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The Science of Everyday Thinking

Course Description:

We will explore everyday thinking: why people believe weird things, how we form and change our opinions, why our expectations skew our judgments, and how we can make better decisions. We discuss and debate topics such as medical diagnosis, paranormal phenomena, placebos, miracles, and more. You will learn how to evaluate claims, make sense of evidence, and understand why we so often make irrational choices. You will begin to rely on slow, effortful, deliberative, analytic, and logical thinking rather than fast, automatic, instinctive, emotional, and stereotypical thinking. The course provides tools for how to think independently, how to be skeptical, and how to value data over personal experience. We will examine the mental shortcuts and rules-of-thumb that people use and misuse, and apply this knowledge to everyday situations to help make better decisions.

  • Instructor(s) Jason Tangen, Matthew Thompson
  • University
  • Provider
  • Start Date 02/Mar/2014
  • Duration Always Available
  • Main Language English
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