13
votes
1answer
564 views

What stimulus features determine the psychophysical power law exponent?

Following the work of Stanley Stevens, psychophysical functions of stimulus intensity are commonly assumed to follow power laws, as illustrated below: This appears to be true for a wide variety of ...
13
votes
2answers
490 views

Does intelligence cause greater alcohol consumption?

I just stumbled on a blog post that asserts that more intelligent people drink more than less intelligent people. The author writes: Controlling for a large number of demographic variables, such ...
13
votes
2answers
318 views

What concepts of perception should designers be aware of when designing?

Visual perception is a huge topic, much of which is relevant to the work of a designer. I have identified topics in visual memory, visual cognition and colour perception that are relevant, and I'm ...
12
votes
1answer
191 views

What defines the easiest time to get out of bed in the morning for humans?

I'm interested in sleep research, and sometimes in conversations with people the following idea gets discussed: "A person becomes aware at a certain time in the morning and feel great(while still in ...
11
votes
2answers
254 views

How can the success of Bayesian models be reconciled with demonstrations of heuristic and biased reasoning?

In recent years, Bayesian models of cognition have been used - with considerable success - to explain human reasoning in a variety of inferential tasks (Chater, Tenenbaum, & Yuille, 2006). These ...
11
votes
1answer
225 views

How do humans control saccades?

I've gathered the standard rational for a visual system utilizing saccades from perception textbooks: the neural cost of processing an entire scene at a high level of detail would be prohibitive, but ...
10
votes
2answers
3k views

How is fasting related to insomnia?

Yesterday I started a new diet using intermittent fasting. For this reason I only ate one meal all day. I was pretty surprised how well I passed that day: I studied a lot, did some sports and ...
10
votes
1answer
126 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 ...
10
votes
0answers
420 views

Modern treatments of Alan Turing's B-type neural networks

In the cognitive sciences Alan Turing is best known for launching AI with his Computing machinery and intelligence (1950). However, this was not his first contribution to the cognitive sciences, in ...
10
votes
2answers
152 views

Measuring the adoption of norms

I'm trying to make a survey and I'm having trouble to find a scale to measure the adoption of norms. The people who fill in the survey have to think about a situation in which they were ashamed. For ...
10
votes
3answers
228 views

Is there a random walk theory that can account for situations with more than two choices?

In the article "Two-stage Dynamic Signal Detection: A Theory of Choice, Decision Time, and Confidence" from 2010 by Pleskac and Busemeyer, a random walk model is presented for situations where a ...
9
votes
1answer
670 views

Are there emotions that only some people can feel?

Presumably, there are emotions that almost any person can feel, such as happiness, sadness, guilt, and embarrassment. But are there emotions that only a small fraction of the population can feel? ...
9
votes
2answers
701 views

In what ways can neurons fire randomly?

When developing a model of a biologically-plausible neural network, it is important to know all the circumstances under which neurons can fire. But, I am limiting this question to random firing. In ...
9
votes
1answer
328 views

Are there sex differences in inter-rater consistency of attractiveness ratings of opposite-sex faces?

Is there any research that assesses whether males or females judge faces of the opposite sex with a greater internal consistency? That is, is the standard deviation of attraction ratings for a ...
8
votes
1answer
245 views

How are people able to wake themselves up after a pre-specified amount of time?

Auto-suggestion seems to work. Several people I know seem to be able to tell themselves "I'll wake up after 'N' hours/minutes", and do so within a minute or two of that duration. I thought for a ...
8
votes
2answers
104 views

Does not consistently providing a reward strengthen operant conditioning?

When learning about Operant Conditioning, I remember being taught that not consistently rewarding the desired behavior could (seemingly counterintuitively) actually increase the strength of learning ...
7
votes
0answers
175 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 ...
7
votes
3answers
174 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 ...
7
votes
1answer
133 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
346 views

Do characters in a dream have their own separate thoughts or identity?

I am very curious as to if any research has been done in this area, or if such a question even can be researched given the current tools and methods available to cognitive scientists. When one dreams, ...
6
votes
1answer
142 views

Can learning styles be changed?

Fleming's model of learning suggests 3 types of learners : Visual: Learns by visually taking screenshots of data or by remembering pictures/scenes etc. Auditory: Learns by hearing; can be by hearing ...
5
votes
1answer
150 views

The mind as a state of matter or physical system?

What examples of attempts to formalize a principled physical basis for consciousness and/or a general theory of the mind exist? I read a fascinating ArXiV preprint last year called Consciousness as a ...
5
votes
2answers
160 views

Is perfectionism related to OCD?

Is it right to say that a really strong attitude and stubbornness to do something is really similar to an obsession? I'll try to explain better what I mean. Let's take a really good developer or a ...
5
votes
2answers
116 views

What correlation is there between breath control and personal self confidence?

In yoga, the instructor mentioned that controlled deep breathing can increase self-confidence. (Next time, I will ask him why he believes that but I doubt he has any references...) Furthermore, ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

Does IQ affect learning speed?

Supposedly, people of higher levels of intelligence do learn faster than people of lower levels of it. But this is an awfully coarse observation, and different people can learn at drastically ...
4
votes
3answers
338 views

How do personality tests work that require you to choose one of two statement that applies most to you?

There are different kinds of psychometric tests, I think the numerical and verbal ones are fair enough, I can see their usefulness. However, I cannot understand how the 'soft' psychometric tests work ...
1
vote
2answers
122 views

What books should I study to have a decent understanding of psychology?

Background: I am a student currently doing my undergraduate degree (Electrical and Electronics, if it interests anyone). I am very much interested in studying psychology. I have read quite a bit on ...
1
vote
1answer
271 views

How does cognitive science explain the origins of intuition and intelligence, that accurately describes the laws of nature?

What is the origin of non-incremental, revolutionary intuition and intelligence? For example, a human mind like Albert Einstein's can "come up" with revolutionary ideas and theories that correctly ...
0
votes
1answer
223 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 ...
14
votes
1answer
159 views

How is the size of a video related to its perceived quality?

Video is often presented at different sizes. On the Internet, many websites provide quite a few size settings. In the store, you can buy TVs of many different sizes. In both cases, it's the same ...
12
votes
3answers
215 views

Can we be conscious of our dreams?

During the day time, we are conscious of our surroundings and the brain does its work. During sleep, we are not conscious. We have dreams. But the brain continues to function. After we awake ...
11
votes
1answer
161 views

Food sharing and mutual aid among the homeless

Since the time of Peter Kropotkin, it's been observed and theorized that cooperation and mutual aid are more common in austere environments. A classic biological example would be slime mold ...
11
votes
2answers
463 views

Is it possible to quantify cognitive bias?

We know that bias exists, and that it affects our judgment and perception. This effect has to do with user's experience in life. That experience is taken care of by the brain, and if you counter a ...
11
votes
1answer
258 views

Is dissociative identity disorder a medical condition or artifact of psychotherapy?

The popular media has offered such examples as "Eve" (based on Chris Costner-Sizemore) and "Sybil" (based on Shirley Ardell Mason) as sufferers of dissociative identity disorder (at one point known as ...
10
votes
1answer
4k views

Are there benefits to learning to write with your non-dominant hand?

There are some articles on the web that recommend learning to write with your non-dominant hand to get in touch with your inner child or a higher power, increase your creativity and be more ...
10
votes
1answer
794 views

How to measure group differences incorporating reaction time / accuracy trade-off?

In a psychological experiment I am measuring subjects' reaction time as well as their error rate. Now I would like to compare two groups (males & females). There might be a bias in the sense that ...
10
votes
3answers
350 views

What is the term for a psychological effect which does not have a neurobiological/genetic basis?

When a psychological condition is the result of irregular brain structures or neurotransmitter imbalances we say the condition has a neurobiological basis; this is analogous to the classic Nature in ...
9
votes
3answers
395 views

Why do teenagers take the internet and cyberbullying so seriously?

Background: I saw this post on the daily Mirror: A girl committed suicide because some users bullied her on ask.fm. I signed up to see what that site is, and it was some Q&A site. So she committed ...
9
votes
1answer
210 views

What is understood about interactions between personality types or traits?

There are several psychological tests based on Jungian typology (e.g., MBTI, Insights & DISC) which extrapolate findings about personality into how those types interact (e.g., interaction styles). ...
9
votes
1answer
232 views

Is religiousness a genetically heritable feature?

I know that parent beliefs have very strong influence on child, but is it possible that genetic factor also play a role? I doubt that the content of any religion could be heritable through genes nor ...
8
votes
2answers
265 views

Does perception have a “frame rate”?

Are the objects of visual perception processes divisible into individual, still frames, like video is? If so: Are the perceptions from different senses synced to the same frequency? Are these ...
8
votes
4answers
5k views

At what age are women perceived to be most attractive?

Someone once quoted a research at me: Men were shown photographs of female body parts and asked to judge the attractiveness. The result was that men (of all ages) found 14 year old females the most ...
8
votes
1answer
353 views

How does the personality of a successful leader influence the development of his children?

Successful leadership appears to depend on the personality of the leader. Judge et al. (2002) found the following correlations with the "big five" personality factors in a meta-analysis: ...
8
votes
1answer
143 views

How do the correlations between Big 5 personality change in studies examining “faking bad”?

I have conducted several studies that get participants to complete the IPIP personality test while role play going for a job. A common finding is that the average correlation (i.e., $\bar{r}$ between ...
8
votes
1answer
154 views

Do the motivations and fears behind Enneagram have any scientific reasoning?

Background The Enneagram personality typing system defines set of motivations and basic fears for its nine personality types among people. The system seems to be aimed at personal development of a ...
8
votes
0answers
448 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 ...
8
votes
1answer
810 views

Do high heels increase female attractiveness in men only through indirect means?

It seems widely accepted that, overall, men tend to find women in high heels more attractive. (There will, of course, be many exceptions to this rule.) "High heels may well be the most potent ...
8
votes
1answer
115 views

What is the role of traveling waves in circuit formation during cortical development?

Propagating waves of activity have been characterized in various regions of the brain such as the visual cortex (Nauhaus et al., 2012). Recently they have been reported for the first time to occur ...
7
votes
2answers
84 views

Could neuroscientific knowledge and techiques be used to optimise peoples' education and learning?

Expanding upon this, I have two ideas behind this question - 1) that current knowledge of the brain and its workings (biochemically, biomechanically, physiologically etc) is in its infancy and that we ...
7
votes
2answers
248 views

How do SSRIs work?

I've found a reasonable explanation on Wikipedia... SSRIs are believed to increase the extracellular level of the neurotransmitter serotonin by inhibiting its reuptake into the presynaptic cell, ...

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