Cognitive Science in technology
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Cognitive Science is an interdisciplinary field that ties together the curricula of liberal arts and technical fields of study. However, it is de-emphasized in technical undergraduate studies such as Engineering. Cognitive Science is essentially the study of the human mind and how humans process information. It is the study of human responses, thinking, and perception. Human behavior and a person’s reaction are undetermined, but it can be better understood. Although human behavior and interaction is a routine part of life, engineers are taught to decipher code and not how to decipher a human’s behavior. Cognitive Science affects all aspects in the work environment. Organizational practices can be improved by understanding common biases and motivational theories in people. Having a cognitive awareness of typical human behavior will help to promote improved communication and positive reactions from people in the workplace. Human behavior is inevitable in any field but more crucial in technical fields especially when there is lack of communication or ambiguous guidelines and definitions. In technical fields, miscommunication or ambiguity can be a matter of life or death. In many situations, miscommunication can drive ambiguity. Although some people are happy with flexible guidelines, others seek to have well defined expectations. How do people react in situations surrounding miscommunication or ambiguity? In both situations, some people create opportunities and others become a hindrance. Processes and procedures can be put in place to alleviate ambiguous situations, but human performance and psychological factors still play a role as well. Human error can result from psychological factors, but the environment can be improved to limit those factors. As with any situation, mishaps are still prone to happen. Although human error is preventable in most cases, it’s never completely unavoidable. Human error continues to be a deep-rooted cause that can lead to negative outcomes. As stated by Alexander Pope, “to err is human…” (Moncur). This paper will explore underlying human behavior in daily activities. By understanding common biases and motivational theories driving human behavior, one can address negative behavior in a technical field in order to create opportunities.