Learn about common heuristics, biases, and other factors that affect our decisions. Created by Carole Yue.
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- what does feminist mean?(2 votes)
- I understand framing as presented, but the example seems tainted to me, or should I say the study.
I think if I were asked to decide between those things on a survey, like a sizable chunk of the population, I would quickly realize that for both examples the expected value was the same and so that there was no choice to make.
And then I would flip a coin if I had one; or answer really quickly without giving a hoot about your survey.
I'm of the mind that by simply adding a life-saved to one column in the first example, and then adding a death to one column in the second example, the study would be better.
Then it seems like we'd only be testing who's into math, so maybe not.
It continues to frustrate me, the example in this video. It sorta talks about risk and loss aversion, but not really.
I think the study with saying "old person words" and "slow" and stuff and then people left the study walking slower than the control group -- a much better example.(3 votes)
- So, is it fair to say that executive function disorder is due to some sort of chemical (or physical) problem in the frontal lobe?(3 votes)
- Damage to the frontal lobe, from brain injury for example, can lead to difficulties with executive functioning and often does. Indeed, executive functions used to be called frontal lobe functions. This is now less often the case. There is evidence to suggest that the frontal lobes are largely necessary but probably insufficient for executive functioning.
Alvarez and Emory reviewed and analyzed a whole collection of studies on the topic in 2006. They found "Results reveal mixed evidence that does not support a one-to-one relationship between executive functions and frontal lobe activity", and that "results indicated the sensitivity, but not specificity, of [measures of executive functioning] to frontal lobe functioning. In other words, both frontal and non-frontal brain regions are necessary for intact executive functions." Why? "multiple executive function subprocesses (e.g., working memory, inhibition, and selective attention) work in conjunction to solve complex problems and execute complicated decisions. Thus, participation of the frontal lobes in virtually any 'executive process' is probably a necessary, but largely insufficient, requirement"
Dysexecutive syndrome is a contemporary term used in place of 'frontal lobe syndrome'. It describes difficulties with aspects of functioning like planning, abstract thought, flexible thinking/'thinking outside the box', and cognitive control of behaviour than can occur after injury or damage to the brain. Areas other than the frontal lobe may be involved, hence the focus on describing the phenomena in terms of cognitive functioning, rather than neuroanatomy (though perhaps this may vary depending on the field of knowledge).
Dysexecutive syndrome as a term was coined by Alan Baddeley, whose work on executive function was interesting. He devised a theory of working memory which included a central executive component as a director of other mental functions (in this case short term memory processes). There are many other theories of executive functioning, e.g. the supervisory attentional system (SAS).(1 vote)
- Will confirmation bias be more prominent in children during the concrete operational stage (of the piaget's stages of cognitive development)?(2 votes)
- when our gut is telling us one thing shouldn't we trust our gut or our mind?(1 vote)
- Such an interesting question. I would say trust your gut (given that you define gut as your "conscience" superego) because your mind (ego) can lead you astray.(2 votes)
- Are prototypes similar to stereotypes?(1 vote)
- Yes. Prototype just means a typical example of something and stereotype means something conforming to a pattern. Typically, stereotype is used with a more negative connotation.(2 votes)
- For framing effects, I picked B for the first frame, was less sure for the second frame because for me the first frame was like "100% bad outcome vs. 33% good outcome", whereas the second frame was like "100% bad outcome vs. 67% worse outcome"(1 vote)
- At2:44, Carole Yue talks about instincts. What is the role of "gut instincts"? How about the subconscious?(1 vote)
- [Lecturer] What do you think is more likely, someone dying from a shark attack, or someone dying from a fireworks accident? To answer that question, you have to make a decision. In decision making, we make a judgment about the desirability or in this case the probability of some outcome. If you're like most people, you used a heuristic or mental shortcut to make that decision. You may have thought about all the instances in which you've read about shark attacks in the news versus fatal accidents involving fireworks. That method is called the availability heuristic. You're using examples that readily come to mind or are easily available in your memory. Most of the time that's a very helpful shortcut, but unfortunately our easily memorable experiences don't always match the real state of the world. In this case, even though you've probably read more stories about shark attacks, the risk of dying from one is about one in 3.7 million whereas the risk of dying from a fireworks accident is about one in 340,000. A much higher risk, but usually much less publicized. Another heuristic that can lead us astray in decision making is the representativeness heuristic. In this case, we judge the probability of an event based on our existing prototype, or general concept of what is typical. For example, say I tell you that a person named Linda is 30 years old, single, outspoken, and very bright. She majored in philosophy and as a student, she participated in anti-nuclear demonstrations and organizations that fought discrimination. Now which do you think is more likely? That Linda is a bankteller, or that Linda is a feminist bankteller? If you're like most people, you answered that she is more likely to be a feminist bank teller. Even if you don't know any feminists, or even anyone who's exactly like our imaginary Linda, she fits your prototype of how a feminist would act. She is representative of a feminist. And most of the time, a representativeness heuristic can help us make quick judgments, however in this case it leads us to something called a conjunction fallacy, which is when people think that the co-occurrence of two instances, being a feminist and being a bankteller, is more likely than a single one, just being a bankteller. 'Cause statistically speaking, there are a lot more banktellers than there are feminist banktellers. So it's actually more likely that she's just a bankteller even though your instincts are telling you otherwise. Now be careful not to get confused between availability and representativeness. When using the availability heuristic, you're thinking of actual memories that can come to your mind that are available in your head. With representativeness, you're not necessarily thinking of exact memories, you're thinking of a prototype of this idea. Okay, so we've talked about some heuristics that guide our decision making processes, so now let's talk about some biases that prevent us from making correct decisions, or from changing our decisions once they're made. One bias is overconfidence which is just our tendency to be more confident than correct. You may have experienced this going into a test when you thought you'd ace it, but then you didn't know a lot of the information. And this overconfidence could be due to fluency while you're studying, or the ease of processing. In other words, things might have felt really easy when you were studying in your room, but if you never tried to test yourself to see if you really knew the answers, then you might overestimate your ability to produce answers when you needed to. You may have also experienced overconfidence if you've ever been in an argument when you're positive you're right until someone shows proof that you're not. If you don't change your mind after you get this new information though, then you're falling prey to the bias of belief perseverance. And this happens a lot around election time. Whenever people hear something they don't like about their favorite candidate, they often ignore it or rationalize it away. Though this bias is slightly different than something called confirmation bias which is when you actively seek out only the information that confirms your existing beliefs. So in our election example, you would be exhibiting confirmation bias if you only read stories that talked about how wonderful your favorite candidate is, but you would be exhibiting belief perseverance if you learned about, but then ignored, information that you didn't like about your candidate. Another factor that can affect decision making is framing, which is just how you present the decision. For example, suppose I tell you there is a disease about to strike the population that will kill 600 people. However, there are two options for programs to combat this disease. If you pick option A, then there's a 100% chance that exactly 200 people will be saved. If you pick option B, there's a 1/3 chance that all 600 people will be saved, and a 2/3 chance that nobody will be saved. Which do you want to pick? Okay now try this one. The same disease is coming through and you again have two options. If you pick option A, then there's a 100% chance that exactly 400 people will die. If you pick option B, then there is a 1/3 chance that no one will die, and a 2/3 chance that 600 people will die. Now which option do you want to pick? If you're like most people, when the decision is framed in terms of how many people will be saved, you're more likely to pick option A, save 200 people for sure. But when the decision is framed in terms of how many people will die, you're more likely to pick option B to avoid killing 400 people for sure. Even though saving 200 people is the exact same thing as letting 400 people die in this example, it seems better to pick that option when it's framed or presented in terms of how many people will be saved. Likewise, it seems better to pick an option that offers a chance of no people dying rather than to risk not saving some people. So hopefully this doesn't make you paranoid, but our decisions are not quite as black and white or even as consistent as we think they are. So next time you have to judge something, try to take a step back and consider all the factors that could be influencing your decision.