The Cognitive Approach

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  • Main Assumptions
    • The Cognitive Approach
      • Emergence of Cognitive Neuroscience
        • They map out brain areas to specific functions and this is done using MRI and PET scans to investigate the neurological basis of mental processes
        • This could be used in the future in court cases, to use objective, controlled science to help prove if someone is guilty or lying
      • Evaluation
        • Uses mainly lab experiments which have controlled environments meaning they are able to be replicated - increases the reliability
        • Has real life application - can be used within court cases to decide whether or not someone is lying or telling the truth
        • The approach takes a reductionist approach - does not take into account emotions and motivation which influence the processing of information
        • Relies highly on lab studies which use artificial environments decreasing the external validity of the approach, specifically ecological validity
    • Internal mental processes can be studied scientifically and objectively
    • They are studied indirectly by inference which is drawing conclusions based on observation of behaviour
    • Schemas are used to help us interpret incoming information from the environment - these are mental frameworks of expectations built on previous experiences
    • This approach relies on using models comparing the brain to a computer - in similarities of processing, coding and stores of information


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