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How Thinking Works: 10 Brilliant Cognitive Psychology Studies Everyone Should Know

How Thinking Works: 10 Brilliant Cognitive Psychology Studies Everyone Should Know
How experts think, the power of framing, the miracle of attention, the weird world of cognitive biases and more… Fifty years ago there was a revolution in psychology which changed the way we think about the mind. The ‘cognitive revolution’ inspired psychologists to start thinking of the mind as a kind of organic computer, rather than as an impenetrable black box which would never be understood. This metaphor has motivated psychologists to investigate the software central to our everyday functioning, opening the way to insights into how we think, reason, learn, remember and produce language. Here are 10 classic cognitive psychology studies that have helped reveal how thinking works. 1. Without experts the human race would be sunk. The answer is in how experts think about problems, compared with novices. That’s what Chi et al. (1981) found when they compared how experts and novices represented physics problems. 2. Short-term memory is a lot shorter than many think. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.

http://www.spring.org.uk/2014/01/how-thinking-works-10-brilliant-cognitive-psychology-studies-everyone-should-know.php

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Exercise Plus Fasting May Boost Brain's Neurons Forget what you've heard about "brain food"...turns out, the best food for your brain may be none at all. New research on intermittent fasting and exercise show some surprising brain benefits of depriving yourself of calories -- at least occasionally. "We have evidence that exercise and probably intermittent fasting increase the number of mitochondria in neurons," said Mark Mattson, a neuroscientist at the National Institute on Aging in Baltimore.

Developing as Rational Persons: Viewing Our Develo Humans are capable of developing into rational beings. This is our ultimate assumption. At some level all of us want to effectively analyze and solve our problems. We want to live significant, meaningful lives.

Brain Plasticity: How Adult Born Neurons Get Wired – Neuroscience News Summary: Researchers report adult neurogenesis not only helps increase the number of cells in a neural network, it also promotes plasticity in the existing network. Additionally, they have identified the role the Bax gene plays in synaptic pruning. Source: University of Alabama at Birmingham. One goal in neurobiology is to understand how the flow of electrical signals through brain circuits gives rise to perception, action, thought, learning and memories. Linda Overstreet-Wadiche, Ph.D., and Jacques Wadiche, Ph.D., both associate professors in the University of Alabama at Birmingham Department of Neurobiology, have published their latest contribution in this effort, focused on a part of the brain that helps form memories — the dentate gyrus of the hippocampus. The dentate gyrus is one of just two areas in the brain where new neurons are continuously formed in adults.

Decision-Making and Control in the Brain Damage to the brain's frontal lobe is known to impair one's ability to think and make choices. And now scientists say they've pinpointed the different parts of this brain region that preside over reasoning, self-control and decision-making. Researchers say the data could help doctors determine what specific cognitive obstacles their patients might face after a brain injury. For the study, neuroscientists at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) examined 30 years worth of data from the University of Iowa's brain lesion patient registry and mapped brain activity in almost 350 people with lesions in their frontal lobes. They linked these maps with data on how each patient performed in certain cognitive tasks. MRI scans of a human brain show the regions significantly associated with decision-making in blue, and the regions significantly associated with behavioral control in red.

A Glance at the Brain’s Circuit Diagram A new method facilitates the mapping of connections between neurons. The human brain accomplishes its remarkable feats through the interplay of an unimaginable number of neurons that are interconnected in complex networks. A team of scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization, the University of Göttingen and the Bernstein Center for Computational Neuroscience Göttingen has now developed a method for decoding neural circuit diagrams. Using measurements of total neuronal activity, they can determine the probability that two neurons are connected with each other.

Critical Thinking in Everyday Life: 9 Strategies Most of us are not what we could be. We are less. We have great capacity. But most of it is dormant; most is undeveloped. Improvement in thinking is like improvement in basketball, in ballet, or in playing the saxophone. The Power of Overlearning When you want to learn something new, you practice. Once you get the hang of it, you can hopefully do what you learned—whether it’s parallel parking or standing backflips—on the next day, and the next. If not, you fall back to stage one and practice some more. But your brain may have a shortcut that helps you lock in learning. Instead of practicing until you’re decent at something and then taking a siesta, practicing just a little longer could be the fast track to solidifying a skill. “Overlearning” is the process of rehearsing a skill even after you no longer improve.

UCSB scientists discover how the brain encodes memories at a cellular level (Santa Barbara, Calif.) –– Scientists at UC Santa Barbara have made a major discovery in how the brain encodes memories. The finding, published in the December 24 issue of the journal Neuron, could eventually lead to the development of new drugs to aid memory. The team of scientists is the first to uncover a central process in encoding memories that occurs at the level of the synapse, where neurons connect with each other. "When we learn new things, when we store memories, there are a number of things that have to happen," said senior author Kenneth S. Science: A New Map of the Human Brain Who hasn't heard that people are either left-brained or right-brained—either analytical and logical or artistic and intuitive, based on the relative "strengths" of the brain's two hemispheres? How often do we hear someone remark about thinking with one side or the other? A flourishing industry of books, videos and self-help programs has been built on this dichotomy.

Strategy List: 35 Dimensions of Critical Thought S-1 Thinking Independently Principle: Critical thinking is independent thinking, thinking for oneself. Many of our beliefs are acquired at an early age, when we have a strong tendency to form beliefs for irrational reasons (because we want to believe, because we are praised or rewarded for believing). Critical thinkers use critical skills and insights to reveal and reject beliefs that are irrational. In forming new beliefs, critical thinkers do not passively accept the beliefs of others; rather, they try to figure things out for themselves, reject unjustified authorities, and recognize the contributions of genuine authorities.

Your brain is unique – here's how it could be used as the ultimate security password Biometrics – technology that can recognise individuals based on physical and behavioural traits such as their faces, voices or fingerprints – are becoming increasingly important to combat financial fraud and security threats. This is because traditional approaches, such as those based on PIN numbers or passwords, are proving too easily compromised. For example, Barclays has introduced TouchID, whereby customers can log onto internet banking using fingerprint scanners on mobile phones. However, this is not foolproof either – it is possible to forge such biometrics.

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