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Intuition, reflective thinking and the brain

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Clara LS

on 18 December 2016

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Transcript of Intuition, reflective thinking and the brain

Intuition, reflective thinking and the brain
Part II: Article
Implicit and explicit social mentalizing
Part III: Daily life example
Conflict monitoring in language
Part I: Book
Two systems for thinking: a dual-process account
Social mentalizing
Default-interventionist functioning
System 1:
Quick inferences
System 2:
Verification, explicit processes

New information: iterative process

Dual-process theory

System 1
Unconscious, fast, intuitive, effortless, parallel, ...

System 2
Conscious, slow, reflective, capacity-demanding, serial, …
Nicoline Amalie Jensen
Yulia Kovalchuk
Clara Lallana Santos
Inés Nieto Romero
Bram Scheerlinck

Content
Part I: Book
Intuition, reflective thinking and the brain

1. Intelligence and the intuitive-reflective distinction
2. Two systems for thinking: a dual-process account
3. Self-insight in judgment and decision making
4. A neuroscience perspective on rationality

Part II: Article
Implicit and explicit social mentalizing

Part III: Daily life example
Conflict monitoring in language
Discussion Questions
Self-insight in judgment and decision making
A neuroscience perspective on rationality
Intuitive vs. reflective judgment
Emotion and Decision Making
Hemispheric differences
The basal ganglia and the anterior cingulate cortex
"Interpreter"
Maintain stable body image
Detect abnormalities
Update body image
Left
Right
Temporal lobectomy
Rausch (1977)
Resist new information
Change original hypothesis
Temporal lobectomy
Rausch (1977)
Handedness
Individual differences on thinking
Right handers: more functional asymmetry and smaller corpus callosum

Mix-handers: better at holding contradictory representations, change attitudes more easily
Corpus callosum
Inter-hemispheric interaction




Functional asymmetry




Hemispheric specialization
Jasper and Christman (2005)
Basal ganglia
Anterior cingulate cortex
Intuitive thinking

Implicit learning Different memory systems
Sequences and probabilistic associations
HD and PD patients
Reflective thinking

Conflict monitoring

Controls other brain regions: cognitive and emotional processes in judgment and decision tasks
Detection not of errors but of conditions under which errors are likely to occur (Carter, 1998)
- When considering moral dilemmas
- Causal judgment tasks with inconsistent data
- When acting against behavioral tendencies during framing tasks
- When a partner who behaved fairly in an economic game gets a shock (+ women)
- When declining to share money with a good person or share money with a bad person
Also...
Recognition of emotions
Positive emotions
Automatic speech
Intelligence and the
Intuitive-Reflective Distinction
Fundamental computation bias
= Tendency to perceive the full context of a problem.

High intelligent individuals avoid this bias and are better able to decontextualize problems.

This cognitive ability may help us find what is normative in judgment and decision-making tasks
Linda problem
Linda is 31 years old, single, outspoken, and very bright. She majored in philosophy. As a student, she was deeply concerned with issues of discrimination and social justice, and also participated in anti-nuclear demonstrations. Please rank the following statements by their probability:

a. Linda is a teacher in an elementary school.
b. Linda works in a bookstore and takes Yoga classes.
c. Linda is active in the feminist movement
d. Linda is a psychiatric social worker.
e. Linda is a member of the League of Woman Voters.
f. Linda is a bank teller.
g. Linda is an insurance sales person
h. Linda is a bank teller and is active in the feminist movement.
Key statements:
Linda is a bank teller

Linda is a bank teller
and is active in the feminist movement.
Results:
19% of individuals who do not violate the conjunction rule had a higher intelligence than the 81 % of individuals who did it.
Cognitive reflection
While some authors argue that reflection can lead to more normative outcomes, others find the opposite pattern.
So, what is the feature of more intelligent individuals that makes them follow more normative outcomes?
1. A bat and a ball cost $1.10 in total. The bat costs $1 more than the ball. How much does the ball cost? _____ cents.
Intuitive responses

1. A bat and a ball cost $1.10 in total. The bat costs $1 more than the ball. How much does the ball cost?
10 cents.
2. If it takes 5 machines 5 minutes to make 5 widgets, how long would it take 100 machines to make 100 widgets?
100 min
3. In a lake, there is a patch of lily pads. Every day, the patch doubles in size. If it takes 48 days for the path to cover the entire lake, how long would it take for the patch to cover half of the lake?
24 days
Correct responses

1. A bat and a ball cost $1.10 in total. The bat costs $1 more than the ball. How much does the ball cost?
5 cents.
2. If it takes 5 machines 5 minutes to make 5 widgets, how long would it take 100 machines to make 100 widgets?
5 min
3. In a lake, there is a patch of lily pads. Every day, the patch doubles in size. If it takes 48 days for the path to cover the entire lake, how long would it take for the patch to cover half of the lake?
47 days
3. Task:
basket experts were asked to make predictions about the outcomes of different matches.
Experimental condition:
write down the reasons for the predictions.
Results:
the experimental group picked the winning team 65% of times compared to the 70% of the non-reasoners (small but statistically significant)
Cognitive reflection leading to normative outcomes
Cognitive reflection leading to non-normative outcomes
Now, think about it a little longer...
1. Task:
rate the taste of five brands of strawberry jam.
Experimental condition:
write down the reasons for the rating.
Result:
the experimental group gave different overall ratings than those who had not written the reasons down and these ratings were more discrepant from those of experts.
2. Task:
rate the liking for two art posters and three humorous posters and choose one to take home.
Experimental condition:
write down the reasons for the liking.
Results:
the experimental group tended to choose more the humorous posters than the art posters and they were less satisfied with their choice when asked about it at the end of the semester,particularly those with an humorous poster.
Explanation:
people’s likes and dislikes are quite intuitive and hard to articulate and this is even more true when talking about something such as art.
The confabulation of reasons in normal people
What happens when people have to describe their retrospective behavior?
The confabulation of reasons in surgical or brain-damaged patients
Split brain patients

What happens to the received visual stimuli when it is perceived by patients whose two hemispheres cannot connect?
Example: Electrical shock study


Conclusion:
people are aware of what they are thinking while doing it, but not what they are actually doing.
Two groups:
in one group participants were given a placebo pill and were told that the pill would cause symptoms like hand tremors, butterflies in stomach, heart palpitations, and breathing irregularities which are all normal symptoms of electrical shock.
Hypothesis:
people who attributed their symptoms to the pill instead of the shock would be willing to take more shock than the control group.

Results:
the group with the placebo pill did agree to take more shock that the control group, but only 3 out of 12 participants believed their symptoms to be caused by the pill.

When later told about the hypothesis
they denied having done it, but they thought that others might be willing to.
What was concluded from this?
Right hemisphere is visually intelligent
Left hemisphere is language related processing
Joe:
the split brain patient
Stroke Patients
Sometimes become paralyzed in one side of the body

In some cases of right hemisphere stroke, patients deny or invent excuses for problems

Visual neglect: most common after damage in right hemisphere.
Equally valid decisions?
Default-interventionist theories
System 1
: gives intuitive default response

System 2:
two options
Endorses fast System 1 response
Overrules with a normative response (through reasoning)

Parallel-competitive theories
Both systems act simultaneously

Competition for response control

Sloman
: associative vs rule-based thinking

(Simmons & Nelson, 2006)
Intuition & Morality
Social intuitionism (Haidt, 2001)

Moral decisions based on intuition

Analytic processes only post hoc justifications

Moral dumbfounding
Trolley problem
Dilemmas in the brain
ACC
: Conflict monitoring
Personal dilemmas
More conflict -> more activation

Risk-as-feelings Hypothesis
Emotions and cognitions influence each other bidirectionally, and, under certain circumstances, both may exert influence on behavior directly, unmediated by the other
The Famous Case of Phineas Gage

Before Accident
25 years old
Loyal and trustworthy
Dedicated to job and community
Nature of Accident
(September 13th,1848)
Walked away unassisted
No loss of language

Iowa Gambling Task (IGT)
Van Overwalle & Vandekerckhove (2013)

Social life:
role of System 1 and System 2?

Mentalizing inferences: inferring mental content
E.g. intentions, desires, beliefs, traits, …

Social mentalizing in the brain
Temporoparietal junction (TPJ)
: judging temporary beliefs & intentions
mPFC:
long-term trait inferences

ACC:
conflict monitoring
Mother tongue
Other languages
False friends
False friends are pairs of words or phrases in two languages that look or sound similar, but differ significantly in meaning
Conductor
Embarazada
Slut
Native speakers performance:
System 1:
intuition, fast, unconscious...
Basal ganglia:
automatic speech
Non-bilingual performance:
System 2:
rational, slow, conscious...
ACC:
conflict monitoring
Bilingual performance: Abutalebi (2011)
Switching between languages increases dACC activity
More efficient ACC functioning
Slut
(The end)
The absence of emotion and feelings is no less damaging to rationality and decision making than emotional bias which under some circumstances sway our decisions in the wrong direction.
(Loewenstein et al, 2001)
Hypotheses
Somatic Marker Hypothesis
Bodily-related responses, so called somatic states, are spurn by either:
Primary inducers
:stimuli with a learned history of bringing pleasure or aversion
Secondary inducer
: thoughts or memories of primary inducers

Somatic states direct attention to or from relevant stimuli

Individual is still free to apply reasoning techniques on the contents of working memory

Present in all normal individuals

(Bechara & Damasio, 2005; Damasio, 1994)
Damasio Analysis
Reconstruction from skull measurements
Ventromedial damage in both hemispheres
No dorsolateral damage
After the accident...
Capricious, childish, obstinate
Offensive language
Insensitive to external cues (e.g., weather)
A new plan every day (e.g. work vs. travel)
Extensive wanderings

(Damasio et al,1994)
“ The equilibrium or balance, so to speak, between his (Gage’s) intellectual faculties and animal propensities seems to have been destroyed. He is fitful, irreverent, indulging at times in the grossest profanity... impatient of restraint or advice when it conflicts with his desires”
- John Harlow
Payoff Structure
Order of cards:
Area involved in linking somatic feedback with cognitive representation
A+B =
“bad” decks (larger payoff, very big losses)
C+D =
“good” decks (smaller payoffs, small losses)

Effects of Damage to the Orbitofrontal/Ventromedial Prefrontal Cortex
Decision Making Behavior
Cards Selected from Good - Bad Decks

Why do VM patients do worse?

Damasio’s hypothesis:

VM patients have a deficit in the ability to generate somatic signals, such as arousal, associated with prior experiences (e.g. big losses)

Somatic signals (arousal) can be measured with skin conductance

Skin Conductance Responses (SCR)
During Card Choices From Different Decks
Do these somatic signals have to be conscious?
Conscious knowledge alone is not sufficient for making advantageous decisions. Patients and controls do not differ in understanding of the task, yet differ in behavior

Somatic signals covertly bias decisions - even before participants have a “hunch” of what is going on (pre-hunch phase)

Conclusion
Slightly modified version of the task revealed that VMPC patients showed more response to immediate punishment than to a delayed reward
To put in simply: VMPC patients do not get emotionally invested after receiving large punishments

More about VMPC patients...

Although usually flat in emotion, sometimes burst in sudden anger
More likely to reject poor offers in the ultimatum game (Koenings & Tranel, 2007)

Can absence of emotion sometimes prove beneficial for decision making?
Another 50/50 gamble, in which each win cost $ 2.50 and each loss $1 (so it is rational to keep playing as long as possible):

VMPC patients made more rational choices and did not develop myopic loss aversion as the other two groups of people with no brain damage and with damage to other brain regions (Shiv et al, 2005)
VMPC patients respond identically to normal individuals on impersonal moral dilemmas but behave in a more utilitarian fashion on impersonal moral dilemmas (Koenings et al., 2007)
Would you push a stranger on a railway rails to stop the train from overrunning five people?
Sleepboot
In which situations would you just follow your intuition? And when would you only trust reflective thinking?
Do you believe humans make moral decisions intuitively? Or can we only act in a right way after conscious reflection?
Can you think of any misunderstanding you had due to false friends in your language?
Not necessarily equal probability of being chosen

Intuitive confidence bias

Intuitive options preferred to equally likely non-intuitive underdogs

?
Class experiment
Any volunteers?

The Moses Illusion
Erickson & Mattson, 1981

Difficulties detecting inaccurate elements when these are semantically related to theme

Partial Match Hypothesis
:
Words matched with memory structure
Not all words will match exactly
Accepted when sufficient comprehension occurs

Link with Dual Process Theory

Has intuition led you to make incorrect first impressions? Is it possible to overcome first impressions through rational thinking?

2. If it takes 5 machines 5 minutes to make 5 widgets, how long would it take 100 machines to make 100 widgets? _____ min.

3. In a lake, there is a patch of lily pads. Every day, the patch doubles in size. If it takes 48 days for the path to cover the entire lake, how long would it take for the patch to cover half of the lake? _____days

People tend to make theories about their own behavior that do not always reflect what actually happened.
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