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.

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1k views

Why don't people read instructions?

Some people are very careless when reading instruction on a work task they've been given or in reading any other kind of text. They would skip some of the sentences, not get deep into other and ...
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1answer
395 views

What is the relative importance of shape and color in object recognition?

Do people recognize objects faster when both shape and color are present? Can color introduce more cognitive load to identify the object? Let's say there is a row of icons. Users need to quickly (no ...
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1answer
146 views

Can Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) present symptoms from very particular stimuli?

Sensory processing disorder can cause over or under reactions to sensory input, like loud sound. Can those afflicted with this disorder be okay from a particular sound played at a particular volume ...
5
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1answer
129 views

What causes people to rapidly lose skill after becoming moderately good at something?

I've noticed that people often manage to become moderately good at something, but seem to reach some sort of peak at that level and then rapidly start getting worse again. I've seen this happen with ...
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1answer
586 views

The effects of online chat on written language skills

With the advent of texting and online social networking. There has been a dictionary of new words and acronyms, based on abbreviations. I have noticed that I will misuse there, they're and their, hear ...
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1answer
90 views

Does psychology have a name for the “click” experienced in mathematics?

To understand what I mean, for three days I stared at a formula that looked Greek. Its semantics of relationship was unknown. The mathematics was just one long blur without logic and making no sense. ...
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1answer
573 views

Closure, an actual psychology term relating to filling in information?

I'm currently reading a book called "Understand Comics" and a term has come up called closure. I've understood this concept before and the book describes closure as the process the brain goes through ...
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1answer
139 views

Psychological research on memorability of passwords?

There are lots of ad-hoc rules that people are happy to propose about passwords, such as: Pick a phrase you can remember easily, and then use the initial letters. A random short sequence of letters, ...
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1answer
172 views

Why is it common for people to default to a single causal source to explain new phenomena?

I am constantly bombarded by allegations that almost every relatively unusual event is the result/proof of some conspiracy/plan set by a specific powerful entity. The typical reasoning behind such ...
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1answer
84 views

Research operationalizing so-called strategic thinking?

Is there contemporary research in trait psychology, which attempts to operationalize the structures behind a strategic thinking style? I'm thinking of a style of problem solving as taught in officer ...
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3answers
169 views

Is it possible to induce the processes that occur during sleep such as memory “garbage collection” without actually sleeping?

Some time ago I opened a question comparing drug withdrawal and sleep deprivation symptoms. In fact, my main objective for that question was to know if there was by any chance, a possibility to live ...
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2answers
39 views

What terms describe “schema” at various stages of acceptance?

According to WordNet 3.0, quoted at TheFreeDictionary.com, in psychology, schema means "an internal representation of the world; an organization of concepts and actions that can be revised by new ...
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3answers
152 views

Does sugar change our short-term behaviour?

In physical terms, sugar has a great influence: increases energy in our body. But does it influence our behaviour? Is it possible that we act differently because of high amount of consumed sugar?
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1answer
2k views

Current theories of the psychology of ambivalence

This question querying the authenticity of people's words and actions and the resulting commentary after this answer, has led me to ask this question. Ambivalence is a state of having simultaneous, ...
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1answer
123 views

Why do people overestimate future happiness when they imagine acquiring something like a house or winning the lottery?

When a person says he would be happy to win the lottery he is usually wrong? Why are people bad at judging their happiness in the future? A person who knows that he will get a fancy house in the ...
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1answer
90 views

How can the aversion response be explained neurologically?

If Dopamine and Dopamine D2 receptor is involved in craving, wanting and clinging towards something or incentive salience Dopamine is closely associated with reward-seeking behaviors, such as ...
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1answer
100 views

Does meditation improve working memory more than exercise?

I have noticed that I feel much more mentally sharp after doing an hour of moderate exercise in the morning. On the contrary, when I meditate, I feel no such difference in my mental alertness. Isn't ...
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1answer
136 views

Has there been any serious research on subliminal messaging?

I certainly don't question the existence of subliminal perception which has been demonstrated many times in priming studies like those of Daniel Schacter and many others, nor do I reject the notion of ...
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2answers
144 views

Are there NP-Hard or NP-Complete problems that humans a really good at solving?

It has been noted that humans are good at solving the travelling salesmen problem under certain constraints. Are there other NP-hard or NP-complete problems that human beings are good at solving? Has ...
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2answers
118 views

Why do people often do unnecessary things while performing a main task?

And this is not about procrastination (I'm almost certain). I've been noticing it since childhood that people (me included) tend to do unnecessary side activity, especially if they're invested in the ...
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1answer
96 views

What is the impact of showing the amount of unattended notifications to the user?

What is the difference in cognitive effects on the user between simply showing that there are 'some' unattended notifications, or showing how many notifications there are? Take Facebook's ...
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1answer
102 views

What personality traits affect ability to cope with pain?

It has been shown that pain impairs cognitive function, in this question and the following studies on the effects of headaches on cognition. Moor et al write It must therefore be emphasised that ...
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1answer
377 views

Can we increase our higher order thinking (HOT) skills by practicing inductive reasoning?

I previously asked about the conceptual links between higher order thinking and inductive reasoning. This question focuses on the potential for improving higher order thinking through practicing ...
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1answer
153 views

Does medication to treat Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder reduce associated cognitive deficits?

Some studies point to existence of cognitive deficits in OCD (it seems that these deficits are not comorbid but have the same neurological roots as OCD). Unfortunately I found no studies with positive ...
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0answers
17 views

Is there a hierarchy of gestalt visual stimuli processing?

Let's say that we have a set of shapes. They can be grouped according to the different Gestalt laws of grouping. However, different Gestalt principles will divide the set into different groups, e.g. ...
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0answers
112 views

Is there a relation between speed of executing a task and ones intelligence?

I recently came across a code refactoring problem. Considering the risk of getting into a risky bug later I switched to my usual mode of think and solve it, rather than go and make the changes fast. ...
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0answers
56 views

What cognitively interesting event-related potentials at FP1, FP2, TP9 or TP10 can be measured with consumer-grade EEG hardware?

I'm looking for cognitively interesting event-related potentials at places like FP1, FP2, TP9 or TP10 that can be measured with consumer-grade EEG hardware. Right now I have an Interaxon Muse EEG and ...
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0answers
84 views

Why has behaviourism fallen out of favour?

Despite the catchy title, I'm not interested in personal opinions here. I am however, interested in feedback on how to better phrase the question so as to avoid personal opinions. After some ...
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0answers
53 views

Does a loser prefer the winner to subsequently lose or win?

Most major league sports have some form of tournament bracket where there are several rounds of elimination before a winner is determined. In most of them, the winning team is undefeated over the ...
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0answers
30 views

Why do I type “it's” when I know it should be “its” [duplicate]

I know the difference between "its" and "it's". When I read it, even in my own writing, I can see incorrect usages almost instantly. However, when I type, I often type "it's" when I should write ...
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0answers
50 views

How to compute auditory steady state responses?

Simple question: How does one usually go about computing an auditory steady state response (ASSR)? I have data where speech was amplitude modulated to a 40 Hz sine tone. There's 3.5 minutes of data; ...
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2answers
132 views

Does fixing cognitive biases do more harm than use?

The Kahneman–Tversky interpretation of biases as deviation from rationality was challenged by Gigerenzer on the basis that heuristics help making decisions and, thus, rational from the evolutionary ...
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2answers
101 views

Does pain reduce cognitive abilities?

Does subjecting a person to pain reduce his cognitive abilities? If so, what is the process that reduces the ability? (By process, I mean the changes happening in the nervous system as a result of ...
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1answer
732 views

Is learning to do a task automatically an example of intuition?

I'm looking for some examples to understand what people call their intuition at work when making their decisions. For example: We learn to type and then after some time we begin to type by ...
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1answer
65 views

Do researchers and laypeople understand statistics differently?

I'm looking for references related to how researchers and laypeople understand concepts of statistical inference. In particular, I'm looking for articles in which subjects could demonstrate ...
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1answer
64 views

What is the name of the concept in psychology that makes requirements hard to articulate?

One of my teachers in Computer Science explained this idea about requirements: Product owners don't know what they want, they need a feedback loop of requirements gathering to push them to say ...
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2answers
111 views

Is there a formal definition for the difficulty of learning something?

Sometimes I hear that one subject is harder than another, but never scientifically investigated. For example, in high school, it's commonly thought that mathematics is the hardest subject. But I think ...
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2answers
91 views

Which of ML classifiers do humans use?

Background: In many situations, people use to classify objects without knowing Machine Learning theory. For example, if small children see an unknown animal in the wild, (s)he tries to classify it as ...
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1answer
56 views

In SDT, how is an increase in detection sensitivity conceptualised in terms of the movement of the distributions?

Is it conceptualised as the signal distribution moving rightward, or as the noise distribution moving leftward?
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2answers
74 views

Are there “awareness” related mirror neurons or processes in the brain that get activated by awareness?

I'm reading the "The Power of Now" book by Ekhart Tolle, in which he describes a spiritual practice by which attention/awareness is focused on the currently experienced mental state. For example, ...
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2answers
84 views

Is there a difference between visual short term memory and visual working memory?

As far as I can tell the two terms are used interchangeably. Do these two separate terms exist for historical reasons, or is there a distinction I'm missing?
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2answers
92 views

What causes student errors on a problem involving differentiating a factorial?

Consider the following maths problem, assuming only a high-school level knowledge of calculus: If $f(x) = x!$, find $df/dx$ Almost all of my respondents seemed to switch on their "mental ...
4
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1answer
163 views

Is metacognition an affective, cognitive, or behavioural variable?

Is metacognition an affect or cognitive or behaviour variable ? I want to study variation in metacognition and working memory ability level and its effect on inductive reasoning. Therefore i am ...
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2answers
87 views

'Always Give a Reason Why' - How to describe this subject area?

I summarise http://rayedwards.com/always-give-a-reason-why/: In Dr. Robert Cialdini’s book, Influence, he cites a research study showing that simply adding the word “because” to a request ...
4
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1answer
53 views

Reduction of the hippocampus due to childhood neglect/abuse

A Scientific American article, "Childhood Stress Decreases Size of Brain Regions", by Christie Nicholson briefly mentions the implications of childhood neglect and abuse on brain structures. I was ...
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2answers
130 views

Difficulty of having profound scientific discussions with more than 2 or 3 people?

I am a physicist and the other day, a friend of mine pointed out something that I had never noted explicitly before. This is an empirical observation, but it seems true to me, and it may raise a lot ...
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5answers
178 views

Is it possible to develop curiosity?

I know that curiosity is developed kinda on it's own. You don't know when you'll become curious. But is it possible to train one's mind to become curious about certain subject? I've seen titles and ...
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1answer
56 views

Can placebo effect be increased by modifying the perception about prescription/intake setting?

I've noticed the following pattern within my own thinking - multiple unrelated events "combine" to produce a certain action, particularly creativity and innovation. I'm trying to understand if this ...
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2answers
149 views

Is it possible to objectively measure the amount of pleasure a person is experiencing?

I'd like to know if it's possible to quantify somebody's "fun meter". Maybe by measuring the amount of endorphin produced. Because every person is unique, I don't expect that amount to make another ...
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2answers
131 views

Can we enter data at the speed of thought?

I have the subjective personal experience that the speed at which I can enter information in a computer through a keyboard is so slow and my thoughts "run" so fast, that I find it an especially ...