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53 Cards in this Set

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  • Back


the mental manipulation of representations of information (of objects we encounter)


mental activity that includes thinking and the understanding that result from thinking

analogical representations

mental representations that have some of the physical characteristics of objects; they are analogous to the objects

-images of the object

symbolic representations

abstract mental representations and do not have relationships to the objects

-correspond with words (written representation)


a category

-mental representation that groups or categorizes objects, events, or relations around common themes

defining attribution model

a way of thinking about concepts: a category is characterized by a list of features that determine if an object is a member of the category

two types of representations involved in thinking

1. analogical representations: representations that have some physical characteristics of objects

-correspond to images

2. symbolic representations: abstract, do not have relationship to the objects

-correspond to words

*both work together to form the basis of human thought, intelligence, and the ability to solve the complex problems of everyday life

prototype model

-some items within a group or class are more representative (best examples) of that category than are other items within that group or class

-example of a "best example" in instruments category--guitar

exemplar model

a way of thinking about concepts: all members of a category are examples

-together they form the concept and determine category membership


cognitive structures that help us perceive, organize, and process info

-as we move through various real world settings we act appropriately by drawing on knowledge of what objects, behaviors, and events apply to each setting


cognitive schemas that allow for easy, fast processing of info about people based on their membership in certain groups

gender roles

prescribed behaviors for females and males

-represent a type of schema that operates at the unconscious level

-follow without even realizing we are doing so

reasons we employ schemas

1. common situations have consistent attributes

ex: libraries are quiet and contain books

2. people have specific roles within situational contexts

ex: librarians behave differently in a library than a reader does


one type of schema

-helps us understand the sequence of events in certain situations

-directs behavior over time within a situation

ex: going to movies

-dictate appropriate behaviors and the sequence in which they are likely to occur


use info you believe is true to determine if a conclusion is valid

decision making

attempting to select the best alternative among several options

problem solving

finding a way around an obstacle to reach a goal

deductive reasoning

using general rules to draw conclusions about specific instances

inductive reasoning

using specific instances to draw conclusions about general rules


-in examining how people make everyday decisions, Tversky and Kahneman identified several common of these

-refers to the mental shortcuts (rules of thumb, informal guidelines) that we typically use to make decisions

-used to reduce the amount of thinking


a procedure that will always yield the correct answer--if followed correctly


how info is presented can alter how people perceive it

-use this to emphasize potential losses or potential gains to influence decision making

mental age

determined by comparing the child's test score with avg score for children of each chronological age

intelligence quotient (IQ)

-developed by Wilhelm Sterm

-computed by dividing child's estimated mental age by child's chronological age them multiplying result by 100


ability to use knowledge to reason, make decisions, make sense of events, solve problems, understand complex ideas, learn quickly, and adapt to the environmental challenges

*individuals differ in this just like physically and in personality

psychometric approach

-Alfred Binet: measured child's vocab, memory, skill with numbers and other mental abilities

-this approach to intelligence focuses on how people perform on standardized achievement tests

-what do people know? how can they solve problems?


-psychometric tests focus on this

-asses people's current levels of skills and of knowledge


-psychometric tests can focus on this

-seek to predict what tasks, and perhaps even what jobs, people will be good at in the future

Binet-Simon Intelligence Scale

-Binet and his assistant Theodore Simon developed first test to assess intelligence:

-method measured: child's vocab, memory, skill with numbers and other mental abilities

-how child performed on average across diff components indicates his or her overall level of intelligence

Alfred Binet

-wanted to identify children who needed extra attention in French school system

-thought intelligence was best understood through high level mental processes

-developed first method of assessing intelligence

Binet-Simon Intelligence Scale

*found that scores on his test consistent with teacher's believes about child's abilities and with grades

Stanford Revision of Binet-Simon Scale

-modified Binet-Simon and established normative scores for American kids

-in 1919: remains the most widely used test for children in the US

Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS)

-revision of Binet-Simon Scale in 2003 so it could be used to test adults

-2008 version consists of two parts consisting of several tasks

-verbal part: measures aspects such as comprehension, vocal, general knowledge

-performance part: measures nonverbal tasks such as arranging pictures in proper order, assembling parts to make a whole object, identifying a picture's missing features

adult IQ

-measured in comparison with average adults and not adults of different ages

normal distribution

-average IQ is set at 100 today

-this is the "bell curve" that forms when viewing at IQ scores across large groups of people

-peak of curve is the average--today is 100

-more people are close to average, fewer on either extreme of score range

are intelligence tests valid?

YES, they tend to perform reasonably well

-overall evidence indicates that IQ is a fairly good predictor of life outcomes measured by intelligence (doing well in school, succeeding in complex careers)

Miller Analogy Test

-widely used for admissions decisions into graduate schools as well as hiring in many work settings

-results predicted individual's productivity, creativity, job performance in workplace

*suggests modest correlation between IQ and: work performance, income, jobs requiring complex skills


-percentage of the variation in performance at either school or work that IQ scores predict

-additional factors contribute to individual success as well--NOT JUST IQ SCORE/INTELLIGENCE

culture bias

-one criticism of intelligence tests

-people can be penalized for belonging to certain cultures and not having the specific background knowledge required


the tendency to think about complex traits as though they have a single cause and objective reality

-example: complex concept of intelligence

general intelligence (g)

the idea that one general factor underlies intelligence

-providing a single IQ score reflects the idea that one general factor underlies intelligence

fluid intelligence

intelligence that reflects the ability to process info, particularly in novel or complex circumstance

crystallized intelligence

intelligence that reflects both the knowledge one acquires through experience and the ability to use that knowledge

multiple intelligence

idea that there are different types of intelligence that are independent of one another

analytical intelligence

being good at problem solving

creative intelligence

involves the ability to gain insight and solve novel problems

-to think in new and interesting ways

emotional intelligence (EI)

form of social intelligence that emphasizes the abilities to manage, recognize, and understand emotions and use emotions to guide appropriate thought and action

inspection time tests

-supports a relation between general intelligence and speed of mental processing

-stimulus is presented then covered up to measure how much viewing time it takes a particular person to answer a question about the stimulus

-ppl need LITTLE time: tend to score HIGHER on psychometric tests of intelligence

*measuring electrical activity of brains in response to the presentation of the stim--shows highly intelligent ppl's brains work faster*

working memory

active processing system that holds info for use in activities such as reasoning, comprehension, problem solving

word span task

participant listens to a short list of words and then repeats words in order

secondary processing task

participant has to solve simple mathematical operations at same time words are presented then person has to repeat words in order they were presented


person with minimal intellectual capacities in most domains but at a very early age shows an exceptional ability related to math, music, arts

-combo of prodigious memory and inability to learn seemingly basic tasks--GREAT MYSTERY

behavioral genetics

study of the genetic basis of behaviors and traits like intelligence

-use twin and adoption studies to estimate the extent to which particular traits are heritable

-tries to determine the portion of particular traits variance that can be attributed to genes

stereotype threat

apprehension about confirming negative stereotypes related to one's own group

-this fear causes distraction and anxiety, interfering with performance by reducing the capacity of short-term memory and undermining confidence and motivation