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PSY241: Cognitive Psychology Concluding Lecture

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  1. PSY241: Cognitive PsychologyConcluding Lecture Basis of all psychological theorising over the last 40 years Cognitivism underlies: developmental psychology, social psychology,clinical psychology, educational psychology, developmental psychology,cognitive neuroscienceoccupational psychology…

  2. representation • But what is cognitivism? • What links: • Perception • Learning • Memory • Attention • Language • Reasoning

  3. Stimulus Response Before cognitive revolution: Organism Behaviourism: study S-O-R relationships to infer LAWS governing learning of associations and hence behaviour

  4. World Action percept plan memory After cognitive revolution: Cognitivism: assume actions based on mental representations of world, not directly upon stimulus-response associations

  5. Mental representations of world • Perception: creation of representations • Learning: storage of representations • Memory: retrieval of representations • Attention: selection of representations • Language: communication of representations • Reasoning: combination of representations Bottom up and Top-down

  6. Perception • Learning • Memory • Attention • Language • Reasoning Are these the things the brain does?

  7. Summing up Cognitive Psychology • How the mind (not brain) functions • Study of mental processing of information • Many specific phenomena studied somewhat independently • At heart, all based on idea that mental representations mediate perception & action • Memory is fundamental • Hard problem is to find unifying principles • Study brain to test theories of mind

  8. THE PSY241 EXAMINATION • A 3 hour exam • Three sections, each with two questions • Answer one question from each section • That means three questions in total • Each in a separate booklet • Yes, the sections are ‘thematic’ but you can use material from across the module in all of the questions and gain marks for doing so

  9. ADVICE YOU SHOULD HEED • Spend about an hour on EACH question (not 90 mins, 60 mins, 30 mins) • Take 5 or 10 minutes to PLAN before starting to write • Try planning BOTH questions in a section before choosing • THINK of your conclusion before you start - what is the ANSWER! • DON’T just choose the one ‘you know most about’ • DON’T just list relevant points, make a logical argument

  10. How to get a 1st class mark • Answer the question by making an argument about psychological theory, backed up by evidence

  11. How to get a 2:1 • Answer the question • We cannot give you marks for providing correct information which does not answer the question.

  12. How to study for exams

  13. How to learn Rate Pleasantness Check Letters 69% 68% 43% 39% Incidental learning Intentional learning Hyde, T. S., & Jenkins, J. J. (1973). Recall for words as a function of semantic, graphic, and syntactic orienting tasks. Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior, 12(5), 471–480.

  14. How to learn 2 • Spaced vs blocked practice Bad Better Easier Dempster, F. N. (1989). Spacing effects and their implications for theory and practice. Educational Psychology Review, 1, 309-330. doi:10.1007/BF01320097

  15. How to learn 3 Practice writing Practice writing exam answers Practice critically reflecting on others’ writing Cho, K., & MacArthur, C. (2011). Learning by Reviewing. Journal of Educational Psychology, 103(1), 73-84. doi:10.1037/a0021950

  16. Three samples - real exam answers • What role does memory play in human reasoning? • Essay 1: 12 paras, 612 words • Essay 2: 12 paras, 615 words • Essay 3: 8 paras, 657 words. • NB: Less than HALF the length of a tutorial essay • Covers material not taught this year, so don’t worry. The point is to appreciate what an answer looks like, not to learn these answers specifically

  17. Three samples - real exam answers 2 • What role does memory play in human reasoning? • Covers material not taught this year, so don’t worry. The point is to appreciate what an answer looks like, not to learn these answers specifically • An excellent, a good and a poor answer • Your task is to decide which is which (notes given on subsequent slides)

  18. Essay 1 1-3: a very good introduction, sets out main argument. 4-7: concisely recounts Gestalt approach to problem solving (not covered this year, don’t panic!) 8 - bit of a jump here 9: something relevant from reading rather than lecture notes 10-11: brief account of T&K. 12: one line conclusion - the answer in a nutshell.

  19. Essay 2 1 - poor introduction, but good mention of Simon. 2 - muddled and slightly wrong introduction of T&K 3-4 Idiosyncratic account of Availability and representativeness 5 - jump to base rate fallacies 6 back to T&K heuristics 7-8: jump to Mental models 9: jump to Evans 10: wrong bit of Working Memory 11: back to Rules 12: Piaget No conclusion?

  20. Essay 3: 1: clear intro outlining good and bad aspects of memory 2-3: Summary of T&K with just one heuristic explained to make point 4: Biases in Wasons tasks 5: PRS account of above with evidence 6:Believability as a bias; Mental Models 7 Rules contrasted with Models; Piaget as an example, with a critique 8. Conclusion restating main point, drawing out a strong conclusion and actually answering the question.

  21. Generic Feedback • This was a very open-ended question since memory is involved in many aspects of reasoning. Good essays presented an argument that memory was essential in providing schemata / heuristics to support reasoning, but that these could lead to biases / systematic errors; these essays used phenomena to support their argument in the body of the essay. Weak essays listed phenomena without building them into an argument about the role of memory, often concluding either just that it had a significant role or was a cause of poor reasoning. A number of essays lapsed into detailed descriptions of related material such as Tversky & Kahneman, syllogistic reasoning, or Gestalt Problem Solving and so lost their focus on the question. Overall, although there were several good answers, most answers fell into the descriptive / list-like category, and several were clearly rushed and not finished. This question was the last on the paper, and so probably also the last to be attempted, suffering from poor time-planning. In consequence, the median mark was a low-mid 2ii.

  22. A note about questions • Check the wiki first • Then email me to let me know you have added your question to the wiki • t.stafford@shef.ac.uk