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COLORADO / Engineering / PSYC 2145 / Is cognitive psychology evidence-based?

Is cognitive psychology evidence-based?

Is cognitive psychology evidence-based?


School: University of Colorado at Boulder
Department: Engineering
Course: Introductory Cognitive Psychology
Term: Spring 2019
Tags: Cognitive Psychology, Studyguide, textbook notes, and Lecture
Cost: 50
Name: Unit 1 Exam Review
Description: A review guide for first cog psych Exam including: Textbook review Non-text book review Lecture Material Vocabulary Overview of Experiments
Uploaded: 01/29/2019
8 Pages 131 Views 5 Unlocks

tyfe8599 (Rating: )

Lecture Material

Is cognitive psychology evidence-based?

An important feature of cognitive psychology is that it is evidence­based. For this  reason, I have discussed some experimental evidence in each lecture. You should  expect a fair number of lecture questions based on these experiments. In particular, you should pay close attention to the following studies and know what the researchers did,  what they found, and what those results mean.

1. Roediger & Karpicke’s (2006) original testing effect study (01/17 lecture) a. Evaluated the success of 2 different types of study methods;  study → study & study → test  

b. Timing of final test: 5min, 2 days, or 1 week later

c. Study → test  Was better for long­term retention (exams)

2. Karpicke & Blunt’s (2011) testing vs. concept maps study (01/17 lecture) a. Is creating maps more effective long term than testing? 

What were proven in mueller and oppenheimer's note-taking experiments?

Don't forget about the age old question of What is ethnocentric fallacy?

b. Four groups: Study, Repeated Study, Concept Maps, Testing

c. Most Confident: Repeated Study Group Least Confident: Testing Group d. Most Successful: Testing Group (Both verbatim and inference questions) 3. Levels of processing study, illustrated by an in­class demo (01/22 lecture) a. Retention Depends on the kind of processing you do during encoding.  Deeper Processing during encoding = Better later recall. Focus on  meaning. Deep > Active > Elaborative If you want to learn more check out What were the problems under the article of confederation?

b. Deep understanding and focuses on meaning and understanding  i. Retention depends on the kind of processing you do while 

encoding. Understanding the semantics and meaning of the content rather than focusing on visual or auditory information provided. 

When is note-taking ineffective as a strategy?

c. Active, personal engagement with a clear purpose. 

i. The generation effect: What you generated on your own is 

remembered better than what you read or hear. 

ii. The idea you ‘create’ is processed better. However, make sure you  generate something that is accurate

d. Elaborative, establishing new connections. Linking concepts or adding to  previously existing knowledge 

i. Promotes deeper/active processing and facilitates later retrieval.  ii. Elaborative Rehearsal:

iii. Ex. Connecting two words through imagery or creating   

4. A series of studies demonstrating experimental (causal) evidence about the  negative effect of media multitasking (Hembrooke & Gay, 2003; Sana, Weston, & Cepeda, 2013) (01/22 lecture)

a. Evaluated the effects of leaving the laptop open & closed as well as  multitasking habits during the encoding process

b. Found that having an electronic device open and multitasking not only  negatively affect the person doing it, but the people surrounding who can Don't forget about the age old question of What does emic perspective mean?
We also discuss several other topics like How does one compute for heats of rxn (enthalpy)?

see it.  

c. “Attentional Residue”: your brain continues to process the information  even if you stop.

5. State­dependent learning studies: Diver study and alcohol study (01/22 lecture) a. The state they learn things in effects the success rate of retrieval. This  includes mood, area (visuals and noise), intoxication ect.  

b. Ex. If you encode while you are sober, you are more successful at  recalling sober. Vs. if you study intoxicated you will be more successful  recalling the information intoxicated.

c. Don't forget about the age old question of What is the composition of atoms?

6. Hellas et al.’s (2018) study about students’ estimation of exam grades (01/24  lecture)

a. Examined peoples’ understanding of their learning and comprehension

7. Mueller and Oppenheimer’s (2014) note­taking experiments (01/24 lecture) a. Pen and Paper is the most effective form of note taking If you want to learn more check out How may atoms do monatomic elements have?

i. Showing benefits for conceptual (rather than factual) questions

ii. Writing fewer words → but more attentive to what is being  written → Deeper and active encoding for important  


b. Whereas typing notes leads to copying lecture notes verbatim 

Non­Textbook Readings

You should focus on understanding each article’s main points

1. What you can do or should avoid to maximizing your learning (Optimizing  Learning in College):

a. Do:

i. Study a little bit every day (Spaced Studying) helps to  

remember things

ii. Quiz myself: Test what I know and don’t know

iii. Be organized/Prepare for the upcoming class

b. Don’t:

i. Use technology during class

ii. Multitask: Put all of your focus on what your learning to get the 

most out of it 

iii. Read/reread content mindlessly 

2. Effective or ineffective ways to implement commonly used study strategies (Five  Popular Study Strategies). 

Study Strategy



Helps With


­ Simply  

rereading is not  enough

­ Spacing out the  time you reread  the chapter  

efficiently (Spaced  Reading)

- If immediate  

testing is coming  (massed reading) -Inference


multiple choice,  

and short answer


­ Marking too  

little or non



- Marking must  be taught  


­ Students  

remember marked  words

- Withholding  

marking until after  an initial read  

allows the learner  to use the first  

read to identify the

- Multiple-choice tests, Free recall, short  

answer, fill in the blank, and essay questions  

- Factual but not  applicational Tests

key points to be  marked, thus  

eliciting active,  elaborative  

processing of the  text.


- Not good for audio and visual  presentation of Content;

movement may be interfering with

comprehension (storage)

-Useful of later review - potentially  

for encoding

- Taking note by hand enhances performance on the final conceptual test

- Those who type are more likely to recall critical topics, making them better for exams

- Greater quantity of notes benefits;  - learners are engaging in generative  

processing of the  material

­ (a) summarize,  (b) paraphrase (c)  outlining

Factual and

applicational Tests


­ Student


outlines (unless  there is prior  

understanding  on how)


beforehand helps with  

organization of the  text (saving time) - skeletal outlines (given with headers to fill out info)

­ learners to engage in active learning  through  

identification and  structured  

organization of key  information  

- Comprehension - Factual and  

applicational Tests

Flash Cards

- ‘dropping’ cards

too early; we  

believed they are

­ Repeated practice  in recalling answers ­ Spaced studying ­ Don’t drop 


- Exam Scores

- Recollection of  




learned but they are

not(avoid bad

metacognition& gain additional practice)

- More difficult to implement



other than vocabulary and answerable

questions - not used for critical thinking

- Mixing flashcards for different topics unless category and math learning

­ Two different  

topics are  

beneficial for  


retention. Although a good deal of  


evidence suggests  that mixing is  

beneficial in  

category and  

math learning

- Factual but not  applicational Tests

3. Use the summary table in each article effectively for your reviewing of these  assigned readings.

a.  Table 1 on p. 658 for the Optimizing Learning article:

b. Table 2 on p. 400 for the Five Strategies article


Introspection: “looking within,” to observe and record the content of our own  mental lives and the sequence of our own experiences. How we are doing on  the inside.  

Behaviorist: Believe that our responses to environmental stimuli shape our  actions. 

Transcendental method: Begin with the observable facts and then work  backward from these observations. In essence, you ask: How could these  observations have come about? What must be the underlying causes that led to these effects? We use this to study objects or events that can’t be  observed directly

- Ex. Never seen an electron, but we know a great deal about it from things it is related to

Cognitive neuroscience: The effort towards understanding humans’ mental  function through close study of the brain and nervous system  

Clinical Nueropsychology: The study of brain function that uses, as its main  data source, cases in which damage or illness has disrupted the working of  some brain structure.  

Textbook Test Yourself Questions  

1. What aspects of H.M’s life were disrupted as a result of amnesia? a. Amnesia = memory problems where the person cannot create  new memories

b. With no memory development, he lost the ability to live with bad  and good news and adjust to it. He had no recollection of  

whether the time had passed or not.  

2. Why is introspection limited as a source of scientific evidence? a. There are thoughts that are unconscious and untold - limiting  research 

b. There is no way to ‘test’ these interceptions, making it difficult to separate truth from lies and correct from incorrect.  

c. Ex. “My headaches are worse than yours.” How can we prove  this?? We can’t give the other person my headache or vice versa 3. Why do modern psychologists agree that we have to refer to mental  states (what you believe, what you perceive, what you understand) in  order to explain behavior?

a. Because we are not only focusing on a physical stimulus. In order for us to understand people’s motivations and understandings,  they must have a sort of background knowledge.  

b. Ex. Your friend says “Pass the Salt” and you do so easily,  knowing what they want. However, another person may not

understand the phrase because they don’t have a background in  such habits. It is not a physical stimulus having us pass the salt,  it’s the understanding that someone else needs it and we are  sitting closest.  

4. Describe at least one historical development that laid the groundwork  for the cognitive revolution

a. (1) Structuralism: Study conscious mental events to uncover the  structure of the mind developed by Wudnt

i. Rely on introspection as the (flawed) method

1. Too subjective; only about conscious processes.  

Leads to inaccurate observations  

b. (2) Behaviorism: Focused on objectively observable behaviors  and stimuli  

i. Lead to discoveries of conditioning. Wanted to focus on  mental processing

ii. A complete ban on mentalistic notions (beliefs, goals,  expectations)

iii. Focus on the relationship between stimulation and  behavior  

c. (3) Cognitive psych: Studying mental processes to understand  the behavior

i. Open for the possibility to look at the mind objectively and  scientifically  

5. Describe at least three types of evidence that cognitive psychologists  routinely rely on. 

a. Response Time: How long someone needs to make a particular  response 

b. Observations of the Brain and nervous system: the Chemical  release of the body can help determine what we are experiencing c. Neuroimaging Techniques: Allow us to view the structure of the  brain and what parts are activated to what stimuli  

6. Some critics of Darwin’s theory of evolution via natural selection argue  this way: “Darwin’s claims can never be tested because of course, no  one was around to observe directly the processes of evolution that  Darwin proposed.” Why is this assertion misguided, resting on a false  notion of how science proceeds? 

a. It is not necessary that we need to witness a scientific  phenomenon to make it correct. Science is proved by other facts  that cannot be literally ‘shown’, however, evidence can stack up  and lead to one idea.  

b. This is where the “Transcendental Method” is very useful.  Working backward with the data presented can provide a  conclusion that isn’t before our eyes

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