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PSYC*1000 Psychology in Modules - Module 27 Summary Notes

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PSYC 1000
Benjamin Giguere

Module 27Thinking October 29 2013ConceptsCognition all the mental activities associated with thinking knowing remembering and communicatingConcepts mental grouping of similar objects events ideas or people eg the concept of a chair can represent many different kinds of chairs all for sittingconcepts give us information with little cognitive effort Form concepts by developing prototypes mental images or best examples of a categoryOnce we place an object in a category our memory of it later shifts towards the category prototypeProblem Solving Strategies and ObstaclesSome problems we solve through trial and errorOther problems we use algorithms or heuristicsAlgorithms methodical logical rules or procedures that guarantee solving a particular problem contrasts with the usually fasterbut also more error proneuse of heuristicsHeuristics simple thinking strategy that often allows us to make judgements and solve problems efficientlyInsight sudden realization of a problems solution contrasts with strategy based solutions strikes suddenly no type of warning and usually brings satisfaction Cognitive tendencies can lead us astray howeverwe more eagerly seek out and favor evidence verifying our ideas than evidence refuting themConfirmation bias tendency to search for information that supports out preconceptions and to ignore or distort contradictory evidenceOnce we incorrectly represent a problem its hard to restructure how we approach it this is due to fixation inability to see a problem from a different perspectiveexample of fixation is mental set our tendency to approach a problem with the mindset of what has worked for us previously predisposes how we thinkcan sometimes be an obstacle to problem solving mental sets from past experiences predisposes us to do certain things a certain way
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