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Assessing the use of cognitive heuristic representativeness in clinical reasoning.

Payne, Velma L and Crowley, Rebecca S (2008) Assessing the use of cognitive heuristic representativeness in clinical reasoning. AMIA ... Annual Symposium proceedings / AMIA Symposium. AMIA Symposium. 571 - 575. ISSN 1942-597X

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We performed a pilot study to investigate use of the cognitive heuristic Representativeness in clinical reasoning. We tested a set of tasks and assessments to determine whether subjects used the heuristics in reasoning, to obtain initial frequencies of heuristic use and related cognitive errors, and to collect cognitive process data using think-aloud techniques. The study investigates two aspects of the Representativeness heuristic - judging by perceived frequency and representativeness as causal beliefs. Results show that subjects apply both aspects of the heuristic during reasoning, and make errors related to misapplication of these heuristics. Subjects in this study rarely used base rates, showed significant variability in their recall of base rates, demonstrated limited ability to use provided base rates, and favored causal data in diagnosis. We conclude that the tasks and assessments we have developed provide a suitable test-bed to study the cognitive processes underlying heuristic errors.


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Item Type: Article
Status: Published
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Payne, Velma L
Crowley, Rebecca S
Date: 2008
Date Type: Publication
Journal or Publication Title: AMIA ... Annual Symposium proceedings / AMIA Symposium. AMIA Symposium
Publisher: American Medical Informatics Association
Page Range: 571 - 575
Schools and Programs: School of Medicine > Biomedical Informatics
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 1942-597X
Article Type: Research Article
MeSH Headings: Cognition; Decision Making; Humans; Medical Errors--prevention & control; Models, Neurological; Task Performance and Analysis; Thinking
Other ID: NLM PMC2656076
PubMed Central ID: PMC2656076
PubMed ID: 18999140
Date Deposited: 05 Oct 2012 19:06
Last Modified: 01 Nov 2017 14:03


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