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J Pers Soc Psychol. 2003 Oct;85(4):650-61.

Just because you're imaging the brain doesn't mean you can stop using your head: a primer and set of first principles.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL 60637, USA. cacioppo@uchicago.edu

Abstract

Developments within the neurosciences, cognitive sciences, and social sciences have contributed to the emergence of social neuroscience. Among the most obvious contemporary developments are brain-imaging procedures such as functional magnetic resonance imaging. The authors outline a set of first principles designed to help make sense of brain-imaging research within the fields of cognitive and social neuroscience. They begin with a principle few would debate--that social cognition, emotion, and behavior involve the brain--but whose implications might not be entirely obvious to those new to the field. The authors conclude that (a). complex aspects of the mind and behavior will benefit from yet a broader collaboration of neuroscientists, cognitive scientists, and social scientists, and (b). social psychologists bring important theoretical, methodological, and statistical expertise to this interdisciplinary enterprise.

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