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II. Biases in Intuition and Perception Why not rely only on intuition?

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Presentation on theme: "II. Biases in Intuition and Perception Why not rely only on intuition?"— Presentation transcript:

1 II. Biases in Intuition and Perception Why not rely only on intuition?

2 A. Introduction Where does intuition/common sense start? –Perceptions - Noticing, attending to, interpreting, remembering stimuli...experiences YOU encounter –Are these carbon copies of “reality”? Consider this: –How many stimuli could you focus on at this moment? –50,000 facts about every topic! –500 times the Encyclopedia Britannica!

3 B. Perceiving our world How do we manage to navigate our perceptions? 1. Tendency to categorize –a. Schemas: Cognitive structures that represent knowledge about a concept, event, person, etc, Categories then make us efficient – but...

4 B. Perceiving our world. Folk Croak Soak Folk Croak Soak

5 B. Perceiving our world. Can lead to biases... 2. Biases in perceptions and thinking: Importance of expectations. “filter” or “lens” a. Assimilation: Interpreting new information in terms of our existing beliefs. –“Rebellion is a good thing”

6 B. Perceiving our world. Quick demo…. b. Confirmation Bias: Tendency to search for information that confirms our preconceptions (expectations). –Darley & Gross (1983): “Hannah Study”

7 B. Perceiving our World d. Self-Fulfilling Prophecy: People’s expectations lead them to act in ways that cause others to confirm those expectations. –Rosenthal & Jacobson (1968): “Bloomers Study”

8 B. Perceiving our world e. Belief Perseverance: Persistence of one’s initial conceptions, even when they are proved incorrect. –Anderson et al., (1980): Firefighter Study Conclude: Why is intuition problematic? Based on perceptions - which can be biased due to our tendency to be efficient processors of stimuli (i.e. we use “short cuts’ - categories and expectations)

9 C. Can we accurately infer our own behavior? Nisbett & Wilson (1977): “Pantyhose Study”

10 D. Problem Solving 1. Algorithm: Step-by-step exhaustive procedure, using trial and error to solve problems. 2. Heuristics: Simple, rule-of-thumb strategies for solving problems.

11 C. Problem Solving 2. Heuristics HHTTHTTHHHHHTTTT George… a. Representativeness: Making a judgement about something based on how similar it is to a typical case in its category. - may lead to ignoring base-rate information.

12 2. Heuristics Which is more common or more likely?... b. Availability: Judge the likelihood of something happening in terms of how easy examples come to mind.

13 Important to think critically about psychology and how we interpret our world –Can’t rely ONLY on intuition, common sense, or folk wisdom... –When perceiving our own and others’ behavior, we are vulnerable to biases. However, those biases serve us well most of the time. Make us capable of dealing with the enormous amount of stimuli and information we encounter.


15 Conclusions..... Psychology is: –Very broad and diverse. –Findings/conclusions not always obvious. –A science (more on this to come) Why not rely on intuition and individual observations/common sense?

16 Conclusions from yesterday... People’s perceptions are biased. - To be able to navigate through our social worlds, we need short-cuts (for efficiency) - or - categories (e.g., schemas) - to quickly make sense of stimuli. -Expectations provide powerful “short-cuts” that influence: -what (how) we notice, interpret, and remember information. -how we solve problems.

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