Cognitive Biases that Interfere with Critical Thinking and Scientific Reasoning: A Course Module
61 Pages Posted: 26 Apr 2017 Last revised: 1 Jul 2017
Date Written: June 30, 2017
It is clear that people do not always behave in a rational manner. Sometimes they are presented with too much information or they may want to make a quick decision. This may cause them to rely on cognitive shortcuts known as heuristics (rules of thumb). These cognitive shortcuts often result in cognitive biases; at least 175 cognitive biases have been identified by researchers. This paper describes many of these biases starting with actor-observer bias and ending with zero-risk bias. It also describes how one can overcome them and thereby become a more rational decision maker.
Keywords: rational man, cognitive biases, heuristics, anchoring bias, focusing illusion, happiness, availability bias, confirmation bias, neglect of probability bias, overconfidence bias
JEL Classification: A20, C44, D70, D81, G11
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