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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10
votes
1answer
119 views

What happens when a person “imagines” how food could taste like just from looking at it?

What processes are triggered by imagining the taste of food (let's assume it's sealed so that its smell doesn't reach the test subject's nose) only by looking at it, based on memories of food with ...
5
votes
0answers
113 views

Chunking Patterns and Enjoyment of Applying Patterns

I've been reading a book "The Theory of Fun in Game Design" it talks about two concepts of psychology that I wanted to confirm are true. The writer the book isn't a psychologist. The two concepts ...
35
votes
3answers
2k views

What makes people easily subscribe to pseudoscientific theories?

There are many theories/disciplines that have been categorized as pseudoscience in the scientific community. The list includes many things that are regularly even quoted in media like graphology, ...
10
votes
1answer
261 views

Is the theory of Information Metabolism a reasonable scientific theory?

Background I have been checking out various personality typing assessments lately when I came across a Personality typing system known as Socionics which aims at explaining relationships between ...
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
0answers
394 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 ...
4
votes
0answers
88 views

When one activity makes you less distracted doing another activity? [closed]

Background: When I'm coding, I sometimes make tea, and as long as I'm drinking the tea, I find myself more focused. Drinking tea seems to make me focus more. Thus, it seems that while doing something ...
15
votes
1answer
213 views

Do cultures differ in the perception of emotions from body expression?

In their classic study, Ekman and Friesen (1971) identified seven facial expressions recognised by people universally across all cultures as depicting certain emotions: happiness, sadness, surprise, ...
9
votes
1answer
187 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 ...
10
votes
1answer
209 views

Can psychosomatic reactions be completely unconcious?

I had always considered that psychosomatic reactions, such as Psychogenic pain, while "real" to the person experiencing them, would be a concious reaction at some level. That is to say, if the person ...
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 ...
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, ...
9
votes
1answer
207 views

Why do participants prefer to give input values that are “round numbers”?

Background I have just been analysing some data where participants attempt to control a dynamic system with integer numeric inputs between 0 and 100. I've noticed that there is a general tendency for ...
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 ...
4
votes
2answers
100 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 ...
13
votes
2answers
288 views

What factors improve mood and increase cognitive functioning when people wake up?

I'm a software engineer doing some research in order to figure out if developing some applications are worth the effort. This work is applied to computational devices including mobile devices and even ...
8
votes
2answers
367 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 ...
4
votes
1answer
626 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 ...
15
votes
2answers
1k views

Effect of words highlighting on reading comprehension

I'm interested if there are studies dealing with text understanding and POS (part of speech) coloring, or coloring syntactic/semantic information. The studies should solve the questions like: Which ...
21
votes
6answers
2k views

What is the current “accepted” science behind dream interpretation?

I'm doing some casual reading about dream interpretation (meaning I'm reading the wikipedia entry) and the article mentions that there are several ways of thinking about dreams from a psychological ...
6
votes
3answers
309 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 ...
9
votes
1answer
372 views

What are biological primary mathematical skills?

In doing a bit of background reading for this question I came across a section in the book Cognitive Neuroscience: The Biology of the Mind on page 602 stating: There are no sex-related differences ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the difference between IQ and Executive Function?

I was reading an article today that stated that people with high IQ's that have trouble with social skills, memory, being punctual (on time), emotional control, and "growing up" are likely to have ...
11
votes
1answer
324 views

Under what conditions does 60hz video produce visual artifacts?

There are some important thresholds of frame rate in video playback that effect whether or not animation appears fluid. This wikipedia page about Visible Frame Rate suggests that a framerate of 60 ...
7
votes
1answer
164 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
138 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 ...
3
votes
2answers
197 views

Is it a good idea to play an instrument while studying? If so, what are the benefits?

We've all heard that listening to classical music and such while studying can be beneficial, but I was wondering about actually playing an instrument? If I were to absentmindedly play my accordion ...
15
votes
2answers
568 views

Does any evidence show that Smartphone users have poorer memory?

An ages old complaint is that new technology harms memory. Why remember something when you can look it up? In a course on Human Memory I distinctly recall an interesting discussion on phones and ...
6
votes
1answer
332 views

What is the cognitive cost of switching contexts?

A common reason to use Conventions and standards in Human Computer Interaction is to limit the cost of Context Switching. I searched to find general evidence of the cognitive costs of context ...
7
votes
1answer
115 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 ...
5
votes
1answer
165 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 ...
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 ...
9
votes
1answer
164 views

When is higher confidence predictive of less accuracy?

Normally, when an individual is more confident in a particular response (e.g., memory decision, general knowledge answer), he or she is also more likely to be accurate. There are also studies in which ...
9
votes
2answers
266 views

How does the brain act on the information gained via eye saccades?

I've often heard that the process of saccading can be described as a statistical sampling technique. Specifically, the standard textbook definition of the function of saccades seems to be that the ...
11
votes
3answers
229 views

How can I find open access journals for cognitive science research?

What open access journals that publish research in cognitive science/psychology exist? Apart from PLOS ONE, are there any other open access journals that publish research in cognitive ...
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 ...
8
votes
3answers
352 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 ...
6
votes
2answers
322 views

Are there any laws of memory?

Several years ago, my adviser wrote an article discussing the observation that a hundred years of studying memory had not resulted in the discovery of a "law" of memory. He wrote (p. 247): When ...
6
votes
2answers
343 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
1answer
156 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 ...
3
votes
0answers
242 views

Obey any command given suddenly, as in the Jumping Frenchmen of Maine [closed]

There is behaviour I'm looking for information about, below are two examples of this behaviour, although the 2nd example is from fiction. The first example is featured on the TV show QI, "Jumping ...
9
votes
2answers
242 views

Bias by which we tend to accept vague descriptions of ourselves

There's an effective strategy employed by horoscopes and "psychics" where they say vague statements like "You like being with friends but you value your time alone"; statements that basically "cover ...
3
votes
2answers
205 views

Why do some people seem to disregard the choice of doing nothing (The Zero Choice)?

In many areas of life we have a choice between multiple options: if we are hungry and we want to go out to eat, we have a number of places to choose from (McDonalds, etc). However, we also still have ...
5
votes
0answers
101 views

What processes underly confidence ratings in cognitive decision-making?

Many experiments in cognitive psychology and other domains ask for confidence ratings (e.g., on a 0-100 scale, 100 meaning "I'm sure I experienced this stimulus"). What accounts describe how these ...
15
votes
4answers
909 views

Why are people inclined to praise or fear the unknown?

Human beings are inclined to "praise" the unknown, and are often afraid of the unknown. This inclination has led to the creation of mythology and many gods. To this date we are still carrying this ...
36
votes
1answer
2k views

By learning to read and write upside down, what did I do to myself?

If you've ever read Encyclopedia Brown books, you'll be familiar with the backwards writing in the back of the book that explains the solution to the case. When I was in my mid-late teens (I don't ...
3
votes
1answer
229 views

Has the neuro-linguistic programming visual model been scientifically tested?

According to the NLP visual model, fast flickers of the eyes in left/right and the 4 diagonal directions map to simple cues related to how a person is thinking. Thease are "visual constructed", ...
9
votes
1answer
294 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. ...
8
votes
1answer
365 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 ...
29
votes
4answers
6k views

Does evidence support Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs?

Maslow's Heirarchy of Needs (shown below) is a popular concept and is often taught in basic psychology courses, and often less objectively taught in Business and Marketing courses. A common problem ...