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23 Cards in this Set

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The mental activities associated with thinking, knowing, remembering, and communicating


A mental image or best example or a category. Matching new items to a prototype provides a quick and easy method for sorting items into categories (as when comparing feathered creatures to a prototypical bird, such as a robin).


Step-by-step procedures that guarantee a solution.


A simple thinking strategy that often allows us to make judgments and solve problems efficiently; usually speedier but also more error-prone than algorithms.


A sudden and often novel realization of the solution to a problem.


The ability to produce novel and valuable ideas.

Five components of creativity

Robert Sternberg - Expertise, imaginative thinking skills, venturesome personality, intrinsic motivation, creative environment.

Confirmation bias

A tendency to search for information that supports our preconceptions and to ignore or distort contradictory evidence.


The inability to see a problem from a fresh perspective.

Functional fixedness

The tendency to think of things only in terms of their usual functions; an impediment to problem solving.

Not being able to think of novel ways to use things.

Mental set

A tendency to approach a problem in one particular way, often a way that has been successful in the past.

Representativeness heuristic

Judging the likelihood of things in terms of how well they seem to represent, or match, particular prototypes; may lead us to ignore other relevant information.


Availability heuristic

Estimating the likelihood of events based on their availability in memory; if instances come readily to mind (perhaps because of vividness), we presume such events are common.

Belief perseverence

Clinging to one's initial conceptions after the basis on which they were formed has been discredited.


An effortless, immediate, automatic feeling or thought, as contrasted with explicit, conscious reasoning.


The way an issue is posed; how an issue is framed can significantly affect decisions and judgments.

95% success rate vs. 5% failure rate


The basic sets of sounds in a language. English uses 40.

b, t, a, ch . . .


The smallest units of language that contain meaning. May be words or part of a word.

Prefixes, suffixes, etc.

Babbling stage

Beginning at about 4 months, the stage of speech development in which the infant spontaneously utters various sounds at first unrelated to the household language.

Babbling resembles household language

10 months

One-word stage

The stage in speech development, from about age 1 to 2, during which a child speaks mostly in single words.

Starts at 12 months.

Two-word stage

(telegraphic speech)

Children start uttering two-word sentences, similar to old telegraphs, around 24 months. Mostly nouns and verbs, follows syntax.

"Big doggy"

Linguistic determinism

Whorf's hypothesis that language determines the way we think.