Why Smart People Can Be so Dumb
New psychological research shows that people who perform well on intelligence tests are also more likely to give wrong answers on simple questions that test for an awareness of bias.
What's the Latest Development?
Answer this simple question: A bat and ball cost a dollar and ten cents. The bat costs a dollar more than the ball. How much does the ball cost? Most people quickly answer "ten cents," but the correct answer is "five cents." These kinds of small mistakes are due to shortcuts our brains take, preferring lazy, intuitive responses to laborious, arithmetic ones. Surprisingly, intelligent people seem to make these mistakes more easily, according to a new study in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. Researchers reached that conclusion by observing a positive correlation between performance on standardized intelligence tests, like the SAT, and rates of incorrect answers given to questions like the bat-and-ball one above.
What's the Big Idea?
While it makes intuitive sense that receiving a better education would remedy these kinds of errors, psychological studies have found that "more than fifty per cent of students at Harvard, Princeton, and M.I.T. gave the incorrect answer to the bat-and-ball question." The reason? Such questions test our awareness of bias, which is easy to spot in others but more difficult to see in ourselves because the error is unconscious. "In fact, introspection can actually compound the error, blinding us to those primal processes responsible for many of our everyday failings. ... The more we attempt to know ourselves, the less we actually understand."
Photo credit: Shutterstock.com
Upvote/downvote each of the videos below!
As you vote, keep in mind that we are looking for a winner with the most engaging social venture pitch - an idea you would want to invest in.
"Earth" features about 30 of the biggest names in entertainment.
- Lil Dicky is a rapper and comedian who released his debut album in 2015.
- His new music video, "Earth," features artists such as Justin Bieber, Ariana Grande, Ed Sheehan, Kevin Hart, and Leonardo DiCaprio.
- All proceeds of the music video will go to environmental causes, Dicky said.
Some evidence attributes a certain neurological phenomenon to a near death experience.
Time of death is considered when a person has gone into cardiac arrest. This is the cessation of the electrical impulse that drive the heartbeat. As a result, the heart locks up. The moment the heart stops is considered time of death. But does death overtake our mind immediately afterward or does it slowly creep in?
- A forensic artist in Scotland has made a hyper realistic model of an ancient dog.
- It was based on the skull of a dog dug up in Orkney, Scotland, which lived and died 4,000 years ago.
- The model gives us a glimpse of some of the first dogs humans befriended.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.