Cognitive limits of effective information processing and communication

Cognitive limits of effective information processing and communication


Duration of the project:

Principal investigator:
doc. PaedDr. Vladimíra Čavojová, PhD.

List of scientific co-workers:
Mgr. Lenka Valuš, PhD.
PhDr. Eva Ballová Mikušková, PhD.
Mgr. Jana Bašnáková, MSc.
Mgr. Jurkovič Marek, PhD.
Mgr. Jakub Šrol, PhD.
PhDr. Brezina Ivan, PhD.
Mgr. Mária Kénesy Túnyiová, PhD.
PhDr. Robert Krause, PhD.
Mgr. Dáša Vedejová, PhD.
Mgr. Miroslava Galasová
Mgr. Jakub Lieskovský

The aim of the project was to identify and describe factors contributing to people’s better acceptance, comprehension and processing of expert information that are necessary for informed and evidence based decision making. The amount and complexity of information is growing steadily, however, people tend to believe more in pseudoscientific theories, biases or they deny science altogether, which has a negative impact on the life of individuals (refusal of vaccination, financing ineffective “treatment” methods, ignoring medical recommendations, believing in conspiracies, etc.). Lack of comprehension and acceptance of expert information are caused by (1) cognitive limitations of the information recipient (e.g., confirmation bias), (2) the way information is phrased and presented (e.g., using percent instead of natural frequencies). By studying these limitations we should be able to design and test the possibilities of efficient communication of information for debiasing and optimization of decisions.

Key words:
judgment, beliefs, critical thinking, scientific reasoning, understanding of information

Selected publications:
1. Kostovičová, L., Bašnáková, J., & Bačová, V. (2017). Predicting perception of risks and benefits within novel domains. Studia Psychologica, 59(3), 176–192.
2. Čavojová, V., Brezina, I., & Jurkovič, M. (2020). Expanding the bullshit research out of pseudo-transcendental domain. Current Psychology.
3. Šrol, J. (2018). Individuálne rozdiely v inhibícii presvedčení pri sylogistickom usudzovaní. In Československá psychologie, LXII (1), 1-15.
4. Vedejová, D. & Čavojová, V. (2020). Ako skúmať sklon k sebapotvrdzovaniu? Československá psychologie, 64, 2, 184-196.
5. Čavojová, V., Šrol, J., & Adamus, M. (2018). My point is valid, yours is not: myside bias in reasoning about abortion. Journal of Cognitive Psychology, 30 (7), 656-669.
6. Čavojová, V., & Ersoy, S. (2020). The role of scientific reasoning and religious beliefs in use of complementary and alternative medicine. Journal of Public Health, 42, 3, e239-e248.
7. Čavojová, V., Šrol, J., & Ballová Mikušková, E. (2020). How scientific reasoning correlates with health-related beliefs and behaviors during the COVID-19 pandemic? Journal of Health Psychology.
8. Hatoková, M., Masaryk, R. & Kénesy Túnyiová, M. (2018). How Slovak mothers view child vaccination: Focus group analysis. Československá psychologie, 62(2), 101-118.