In the book, open "50 Great Myths of Popular Psychology: Shattering Widespread Misconceptions about Human Behavior", Scott Lilienfeld and his colleagues offer a number of widely held myths, including:
- If you are unsure of your answer when taking a test, it's best to stick with your initial hunch.
- Some people are left-brained and some people are right-brained.
- Students learn best when teaching styles are matched to their learning styles.
- Researchers have demonstrated that dreams possess symbolic meanings.
- Opposites attract: we are most romantically attracted to people who differ from us.
- It’s better to express anger than to hold it in.
- Our handwriting reveals our personality traits
- Most people only use 10% of their brain power
- Playing Mozart’s music to infants boosts their intelligence
- Hypnosis is useful for retrieving memories of forgotten events
For the discussion, you will examine these popular and persistent myths. Thinking like a scientist, consider how you would go about conceptualizing your preconceptions of these beliefs and their implications.
Consider the previously mentioned myths. (1) As you entered this course in psychology, did you have preconceived beliefs relating to any of these myths? Briefly explain. (2) Using the provided resources and source material, and additional resources you have identified, discuss what the implications are for debunking these and other myths using scientific research methods. (3) Why do you think it’s important for us to have an accurate understanding of behavior and mental processes? (4) How can the science of psychology help with this understanding? For the last question, be sure to refer to the different kinds of research methods in your answers.
Be sure to support your postings and responses with specific references to provided source materials.