A model of heuristic judgment

In K. Holyoak & B. Morrison (eds.), The Cambridge Handbook of Thinking and Reasoning. Cambridge University Press. pp. 267--293 (2005)

Abstract

The program of research now known as the heuristics and biases approach began with a study of the statistical intuitions of experts, who were found to be excessively confident in the replicability of results from small samples. The persistence of such systematic errors in the intuitions of experts implied that their intuitive judgments may be governed by fundamentally different processes than the slower, more deliberate computations they had been trained to execute. The ancient idea that cognitive processes can be partitioned into two main families--traditionally called intuition and reason--is now widely embraced under the general label of dual-process theories. Dual-process models come in many flavors, but all distinguish cognitive operations that are quick and associative from others that are slow and governed by rules. To represent intuitive and deliberate reasoning, we borrow the terms "system 1" and "system 2" from Stanovich and West. In the following section, we present an attribute-substitution model of heuristic judgment, which assumes that difficult questions are often answered by substituting an answer to an easier one. Following sections introduce a research design for studying attribute substitution, as well as discuss the controversy over the representativeness heuristic in the context of a dual-system view that we endorse. The final section situates representativeness within a broad family of prototype heuristics, in which properties of a prototypical exemplar dominate global judgments concerning an entire set

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