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Unformatted text preview: Intro to Psychology Chapter 1 Psychology, Pseudoscience, and Popular Opinion • Some forms of psychobabble play on the appeal of technology. • Unsupported popular opinion vs. findings based on research evidence. • Beliefs promoted in popular culture are based on personal experience or “common sense” • Astrologers and psychics influence a wide range of people but cannot be scientifically supported. • Psychobabble exists because it gives people a sense of control and predictability. • Our brain looks for patterns even when patterns may not exist. • Psychobabble agrees with our beliefs and prejudices and scientific psychology challenges them. Thinking Critically and Creatively About Psychology • Critical thinking: the ability and willingness to assess claims and make objective judgments on the basis of well-supported reasons and evidence rather than emotion or anecdote. • If your opinion ignores reality it is not equal to any other. • Ask Questions Be Willing To Wonder o Trigger mechanism for creative thinking is curiosity. • Define Your Terms o Once a general question is generated, a solid, concrete, more specific questions needs to be asked in order to get answers. Happy – euphoric, content with life, etc. • Examine the Evidence o Reliability of the source is important. • Analyze Assumptions and Biases o Assumptions are beliefs that are taken for granted. o A Bias is when an assumption keeps us from analyzing the evidence objectively. • Avoid Emotional Reasoning o Emotional Reactions and beliefs feel right and natural and provide a person with a strong conviction. o Disagreeing is okay, but it should be because the evidence is unpersuasive. • Don’t Oversimplify o Look beyond the obvious, resist easy generalizations, and reject eitheror thinking. • Consider Other Interpretations o Generate as many possible interpretations before settling on the most likely one. • Tolerate Uncertainty o Sometimes there is little or no evidence to examine permitting only tentative conclusions. ...
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This note was uploaded on 03/02/2011 for the course PSYCH 001 taught by Professor Benbassi during the Fall '08 term at GWU.
- Fall '08