Cognition and Chance: The Psychology of Probabilistic Reasoning

Front Cover
Lawrence Erlbaum, 2004 - Mathematics - 520 pages
0 Reviews
Lack of ability to think probabilistically makes one prone to a variety of irrational fears and vulnerable to scams designed to exploit probabilistic naiveté, precludes intelligent assessment of risks, impairs decision making under uncertainty, facilitates the misinterpretation of statistical information, precludes critical evaluation of likelihood claims, and generally undercuts rational thinking in numerous ways. Cognition and Chance presents an overview of the information needed to avoid such pitfalls and to assess and respond to probabilistic situations in a rational way. In this book, Dr. Nickerson investigates such questions as how good individuals are at thinking probabilistically and how consistent their reasoning under uncertainty is with principles of mathematical statistics and probability theory. He reviews evidence that has been produced in researchers' attempts to investigate these and similar types of questions. Seven conceptual chapters address such topics as probability, chance, randomness, coincidences, inverse probability, paradoxes, dilemmas, and statistics. The remaining five chapters focus on empirical studies of individuals' abilities and limitations as probabilistic thinkers. Topics include estimation and prediction, perception of covariation, choice under uncertainty, and people as intuitive probabilists. Cognition and Chance is intended to appeal to researchers and students in the areas of probability, statistics, psychology, business, economics, decision theory, and social dilemmas.

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Other editions - View all

References to this book

About the author (2004)

Dr. Raymond S. Nickerson was, for 25 years, a researcher and manager at Bolt Beranek and Newman Inc. After retiring from BBN, he became affiliated with Tufts University, where he is now a research professor and from which he received his Ph.D. in Experimental Psychology. He is the author of several books, the latest of which is Psychology and Environmental Change (LEA).

Bibliographic information