Psych pwpt 4 - Expanding the Approach to Examining...

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Expanding the Approach to Examining Cognition
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Early Cognitive Psychology The information processing approach Mental processing can be understood as a serial sequence of independent stages We can study cognition using simple process models : a hypothesis about the specific mental processes that take place when a particular task is performed E.g., like our task switching demonstration last time
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A Process model: Pure Counting or Numerical Identification Stimulus Answer TIME PERCEIVE PROCESS RESPONSE
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A Process model: Alternating Between the Two Rules Stimulus Answer SWITCH! TIME PERCEIVE PROCESS RESPONSE
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The Information Processing Approach Assumptions Sequential stages of processing On every trial (or every stimulus) the same stages of processing occurs to some degree . It might be easier or harder depending on the context – something was affected because of the manipulation. The stages are non-overlapping and independent One stage has to be completed in order for the next stage to begin The time for one stage to be completed does not impact other stages (the assumption of experimentally isolating one specific process) Strengths Basis in careful, systematic experimentation and therefore allows logical causal inferences Collection of simple effects assumed to be building blocks of more complex behaviors Basis for theoretical model building and predicting behavior
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Weaknesses Too simple Complex behaviors are more than the sum of its simple building blocks Maybe too artificial or sterile to explain higher-order real world activities like problem solving and decision-making Serial, independent (non-overlapping) stage processing might be unlikely Parallel processing : multiple mental processes (stages) can work simultaneously The effects of preview: E.g., Skilled typing (Salthouse, 1984) Context effects: E.g., Lexical ambiguity (Simpson, 1981); Cue validity (Posner, 1978) Important idea: Top-down (conceptual) processing: Existing context or knowledge influences earlier or more basic mental processes.
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Psych pwpt 4 - Expanding the Approach to Examining...

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