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Do your students have the tools to distinguish between the true science of human thought and behavior from pop psychology? John Ruscio's book provides a tangible and compelling framework for making that distinction. Because we are inundated with "scientific" claims, the author does not merely differentiate science and pseudoscience, but goes further to teach the fundamentals of scientific reasoning on which students can base their evaluation of information.
1. Introduction: Pseudoscience and the Need for Critical Thinking.
2. Science: Evaluating Claims to Knowledge.
3. Language: Misleading and Evasive Tactics.
4. Magic: The Allure of Exotic Rituals, Fantasy, and Mysticism.
5. Authority: Appeals to Blind Obedience.
6. Experience: The Limitations of Testimonials as Evidence.
7. Plausibility: All Beliefs Are Not Created Equal.
8. Association: Establishing and Interpreting Correlations.
9. Risk: Biased Perceptions and the Media Paradox.
10. Belief: Confirmation Bias, Post-Hockery, and Overconfidence.
11. Schemes: The Seductiveness of Grand Conspiracy Theories.
12. Illusions: The Perception of Control.
13. Assessment: Classical Decision Theory.
14. Decisions: Clinical Vs. Statistical Approaches.
15. Ethics: The Use and Promotion of Unverified Treatments.
16. Tools: Suggestions for Critical Thinking.
"I like the content of the Ruscio book because it teaches reasoning, encourages students to think critically, and challenges many pre-conceived nOtions they believe because of the mainstream media."