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Cognitive Bias

Redskin Psychology: The Origins of Cruel Caricatures

Wray Herbert | Posted 06.12.2014 | Science
Wray Herbert

My hometown football team has been under fire for many years for using the derogatory term "redskin" as its team mascot. As it should. Indeed, the stereotype existed long before the football team -- even before football. But where and how do such mean-spirited and distorted caricatures get started?

Wrapping a Present for the Future

Wray Herbert | Posted 06.10.2014 | Science
Wray Herbert

Maybe there is some risk in overzealously documenting our lives. There are certainly times to put that camera away and join in the fun. But these findings suggest that there may also be risk in failing to create mementos. The seemingly dull and quotidian details of our everyday lives may be the emotional treasures of the future.

Do You Have Inner Gender Bias?

Suna Senman | Posted 05.21.2014 | Women
Suna Senman

Your brain is processing many more thoughts than you are aware of. Getting beyond this cognitive bias requires taking a fresh look at yourself and the world. To dispel your own cognitive bias, objectively observe masculine and feminine qualities in their basic, organic state as the equinox.

A Time for Teachers

Paul Dunion, Ed.D., LPC | Posted 05.13.2014 | Healthy Living
Paul Dunion, Ed.D., LPC

We are in a time calling for genuine teachers. It is such a time because we are in dire need of critical lessons, which include: • How do we avoid ...

Your Mind on Social Media

Deborah R. Glasofer, Ph.D. | Posted 06.17.2014 | Healthy Living
Deborah R. Glasofer, Ph.D.

Ever post a status update on Facebook and feel distraught when no one "likes" or comments on it? Does the prospect of being misunderstood on Twitter keep you from participating in the digital dialogue?

The Psychology of a Memorable Lunch

Wray Herbert | Posted 06.16.2014 | Science
Wray Herbert

Our choices have implications, not only for how much we enjoy lunch today, but also for longer term goals like fitness and health. But how do we choose? What are the basic cognitive processes that lead from initial hunger pang to this soup or that sandwich?

The Brooding Mind: Making the Worst of Ambiguity

Wray Herbert | Posted 05.17.2014 | Science
Wray Herbert

Brooders see their own problems as debilitating, and this self-focus sabotages any real effort to make things better. It leads to all sorts of negative feelings, which in turn lead to more ruminative thinking, creating a perilous cycle of thought and emotion.

Mental Health on the Go

Wray Herbert | Posted 04.09.2014 | Science
Wray Herbert

Severe, debilitating anxiety has afflicted Scott Stossel his entire life, a life he describes in his morbidly fascinating new memoir, My Age of Anxiety. His case may be especially tormenting, but he is far from alone in this plight.

Why Do Giraffes Have Long Necks?

Wray Herbert | Posted 01.25.2014 | Science
Wray Herbert

Clearly the giraffe evolved this uncommon and helpful trait in order to reach those nourishing leaves. That's how natural selection works. If you're a 6-year-old.

The Face(s) of the GOP. Who Do You See?

Wray Herbert | Posted 12.08.2013 | Science
Wray Herbert

Can people be so biased by their political attitudes that they look out and see a different world, a world where up is down and black is white? I came across a new study this week that argues just that.

Mindfulness And Loss: The Past Is Just the Past

Wray Herbert | Posted 10.22.2013 | Science
Wray Herbert

The sunk-cost bias is the tendency to persist with an endeavor once we've made an investment of money or time or effort. A team of psychological scientists has been exploring the possibility that mindfulness meditation might help people overcome this particular kind of irrational thinking.

When the Law Is Involved, Do Notions Of Fairness Matter?

Mark Baer | Posted 09.28.2013 | Divorce
Mark Baer

When attorneys, mediators and others are involved in the process, their concepts of fairness may well differ from those of one or both of the parties and from those of the other professionals involved.

Is Tribalism Inevitable?

Rosabeth Moss Kanter | Posted 09.25.2013 | Politics
Rosabeth Moss Kanter

Human nature allows us to think our way out of blindspots. Tribalism is muted by other human creations, such as diverse communities with complex structures and more universalistic values. We call that civilization.

Cognitive Biases and Vulnerable Student Success

Karen Gross | Posted 09.23.2013 | College
Karen Gross

Our cognitive bias impacts others but also our perception of ourselves. When we become better aware, we can reduce the error rates in thinking about colleges/universities, our current and prospective students and ourselves -- for the betterment of individuals, institutions and the public good.

Is Mediation About Reaching the Same Result in a More Efficient and Economical Manner?

Mark Baer | Posted 08.31.2013 | Divorce
Mark Baer

My last article on mediation, titled "Should Divorcing Couples Who Mediate Be Talking Through Counsel?," was the first of a series of articles on medi...

Spooky Judgments: How Agents Think About Danger

Wray Herbert | Posted 08.18.2013 | Science
Wray Herbert

We hire and train intelligence agents to weigh risks and make judgments, and most of us want to believe that these assessments are sound. But how rational are the individual men and women who are making the life-and-death decisions that influence national security?

Should Lawyers Be Required to Take Continuing Education Courses on Human Mental Processes?

Mark Baer | Posted 08.18.2013 | Divorce
Mark Baer

On May 23, 2012, I gave a presentation to the members of the San Gabriel Valley Chapter of the Financial Planning Association. The topic was "Are Atto...

Uncommon Sense: Toward an RQ Test?

Wray Herbert | Posted 07.24.2013 | Science
Wray Herbert

Keith Stanovich has just begun a three-year project, funded by the John Templeton Foundation, to create the first comprehensive assessment of rational thinking -- what may someday be commonly called the RQ test.

Cognitive Biases Are Bad for Business

Dr. Jim Taylor | Posted 07.20.2013 | Business
Dr. Jim Taylor

Cognitive biases can be characterized as the tendency to make decisions and take action based on limited acquisition and/or processing of information or on self-interest, overconfidence, or attachment to past experience.

The Power of One: The Psychology of Charity

Wray Herbert | Posted 04.14.2013 | Science
Wray Herbert

Our compassion and generosity should grow as the number of poor and suffering multiplies, but the opposite seems to occur. Some numbers are just too big and abstract to grasp, so they lose their power.

When Patients Do Nothing: Illness and Inertia

Wray Herbert | Posted 04.08.2013 | Science
Wray Herbert

One of the most daunting public health challenges is getting people to take care of themselves in the most basic ways.

Budgets and Biases: Summing Up American Values

Wray Herbert | Posted 04.07.2013 | Science
Wray Herbert

Psychological scientists Daniel Ames and Susan Fiske are reporting evidence that our judgments of harm may be badly distorted by deeply-rooted cognitive biases that operate out of our awareness. Specifically, we may be prone to exaggerate damage when we perceive it as deliberate and blameworthy.

Bridge the Fiscal Cliff Through Brain Science

David Rock | Posted 01.15.2013 | Science
David Rock

If we are to avoid the so-called fiscal cliff arriving in 2013, President Obama could benefit from understanding what brain research tells us about building coalitions and finding agreement with people we perceive as being in our "out-group."

Strange New Study Links Muscle Strength, Political Views

The Huffington Post | Jacqueline Howard | Posted 10.23.2012 | Science

Are political views a matter of muscles? A new paper published online in the journal Psychological Science suggests that muscular strength can be ...

Why Don't Women Raise Their Hands More?

Rachel Dempsey | Posted 11.17.2012 | Women
Rachel Dempsey

My law school class is somewhere around 50% women. So why don't us ladies just get over it and speak up?