psy2_lec2_scientificmethod - Psychology and the Scientific...

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Psychology and the Scientific Method Psychology is “the scientific study of behavior and mental processes.”
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Critical thinking s What did you used to believe? s Why don’t you believe it anymore? s Humans used to believe: b The sun goes around the earth b The world was flat b There were witches in Salem s What is critical thinking?
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Critical thinking and science s Rule 1: Open-mindedness: anything’s possible b Overconfidence is a human trait: s “Heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible.” Lord Kelvin (physicist), 1895 b The Wright brothers flew a plane in 1903 s “There is no reason for anyone to have a computer in their home.” President of the Digital Equipment Co., 1977 b I feel 98% certain that: b The area of the US is between ___ and ___ square miles. b The number of nuclear plants in the world in 2002 was between ___ and ___. b The number of female engineers in the US in 2002 was between ___ and ___.
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Critical thinking and science s Rule 2: Skepticism: question everything b “Absence makes the heart grow fonder” s “Out of sight, out of mind” s Use your intuition, but don’t assume it’s correct s Hindsight bias b “I could’ve guessed that” b An addition problem b Folding paper s Common sense can fail us
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Critical thinking and science s Rule 3: Evidence: testable predictions b Let’s test astrology and the zodiac A Sensitive Nurturing Compassionate Cautious Tactful Secretive Imaginative Shy B Loyal Patient Conservative Stubborn Stable Self-indulgent Possessive C Intellectual Versatile Clever Curious Irritable
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This note was uploaded on 04/02/2010 for the course PSYCH 2 taught by Professor Don'tremember during the Spring '04 term at University of California, Berkeley.

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psy2_lec2_scientificmethod - Psychology and the Scientific...

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