Psychology

A:

The availability heuristic refers to the tendency of the human mind to assume that events that spring easily to mind happen with equal frequency in the real world. Heuristics are cognitive shortcuts used by the brain to navigate the world more efficiently.

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  • How Long Does It Take to Create a Habit?

    Q: How Long Does It Take to Create a Habit?

    A: Creating a new habit can take anywhere between 18 and 254 days. Based on a study conducted by Phillippa Lally, a health psychology researcher at University College London, published in the European Journal of Social Psychology, it takes two to eight months before a person can form a habit and automatically do something. Forming a new habit depends on the person, his behavior and his circumstances.
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  • What Are the Four Goals of Psychology?

    Q: What Are the Four Goals of Psychology?

    A: The modern study of psychology seeks to describe, explain, predict and change human behavior. Each of these goals contributes to a better understanding of the way human minds work.
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  • What Is Reaction Range in Psychology?

    Q: What Is Reaction Range in Psychology?

    A: Reaction range in psychology refers to how people have different reactions and attributes, although they may have had the same stimuli and environment as others. For example, two twins can grow up in the same environment, yet their IQs can be vastly different.
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  • What Are Negative and Positive Incentives?

    Q: What Are Negative and Positive Incentives?

    A: Positive incentives seek to motivate others by promising a reward, whereas negative incentives aim to motivate others by threatening a punishment. Opinion is divided as to what works best, but both have applications in a variety of settings.
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  • What Is the Difference Between Id and Ego?

    Q: What Is the Difference Between Id and Ego?

    A: The id includes primitive and instinctive behaviors, whereas the ego is the part of personality concerned with reality. Id and ego are two of the three elements of personality proposed by Sigmund Freud.
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  • What Is It Called When You Believe Your Own Lies?

    Q: What Is It Called When You Believe Your Own Lies?

    A: According to a scholarly article in the Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law, there is some indication that pathological liars believe their own lies to the extent of delusion. The claim remains controversial among psychiatrists. Pathological lying is also called mythomania or pseudologia fantastica.
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  • What Is Typical Immature Behavior?

    Q: What Is Typical Immature Behavior?

    A: Typical immature behavior in children, teens and adults is conduct that tends to portray an individual as younger than his or her true age. Characteristics may include chronically making self-centered choices, inability to think and reason independently, demanding a great deal of attention and exhibiting "baby" traits, such as crying and pouting.
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  • What Are Erik Erikson's Stages of Psychosocial Development?

    Q: What Are Erik Erikson's Stages of Psychosocial Development?

    A: Erik Erikson's eight stages of psychosocial development, first published in the 1950s, include trust versus mistrust, autonomy versus doubt, initiative versus guilt, competence versus inferiority, identity versus role confusion, intimacy versus isolation, generativity versus stagnation, and integrity versus despair. These stages begin at birth and continue until advanced age and death. Five stages occur before the age of 18.
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  • Is There a Formula to Humor?

    Q: Is There a Formula to Humor?

    A: Though there may be some point in time when scientists finally crack the humor code and come up with an exact formula for how to be funny, this is an intellectual challenge that has yet to be conquered as of 2014. There is no universally accepted way to be funny, and while some people are considered funnier than others in certain contexts, there's no real way to codify why that is or explain specific details of those individuals' success. There are certain broad areas, such as slapstick and other physical comedy bits, that can be identified as generally funny, but a pie-in-the face routine isn't likely to garner many laughs in a somber situation such as a funeral.
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  • What Is Effective Listening?

    Q: What Is Effective Listening?

    A: Effective listening requires that communication is heard completely and effectively interpreted into meaningful messages. It requires knowledge of the subject being discussed and attention to the speaker. Good effective listening skills demand that a person hears the message in full so that an applicable interpretation of the data is feasible.
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  • What Is Hypnosis?

    Q: What Is Hypnosis?

    A: Hypnosis is a process that results in a person being in a trance-like state of highly focused attention. This is often used in stage shows to get people to do ridiculous things, but it also has therapeutic benefits such as reducing pain.
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  • What Are the Types of Humor?

    Q: What Are the Types of Humor?

    A: According to Psychology Today, different types of humor include put-down humor, bonding humor and hate-me humor. These terms are used to describe aggressive humor that satirizes a person's unique quirks, warm humor that is clean and good-natured, and self-deprecating humor in which the joker makes fun of himself. Laughing at life is another form of humor that pokes fun at the general silliness of life.
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  • What Is the Definition of "emotional Stability"?

    Q: What Is the Definition of "emotional Stability"?

    A: "Emotional stability" refers to a person's ability to remain calm or even keel when faced with pressure or stress. Someone who is emotionally unstable is more volatile, which means the person faces an increased risk of reacting with violent or harmful behaviors when provoked.
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  • What Are the Three Types of Symbiosis?

    Q: What Are the Three Types of Symbiosis?

    A: The three types of symbiosis are mutualism, parasitism and commensalism. Symbiosis is the close relationship between two or more different species.
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  • What Is the Stability Versus Change Debate in Psychology?

    Q: What Is the Stability Versus Change Debate in Psychology?

    A: The debate in psychology over stability versus change centers on the permanence of initial personality traits. Some developmental psychologists argue that personality traits seen in infancy persist through a person's entire life, while others disagree.
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  • What Is the Difference Between Qualitative and Quantitative Data?

    Q: What Is the Difference Between Qualitative and Quantitative Data?

    A: The difference between qualitative and quantitative data is that qualitative data is observed and quantitative data is measured. Qualitative data refers to data that is described, whereas quantitative data provides measurements. Quantitative refers to quantity measurements and qualitative refers to quality.
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  • What Are Interpersonal Skills?

    Q: What Are Interpersonal Skills?

    A: Interpersonal skills are often called "people skills" because they describe a person's ability to interact with other people in a positive and cooperative manner. Unlike technical skills that people attend school for, interpersonal skills are considered soft skills that are typically developed over time through interactions.
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  • Why Is the Study of Psychology Important?

    Q: Why Is the Study of Psychology Important?

    A: According to Ronald Riggio, Ph.D., of Claremont McKenna College, the study of psychology is important to explain basic human behavior, apply critical decision and thinking skills, improve interpersonal communication and provide a background for the business sector. Psychology graduates hold many different careers.
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  • What Is Piaget's Theory of Moral Development?

    Q: What Is Piaget's Theory of Moral Development?

    A: Piaget's theory of moral development describes how children transition from doing right because of the consequences of an authority figure to making right choices due to ideal reciprocity or what is best for the other person. Piaget ties moral development to cognitive development. Piaget published his work in the 1920s, though it took several decades to become prominent.
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  • Why Do People Hum?

    Q: Why Do People Hum?

    A: People hum for several reasons, such as to calm nerves, feel happier and reduce stress. People hum unconsciously and consciously. Many use humming as a simple and effective way to ease tension and reduce stress and often derive health benefits in the form of improved sinus health in the process.
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  • What Are Examples of Mob Mentality?

    Q: What Are Examples of Mob Mentality?

    A: Mob mentality is a phenomenon in which people follow the actions and behaviors of their peers when in large groups. Examples of mob mentality include stock market bubbles and crashes, superstitions and rioting at sporting events. Historical examples of mob mentality include the Holocaust and the Salem Witch Trials.
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