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J Exp Psychol Learn Mem Cogn. 2014 Sep;40(5):1432-40. doi: 10.1037/a0036844. Epub 2014 May 12.

Explaining the alluring influence of neuroscience information on scientific reasoning.

Author information

1
Department of Psychology, University of Michigan.
2
WestEd.

Abstract

Previous studies have investigated the influence of neuroscience information or images on ratings of scientific evidence quality but have yielded mixed results. We examined the influence of neuroscience information on evaluations of flawed scientific studies after taking into account individual differences in scientific reasoning skills, thinking dispositions, and prior beliefs about a claim. We found that neuroscience information, even though irrelevant, made people believe they had a better understanding of the mechanism underlying a behavioral phenomenon. Neuroscience information had a smaller effect on ratings of article quality and scientist quality. Our study suggests that neuroscience information may provide an illusion of explanatory depth.

PMID:
24820673
DOI:
10.1037/a0036844
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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