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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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, ...
23
votes
1answer
164k views

How valid is Lumosity's Brain Performance Index and what normative information is available?

Background There is a test called Lumosity's Brain Performance Index. A sample profile of scores might be: ...
9
votes
1answer
205 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 ...
18
votes
3answers
3k views

Why do you sometimes write down one word while actually intending to write another?

I've caught myself writing (typing) "possible" instead of "possibly" a few times over the past few days, while I do intend to write "possibly". Only upon rereading the sentence I notice my mistake. ...
14
votes
1answer
357 views

Is there psychoactive music?

Listen to this music for X minutes to observe Y result. Is there something like that that has been demonstrated to work for general public? The only example of an experiment that is similar that ...
1
vote
1answer
86 views

Brainwave audio recordings and beta waves: how do they affect positivity?

I know a little bit about negative and positive energies of human bodies and how it all works. Recently, on Facebook, I saw an ad promoting some sort of audio recording and that it has something to do ...
14
votes
1answer
884 views

How is a young child able to learn language so easily?

It's a well known fact that the earlier children are exposed to languages the better, as young children have a better ability to learn new languages than adults. Why is this? At what age does a ...
35
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 ...
20
votes
5answers
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 ...
15
votes
2answers
539 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
481 views

Why do people suddenly look back if you look at them for a while?

You possibly are familiar with the following situation, I do not know if this is a researched phenomena or not however. You look straight at somebody for some time and suddenly, even though he or she ...
11
votes
5answers
788 views

Is it possible to think in a second language?

Those who have learned a second language are guaranteed to consciously think of words and their corresponding meaning in your native language or vice versa. This is common with more "complex" ...
-3
votes
1answer
70 views

Could an ethic stating that everyone should care about himself go into justifying exploitment?

Let's assume that one man has the following belief: 1) Everyone has to take care of himself; it's not mandatory for people to be nice and good, it's mandatory to defend ourselves from others and to ...
5
votes
1answer
72 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
241 views

Comprehensive list of cognitive techniques in CBT

I'm not a cognitive science student, but I'm interested in CBT (Cognitive Behavior Therapy) and I'm using it to overcome some of the problems I have. However, I have difficulty in finding resources ...
2
votes
1answer
82 views

How to refer to the phenomenon of people only absorbing evidence which confirms their beliefs?

I knew a psychologist who was calling it self-referentiality. People are always trying to see only the sentence which confirm their beliefs. What's the correct name for this?
0
votes
1answer
87 views

What are ways to explore metamathematics from a cognitive science/neuroscience lens?

What are ways to explore metamathematics from a cognitive science/neuroscience lens to understand the evolution of mathematics based on structural and perceptual processing biases introduced due to ...
41
votes
3answers
4k views

Does writing something down help memorize it?

This is a question inspired by this recent question on the Chinese Language & Usage website. Someone asked why they needed to learn how to write Chinese characters, since today we mostly use ...
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 ...
27
votes
4answers
5k 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 ...
15
votes
4answers
833 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 ...
13
votes
2answers
283 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 ...
12
votes
4answers
1k views

Why are most people not persuaded by rational arguments?

The sentence could look as a provocation for many people, but the thoughts are not always rational and linear. But why this happens? Is it possible to give a short answer? "Counter to what you might ...
25
votes
4answers
1k views

Is multitasking a myth?

Often, the term 'multitasking' is applied to very busy and 'wired' people. There is an adage that women multitask better than men. My question is, do we actually multitask? If so, what are the ...
10
votes
1answer
115 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 ...
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
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 ...
5
votes
1answer
381 views

What positive writing exercises improve happiness?

Writing seems like a perfect medium for expressing ones problems but can it also be used to improve happiness somehow? Maybe through some sort of creative writing exercises that focus on positive ...
8
votes
0answers
377 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
1answer
370 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 ...
6
votes
1answer
349 views

Can hypomania be induced by just thinking quickly and variably?

Emily Pronin and Daniel Wegner have shown that fast and variable thinking induces positive affect. This is independent of thought content. Sheri Johnson has noted that the key things that might start ...
6
votes
2answers
306 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 ...
5
votes
3answers
111 views

Is there a term for a person who moves from one field of expertise to a new field and has an inflated belief in their competence in the new field?

Person A has led a successful career and is very well renowned in field A. Later in life, person A moves to field B, a field they're curious about but have very little experience in. Person A ...
3
votes
0answers
234 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 ...
10
votes
1answer
208 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 ...
9
votes
1answer
277 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. ...
5
votes
1answer
75 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 ...
4
votes
0answers
69 views

Does data support Domhoff's neurocognitive theory of dreams?

Background: A friend described consistent feelings and themes during a dream. It is my understanding that the contents of our dreams are our subconscious/unconscious/preconscious processing stimuli ...
2
votes
0answers
100 views

Does mental rigidity cause psychological problems?

Is there a correlation between mental disorders and mental rigidity? I would suspect that people that have very strong beliefs and never question them might become dysfunctional if the beliefs are ...
2
votes
2answers
117 views

What experiment can be devised to find out whether I am awake or in sleep

As he saw; he could see a packed court and his ministers coming up to him for advice and then he felt his eyelids shutting down...We he opened them he found sitting at a street corner asking for ...
0
votes
1answer
56 views

Which personality traits relate to prosocial values?

Which personality traits are strong in people with values such as: kindness humility sympathy empathy abnegation church-professed values solidarity love for others forgiving the other defending ...
0
votes
3answers
195 views

What's the major difference between mind and brain?

I am preparing a presentation on "Mind Reading Computer", and all articles that I came across were focused on reading interpretations from brain through sensors. Articles like this clearly show a ...
-1
votes
1answer
66 views

Which is the scientific name of stubbornness?

Some people are stubborn, with strong, absolute beliefs, and it's really hard to change the ideas. They tend to see just the evidence that confirms their ideas. What is the scientific name of this ...
10
votes
1answer
203 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 ...
6
votes
1answer
189 views

Name of the bias where someone really needs something after they find out it exists

I'm looking for the name of the cognitive bias that is expressed in the following story. A fellow coworker was instrumental in getting a 75 gallon fish tank installed in the lobby of the company that ...
6
votes
4answers
443 views

Aesthetic preference for even or odd numbers

In my experience most people prefer the appearance of even numbers or numbers divisible by 5. Is there any research which proves or disproves my theory? Is it all about symmetry? I expect that ...
5
votes
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 ...
5
votes
1answer
925 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, ...
5
votes
1answer
890 views

Effect of Physical Exercise on Intelligence/IQ

I am interested in empirical research relevant to answering the following questions: What is the effect of physical exercise on IQ/intelligence? Does any such effect vary by type of exercise? e.g. ...
4
votes
1answer
93 views

Are people more likely to pick the odd one out?

I was wondering if there has been any research to suggest that when given a list of options to choose from, people are more likely to pick an option if it looks different to the other options? My ...