For questions focusing on the interaction of many internal mental processes. If your question involves only one of memory, attention, language, decision-making, or perception then use the associated specialized tag instead of cognitive-psychology.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

9
votes
1answer
292 views

Cognitive explanation of why beta blockers are effective for anxiety

Beta blockers essentially reduce physical effects of anxiety and panic disorder, but there is no proof that there is a direct effect on anxiety. Some scientists believe there is an indirect effect. ...
9
votes
1answer
186 views

Are intelligence scores correlated with detection of second stimulus in an Attentional Blink test?

Definitions Attentional Blink: An attentional blink is a phenomenon where when presented with rapid visual stimuli if you are asked to track two particular stimuli you will fail to notice the second ...
8
votes
2answers
624 views

What term describes people that cannot feel pain?

I remember a case study about a girl who could not feel pain due to lacking certain somatosensory receptors; she went on to burn herself on a radiator because she could not feel her flesh burning and ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

Is there a psychological condition which promotes literal and overly complicated thinking?

Quote from Sheldon Cooper, Big Bang Theory IMDB Leonard: You convinced me. Maybe tonight we should sneak in and shampoo her carpet. Sheldon: You don't think that crosses the line? Leonard: ...
8
votes
3answers
346 views

Is it possible to create a false memory by trying to remember something that eludes you?

Sometimes I have difficulty remembering the specifics of an event, specifically if I'm tired or possibly have recently consumed alcohol. A close friend of mine has gotten me in the habit of ...
8
votes
2answers
349 views

What are the appraisals tendencies for fear and anger?

I understand the actions tendencies for fear and anger. For example: We might verbally insult someone when we are angry. We might feel like running away when we are afraid. According to appraisal ...
8
votes
1answer
238 views

How does the mind build a model of reality?

I'm interested if there has been any research or experiments that deal with how the human mind creates and perpetuates the idea of knowing something. I'm struggling to concisely express the question, ...
8
votes
1answer
112 views

Are there shapes defined by 3 (or more) generative parameters whose mapping to psychological similarity space is known?

I am trying to generate 4 shapes that are equidistant in psychological similarity space - meaning that they are all equally discriminable from one another - which differ in 3 parameters, such that ...
8
votes
1answer
113 views

Why aren't sleep measures consistently measured as mediators/moderators of cognitive performance?

Knowing that sleep quantity and quality affects cognitive performance across many domains, why aren't pre-test sleep measures or intra-test measures of arousal a standard part of all cognitive test ...
8
votes
1answer
382 views

Do children show top-down processing as much as adults do?

There has been much research into how top-down processing works, such as the suggestibility of patients to mishear lyrics based on what the patients are told they are. Is there any research to show ...
8
votes
1answer
131 views

Problem understanding the calculation of normative (Bayesian) base rates

I am having trouble understanding Table 1 of Gigerenzer, Hell, and Blank (1988, PDF, table on page 516): Focusing on the Jack row, it is stated that the mean probabilities of Jack being an engineer ...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

What are the real life applications for Probability Learning?

Probability learning is a principle that states probability of a response tends to match the probability of the reinforcement. How does one achieve such rationality under uncertainty? What are ...
8
votes
1answer
317 views

How do people visually recognize their own reflection?

I'm interested in how the brain processes and recognizes the image of the person's own face. A bit of background: A while ago I've developed an overlay-camera like app for iPhone that allows me to ...
8
votes
1answer
114 views

Could Fitts Law be used to measure difficulty in platform genre games?

I've been learning about Fitts' law and am wondering if it's applicable to measuring the difficulty of platform type games where the challenge is to hit the platforms? If so, this could be used to ...
8
votes
1answer
387 views

Attention Theory: is it impossible to avoid distraction?

I remember reading at some point in the literature that humans are unable to avoid distraction from a certain primary task if this task isn't using up close to all available 'resources' - basically ...
8
votes
1answer
344 views

What are the current suggested models for Primacy Effect in memory recall or personality impression?

What are the current suggested normative, mechanistic or phenomenological models for explaining primacy effect as was observed by Solomon Asch (1946) on personality impression, list-of-words memory ...
8
votes
1answer
109 views

What are the cognitive and neurological bases for apathy?

Apathy, or effectively the feeling of "not caring" or putting it colloquially, "not giving a rats", is something that most of us get sometime or another in varying degrees. My question is, what are ...
8
votes
0answers
105 views

Do people who lose their faith tend to replace it with other non-evidence-based reasoning?

I was watching this talk by Phil Plait given at TAM(The Amazing Meeting) 8. You can find a partial transcript here. It will help provide some context. In the talk he makes the following claim: ...
8
votes
0answers
390 views

How much sleep is required to restore maximum cognitive functioning? [closed]

Background: Recently I have really messed up my sleep schedule due to my procrastination. The internet points to some very basic conclusions but I would like to see actual experiments on effects of ...
7
votes
4answers
178 views

Why is it easier to remember the correct response for problems with many options rather than just two?

Sometimes it seems easier, at least for me, to remember an answer, when there are more than 2 options to choose from. For example, I easily remember my pin (14 bit), but hardly the lighter switch (up ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Why does repeating one word over and over again sound weird to us after some time?

This effect seems to be observed with almost any word. I would say this phenomenon 'works' for longer and complex words better. When we repeat a word over and over again, it starts to sound very ...
7
votes
2answers
446 views

Skin conductance responses to emotional stimuli

The skin conductance response (SCR) is said that cannot be reduced to one specific stimulus (Boucsein, 2012). Does this mean that if the participant is presented with stimuli of different emotional ...
7
votes
1answer
415 views

What is the maximum number of objects an average human being can recognize at once?

I'm wondering, how many objects can the average human being can recognize? For example, most of us can't look at this and say how many boxes there are without counting them: But I think we can ...
7
votes
1answer
108 views

What is a more modern interpretation of the terms egosyntonic/egodystonic?

Egosyntonic thoughts/ideas are those that are consistent with self-image, and egodystonic thoughts are recognized as inconsistent. For example, in obsessive compulsive disorder, the patient will ...
7
votes
1answer
362 views

What is the relationship between sociology and cognitive sciences?

I want to know what is the relationship between sociology and cognitive sciences. Let me start by short consideration of both: Sociology - well established discipline or a field of research ...
7
votes
2answers
178 views

Relationship between cognitive load and self-indulgent behavior in simple task completion

Background A subject in an office-building setting is asked to memorize a list of numbers and to write them down on a whiteboard in another room on the opposite side of the building. The subject ...
7
votes
1answer
338 views

What is the effect of mindfulness practice on cognition?

The following article by ScienceDaily reported on a paper in Psychological Science (Mrazek et al., 2013), claiming that mindfulness training led to improved working memory and GRE scores. These ...
7
votes
1answer
118 views

Philosophy Meets Neuroscience: The Molyneux's Problem

Consider the Molyneux's problem "If a man born blind can feel the differences between shapes such as spheres and cubes, could he similarly distinguish those objects by sight if given the ability ...
7
votes
2answers
330 views

To what extent does culture affect emotion perception?

In a globalized world, in spite of cultural differences, we share, at least at the symbolic level (language level), lots of things. Considering pictures that display emotions (affect), such as those ...
7
votes
1answer
113 views

What are the effects of negative self image on cognition and brain function?

All other things considered equal, what are the effects of a negative self image, on cognition and brain function? Are there any studies that would have specific data supporting cognitive outcomes ...
7
votes
1answer
81 views

How repeatable are cognitive science findings within the same individual?

Thanks to this website, I've seen a number of papers and scholarly articles that deal with cognition. I'm interested in how repeatable the findings are that are discovered as a result of experiments. ...
7
votes
1answer
129 views

Any attempts at testing or modeling the 'cognitive conception' of language?

For those unfamiliar, the 'cognitive conception of language' refers to a claim made by some theorists that, in the words of Carruthers: "besides its obvious communicative functions, language also ...
7
votes
1answer
162 views

Why is a lack of response to punishment in adults considered significant in diagnoses?

It seems that a lack of response to punishment is often considered useful in diagnosing conditions or symptoms. A good example of this may be in diagnosing psychopathy, in which a lack of response to ...
7
votes
1answer
136 views

What is the effect of merely expecting an interruption on performance?

There's a lot of research about how interruptions affect cognitive performance. Are there any studies that have looked at the effect of merely expecting to be interrupted (withou being actually ...
7
votes
2answers
76 views

Will hearing but not listening to a video mentor help me learn?

I have a A+ video mentor that I got through school. I was wondering if playing the videos as if they were music and just going about the rest of my tasks on the computer would help me to learn the ...
7
votes
1answer
164 views

What research has modelled the difficulty of mental mathematical calculation?

I posted this also on mathoverflow. What research has modelled the difficulty of evaluating a formula mentally (for your average, numerate, person, not a trained mental calculator)? For instance, ...
7
votes
1answer
118 views

Is there evidence for a unique isolated internal representation of loved ones?

Some time ago, I've read that the most significant people in a person's life have their own internal representation/model of within the person's mind. For example: An internal representation of a ...
7
votes
1answer
169 views

What cognitive processes occur during a mental exhaustion or 'burnout'?

Mental burnout - or mental exhaustion is not very pleasant, when one feels completely overwhelmed, something 'snaps' and it is hard to concentrate and maintain motivation. What are the cognitive ...
6
votes
3answers
308 views

How can one find out if he/she is brainwashed?

By brainwashed I mean indoctrinated with some political, religious or other type of propaganda. I assume that you can't be aware of this, because the lack of that awareness is the point of propaganda ...
6
votes
2answers
652 views

Why do people press elevator call buttons repeatedly?

Many people, particularly those in a rush, keep on pressing the elevator call button despite the light clearly indicating that it was previously pressed, and the knowledge that such action will have ...
6
votes
1answer
155 views

What causes systematic under- or over-estimation of general knowledge quantities?

What psychological theories predict whether individuals will underestimate or overestimate when responding to particular kinds of general knowledge quantity questions? For instance, I have seen an ...
6
votes
2answers
131 views

Does Andler's (2012) article on 'Mathematics in Cognitive Science' provide an accurate picture of mathematics in cognitive science?

Andler (2012) wrote: What role does mathematics play in cognitive science today, what role should mathematics play in cognitive science tomorrow? The cautious short answers are: to the factual ...
6
votes
2answers
330 views

What can cognitive psychology tell us about the results of the Stanford Prison Experiment?

One of the experiments that are always taught as prime examples of social psychology in action is the Stanford Prison Experiment In 1971, Zimbardo accepted a tenured position as professor of ...
6
votes
2answers
169 views

Is there a phenomenon where one feels alienation towards certain body parts

I am wondering whether is there a name for a phenomenon where one has feelings of "alienation" or feels that body parts (limbs, internal organs, etc) do not belong to him or are not "part of his body" ...
6
votes
1answer
152 views

Why are humans the only species to maintain relationships with other animals simply for pleasure?

In the wild, animals may share waterholes, and grazing areas. Some animals have symbiotic relationships one example being the hippopotamus and the oxpecker bird. The symbiotic relationships are based ...
6
votes
2answers
385 views

What is the difference between solving a problem and acquiring a skill?

Within the confines of cognitive psychology, what is the difference between these two tasks? In the literature, playing chess is generally seen as the exemplar of problem solving. But recently (thanks ...
6
votes
3answers
126 views

How does the brain compute sound localisation without the equations?

What sort of computations are used for localising sound with the ears, and how does the brain compute the time difference between sounds reaching each ear? I am interested in the specific mechanisms ...
6
votes
1answer
70 views

Any research on how we use visual category information in visuomotor tasks?

So I've been reading up on the Two-streams Hypothesis*, and it bothers me that the explanations both sides give only extend to tasks involving one type of visual information. For example, an ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

What's the difference between projecting and mirroring?

In Psychology 101, I learned about Projecting and Mirroring... I know one is where an individual sees his own problems in other people... I always forget the other concept and/or confuse the two. ...
6
votes
3answers
144 views

Abstract idealized mental visualization improves motor task performance

I practice martial arts (Aikido), which involves a lot of rotation. When practicing, I find that holding an abstract image in my head, instead of thinking about the actual technique, improves my ...