gibson -Instructions: if an object affords action, instructions are not necessary -Presenting Information: the importance of including clear instructions and illustrations for complicated devices -Searching for Information: the accuracy of users’ assessment of information scent will determine how successful their foraging strategy will be Designing the User Interface -Recognition: easily identifiable meanings to symbols or icons -Modularity: Simon illustrated the evolution of complex systems by means of the parable of the watchmakers: if a task is designed so that parts can be completed and the whole assembled from them, it will be much easier to complete the task than if the task requires all-or-none completion in one fashion. -Consistency: the user need only understand a part of the interface in order to generate the whole range of possible interactions with the system: ie. Knives in the drawer organized according to use/tasks -Books or Computers? People prefer to learn from books due to possible primacy effect Learning by Design -Massed versus Distributed Practice: Distributed Practice produces better recall of information -Reading as a Study Strategy: Massed practice (reread article immediately after reading for the first time) led to better performance immediately after study but distributed practice (reread article seven days after reading it for the first time) led to better results when testing was delayed. -Random versus Systematic Practice: Systematic practice produces faster learning but random practice produces better learning in the long-run -Immediate versus Periodic Feedback: Periodic feedback produces better subsequent performance than does immediate feedback -Successful versus Unsuccessful Metacognition: retrieval fluency (the ease with which information can be recalled, failure of metacognition) zone of proximal development (Vygotsky’s concept, learning is optimal when we work on material that is just challenging enough but not too challenging) Definitions Problem-centered versus method-centered: Cognitive psychology can be so concerned with doing methodologically correct studies that it loses sight of the practical problems that need to be addressed. However, a problem-centered cognitive psychology runs the risk of methodological sloppiness. Applied cognitive psychology requires a delicate balance between being problem- centered an
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