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Cognitive Processing - Reasoning, Decisions and Problem Solving

Learn about the cognitive processes behind decision-making and problem-solving in this free online psychology course.

Publisher: NPTEL
This psychology course teaches you the techniques and approaches that drive cognitive processing. We study the definition of ‘reasoning’ and examine different problem-solving cognitive approaches. We define the concept of the ‘availability heuristic’, which states that memorable events are seen as more probable. This course blends psychology, philosophy and neuroscience to help you understand the fascinating processes behind thought.
Cognitive Processing - Reasoning, Decisions and Problem Solving
  • Duration

    4-5 Hours
  • Students

  • Accreditation


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This psychology course introduces you to the intriguing world of cognitive processing functions. We explore inductive reasoning and establish the role of problem-solving and creativity in overcoming obstacles. The course employs multiple demonstrations, problems, examples and assessment questions in instructor-led videos designed to guide you through the crucial cognitive processes behind reasoning, decision-making and problem-solving.

The course delves into Karl’s Popper’s famous ‘falsification’ principle that states that for a theory to be considered ‘scientific’, it must be able to be tested and possibly proven ‘false’ by employing different types of reasoning. We then study the concept of ‘pragmatic reasoning schemas’, a keystone theory that refers to practical thinking about cause and effect. We also explore the ‘availability heuristic’ concept, which states that memorable events are considered more probable than their more easily forgotten counterparts.

The course helps you discover that inductive reasoning conclusions are suggested with varying degrees of certainty but do not always clearly follow from hypotheses. We then lay out the three ways of determining the strength of arguments in inductive reasoning. You will gain insight into the ‘’base rate’ and ‘representativeness heuristic’ and will come to understand the role of confirmation bias in the decision-making process. Finally, we study ecological validity, components of a creative solution and analogical problem-solving. This cognitive psychology course delves into the fascinating processes that drive human thought and provides practical methods to make the most of them.

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