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Cognitive Psychology For Dummies (For Dummies (Lifestyle)) Paperback – April 11, 2016
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From the Back Cover
- Grasp the fundamentals of cognitive psychology
- Apply key concepts concerning perception, memory, language and thought
- Write better research reports
Demystify the core concepts of cognitive psychology
Written specifically for psychology students and professionals, this hands-on guide provides an accessible and entertaining introduction to the field of cognitive psychology. Unlike the dense and jargon-laden content found in most psychology textbooks, it offers easy-to-understand explanations of the fundamental elements of cognitive psychology, giving you a firm grasp of the material.
- Put the 'fun' in fundamentals get a fascinating introduction to the field of cognitive psychology, from its history and relationship to other areas of psychology to how it's now studied
- Go cerebral discover how cognitive psychology can be applied in the real world and find useful pointers for how you can use it to aid your learning
- It's all about perception grasp how sensation, visual perception, object processing and attention play a major role in psychology
- Forget about it understand how short and long-term memory work, why we don't remember everything we've learnt and how critical aspects of everyday memory function
- Something to talk about find out the role that language and thought play in cognitive abilities
Open the book and find:
- Cognitive models that are used to explain rationality
- How humans solve simple and complex problems
- The cognitive processes involved in making decisions
- How emotion affects thought
- Ten eye-opening case studies
- Do's and don'ts for writing research reports
About the Author
Dr Peter J. Hills, PhD, is a principal lecturer and Head of Education in psychology at Bournemouth University. Dr J Michael Pake is a senior lecturer in Psychology at Anglia Ruskin University.
Top customer reviews
I read through the book several times, marking up concepts that I found useful in my own work. The chapters on problem solving, decision making, and the role of emotions are especially good, with lots of research examples giving them clarity. Now I'm in the mood to get one of the more expensive university textbooks to continue with this subject.
The book covers all the basics quite well. Memory storage, learning, sensation and perception and the other chestnuts of major Cog Psy textbooks are dealt with in due order and in sufficient detail for an undergraduate course on the topic. As a welcome attraction, some contemporary research is also given attention within this book. And given that many of the textbooks devoted to Cog Psy (even at the undergrad level) are not written in an engaging manner, a relatively approachable booster text is truly welcome. (I use the word 'relatively' here because this book is engaging only when compared to its competition. This is not a light read!) Undergrads will benefit from this book, and should use it for reviewing major concepts should they study for the Psychology GRE if they are planning to attend graduate school in the USA. It's also useful to someone who's been out of the classroom for a while and is returning to finish their psychology major. It is not intended as a standalone, but if you've been exposed to Cog Psy in the past, you'll be able to use this book.
And now the caveats.
This is one time where I truly wish I could give a book a split rating. Like almost every psychology textbook intended for undergrads, the authors have a limited grasp of the history of the discipline and frequently get it dead wrong. They confuse Wilhelm Wundt with this student Edward Titchener, falsely claim that Watson founded Behaviorism (a Nobel Prize winner named Pavlov did that, and there are many philosophical sources to the movement), etc. I didn't deduct for this problem because these sorts of errors still appear often in undergraduate textbooks, but it irritates me to no end since the scholarship within the History of Psychology has been railing against these types of academic folklore for years. These are also the types of problems that will haunt you when writing a grad school thesis. Secondly - and this is not a criticism but a caveat - the authors do slip in multiple Britishisms that a non-Brit should keep an eye out for. I'm surprised this got past the editorial staff if this is intended as an international edition. Finally, as I alluded to earlier, this is not a particularly engaging book in the sense of other Dummies books. I thought it would have a lighter touch with a greater emphasis on graphics, because graphics help students engage with concepts that are challenging. The tone is appropriate for the subject matter, but not necessarily this series.
For the target audience, however, this is a four-star book because it will be a very useful reference work as they attempt to master their first course in Cog Psy. They're the ones who are buying this and they are the ones I have written this review for.
Was a little surprised that it is published by Wiley, the massive publisher for textbooks and from my experience, medical text books.
This is a whole lot cheaper and yet covers most of the relative concepts of just Cognitive Psychology.
They tend to emphasize on empirical data because a traditional scientific objective truth approach quickly unravels with the billions of moving parts that make up the mind. I'm okay with that, it's a book on the mechanical aspects of cognition--until Part V.
The sections on vision and memory were especially helpful. How we see things is staggeringly complex. Part II deals with the larger parts and then drill down into more detailed and helpful explanations.
Also how memory is fleshed out for ways that a student can utilize could be really help around finals. This explores ways the mind works in improving their study and awareness in categorizing memory for ready access.
How memory is processed, interrelated, and stored is amazing. This leads to attention and how it works.
Understanding attention is vital to understanding the world around us and how the many players have used attention getting techniques to influence our behavior. This is a real world application that everyone needs to understand.
The sections on language occupy a the middle of the book. How we think depends largely on how we speak to ourselves; what language we use. I've always believed that a man is defined by his language. Of course, there is a section of language disability, or how this processing is physically interrupted. What is most interesting is how different cultures and societies use language that influences understanding.
This finally leads into the black hole of emotions, decision making, and general mental stability. By black hole, or black box, we really don't have a mechanical way of understanding and predicting what people we do individually. The machinery is there. Of the hundreds of billions of personalities that have roamed the earth over the epoch of human awareness has there ever been an identical personality to yours?
Never, and this book explains the limitless abilities of the human mind.
Most recent customer reviews
You get a brief outline on each subject before it switches to another.Read more