kitchen table math, the sequel: Color me not surprised

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Color me not surprised

In sum, we propose that adults never fully outgrow the cognitive and perceptual biases that are so striking in infants and preschoolers. That is a humbling thought, much as it was humbling to discover that humans are not the center of the universe or as rational and ‘‘in control’’ as once thought. However, if clarity can come from investigating extreme cases, then perhaps studying children, who show these biases more blatantly than adults, might be a rich source of insight and future hypotheses about adult cognition.

Not Quite as Grown-Up as We Like to Think: Parallels Between Cognition in Childhood and Adulthood
Adele Diamond and Natasha Kirkham | Psychological Science Volume 16—Number  4 | p 291-297.
I'm just waiting for the day they find out crows are smarter than people.

A lot smarter.


ChemProf said...

I actually use this idea in class, explaining why we use pH rather than concentration for dilute acids and bases, for example, because we evolved to deal with nice whole numbers not yucky scientific notation, so we use tricks to put numbers back on that scale. It is funny to watch my class think to themselves "yeah, we do think that way!"

Independent George said...

I'm actually not clear on exactly what is meant by "the cognitive and perceptual biases". Are we talking about personality traits? Skills/Interests? Social tendencies?

It makes intuitive sense to me that our brains are hard-wired towards certain behaviors at a young age, but I'm not sure I really understand what that means specifically.