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Your Deceptive Mind: A Scientific Guide to Critical Thinking Skills Lecture

Your Deceptive Mind: A Scientific Guide to Critical Thinking Skills

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Publisher's Summary

No skill is more important in today's world than being able to think about, understand, and act on information in an effective and responsible way. What's more, at no point in human history have we had access to so much information, with such relative ease, as we do in the 21st century. But because misinformation out there has increased as well, critical thinking is more important than ever.

These 24 rewarding lectures equip you with the knowledge and techniques you need to become a savvier, sharper critical thinker in your professional and personal life. By immersing yourself in the science of cognitive biases and critical thinking, and by learning how to think about thinking (a practice known as metacognition), you'll gain concrete lessons for doing so more critically, more intelligently, and more successfully.

The key to successful critical thinking lies in understanding the neuroscience behind how our thinking works - and goes wrong; avoiding common pitfalls and errors in thinking, such as logical fallacies and biases; and knowing how to distinguish good science from pseudoscience. Professor Novella tackles these issues and more, exploring how the (often unfamiliar) ways in which our brains are hardwired can distract and prevent us from getting to the truth of a particular matter.

Along the way, he provides you with a critical toolbox that you can use to better assess the quality of information. Even though the world is becoming more and more saturated information, you can take the initiative and become better prepared to make sense of it all with this intriguing course.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©2012 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2012 The Great Courses

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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Performance
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  •  
    Ray A. - independent & unsolicited reviewer 08-26-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Fantastic learning experience."

    This series of lectures was both entertaining and very enlightening. I found myself every bit as engaged with this as with most of the fiction titles I've listened to and not the slightest bit dry.

    The info itself translates well for non-scientists. IMHO it gives the average person different ways of approaching questions and claims made by others - be it medical professionals, sales people or other individuals.

    Well worth listening to.

    23 of 31 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Irini 04-29-14
    Irini 04-29-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Scientific thinking, not critical thinking"
    Was Your Deceptive Mind: A Scientific Guide to Critical Thinking Skills worth the listening time?

    This course is not worth the time spent on it, since all the ideas from these lectures could be explained in one 30 minute lecture.
    Moreover, the course is not about critical thinking, the course is about how to think as a scientist.
    It remains a mystery for me why this course has such high rating on audible!


    11 of 14 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Patrick United States 01-21-14
    Patrick United States 01-21-14 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
    64
    ratings
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    38
    29
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    5
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    "Educating your mind for our society."
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes I would. Very informative and exposes the listener to things going on that impact your life that you know nothing about and no way to offset it. It provides very useful info regarding nearly every aspect of your life. The narrator/professor speaks in layman term. Very pleasant to listen to.


    Have you listened to any of Professor Steven Novella’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No


    11 of 15 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lloyd SOUTHLAKE, TX, United States 09-06-13
    Lloyd SOUTHLAKE, TX, United States 09-06-13
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    "A great guide"
    What did you love best about Your Deceptive Mind: A Scientific Guide to Critical Thinking Skills?

    IT covered a lot of ground and did so well.


    What does Professor Steven Novella bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    I do a lot of driving and it covered the topic without the need for visuals.


    6 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jatinder S Brar 07-12-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
    47
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    "Not for those looking to improve themselves"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    Individuals looking for reaffirmation of their skepticism of, or those looking to walk out from the shadows of pseudo-science.


    What was most disappointing about The Great Courses’s story?

    There is no skill building here. The book lays out the world as the author (and for the most part the scientific community at large) sees it; but provides nothing for the reader that can be used to build on their existing critical skill set. An individual struggling to shake off belief in the existence of Bigfoot may find this book useful; but if you are a professional looking to add something to your toolkit with regards to your own critical thinking process, the author has nothing to offer you. Don't waste your time.


    47 of 67 people found this review helpful
  •  
    january Rock Hill, SC 01-23-14
    january Rock Hill, SC 01-23-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I didn't like it...or did I?"

    I have listened to several lectures in this series and loved every one. Not so much this one, though. I keep rereading the title to see if it might give me some indication where I went wrong. But, no. That's no help.

    Going into the lecture, I was expecting Professor Novella to instruct us on ways to use the scientific method to think about things in a critical way. That's not what this lecture is about at all. Instead, it is about how to think critically about science.

    In the first two or three sessions he does touch on some practical uses of critical thinking, and then again in the final session. The rest of the time he spends talking about scientists who have made mistakes and people who believe in kooky ideas, like cult teachings.

    I initially chose this lecture over, say, Important Pharaohs of Egypt, because of something I recently heard on the news. The White House held a press conference to let people know that the government healthcare website was safe and had not been hacked. Normally I don't pay much attention to White House press conferences, but this one struck me because there was no news report before hand to indicate that the website was unsafe. This, therefore, led me to think that this was the result of a logical fallacy. Someone was poisoning the well. Someone who is opposed to government healthcare started a rumor, and people who weren't using their critical thinking skills spread it around, thus causing the White House to address a problem that did not exist.

    Because of this, I wanted to know more about how our brains work, and why people let themselves get carried away by things they haven't fully thought through. Not about the drudgery of scientific proof.

    There is one thing about this lecture that I did like, however. While I was sitting there listening, trying very hard to learn something new, I realized that my level of critical thinking is above normal. Learning by not learning. Hmm...

    I'm not saying this is a bad lecture. It will be very interesting to someone who has never heard this information before. It's very important to learn how to call BS when it needs to be called. But I didn't find this lecture helpful. Perhaps I am just to skeptical about everything already.

    39 of 56 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Allan Fredensborg, Denmark 05-29-17
    Allan Fredensborg, Denmark 05-29-17 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Ok summary"

    For me personally, nothing really new here. Listening to podcasts from Sam Harris and "you are not so smart" will more than adequately cover the subject but in and of itself it is a good collection of ideas that one is well served to listen to if you have not spent much time looking into this domain before.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kayden Nathan reluctant Amazon Customer 02-21-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
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    "lesser course"

    With a bit of research I feel I could have given just as good a course myself. It's terrible to listen to an author who doesn't follow his own advice, one who uses contradictory ideas to prove his own theories. I found myself arguing with this professor quite a lot because of not very well articulated references.

    5 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeffrey 02-06-15
    Jeffrey 02-06-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
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    "Uninteresting and poorly organized"
    What disappointed you about Your Deceptive Mind: A Scientific Guide to Critical Thinking Skills?

    I found the piece had little new information for me and didn't present its idea effectively. When I have to decipher what someone is saying because of their poor choice of words and lack of flow in what should a polished, published peice like this then there's a problem. The examples and stories were boring and a few times were misinformed.


    How could the performance have been better?

    I felt like this whole thing was done in a single, poor take. The professors constant use of the word 'literally' was a bit obnoxious.


    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Moon Arlington VA 01-04-15
    Moon Arlington VA 01-04-15 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great book! And a great narration!"

    Bravo!
    Even if you think you are a critical thinker, you should read /listen to this book. You'll reinforce your inner skeptic and possibly improve your critical thinking. To me, this book was a great listen, and I will review it periodically.
    Again, Bravo! for a job well done!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Mr. J. A. Ball
    Spain
    4/9/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Informative and engaging"

    A must for seekers of knowledge and truth. Not nearly ss dry as the course title suggests. I wish this course was compulsory in all schools.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ben
    3/14/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great listen"

    I would definitely recommended a listen to this. The speaker is very clear and concise. Throughly enjoyed.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mr. C. S. Richardson
    2/18/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "excellent"

    really enjoyed this book. would recommend to anyone with an interest in this field. enjoy!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sal Ersan
    1/4/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Fantastic introduction to critical thinking. "

    That story about a McDonalds burger that's been preserved for 20 years that crops up in the news from time to time is nonsense. Any well cooked burger will be similarly well preserved - its due to the science of moisture, not nasty chemicals. Why is the story so popular? Note the fears it plays on and the people who push the story (health enthusiasts - people wanting to find examples of the evils of modern preservatives, or non experts looking to make a point).

    That's one of the hundred examples mentioned in this book: a fantastic introduction to critical thinking. Each chapter raises several points linked to a theme and amply uses examples to demonstrate these and remain engaging. I cannot recommend this enough to anyone at any level. Not for actual experts? Newton believed in alchemy and Conan Doyle believed in fairies...

    The narrator spoke a little slowly for me (I typically listen in double speed anyway and slow it for a replay if I don't catch a term or name used) and while the work generally linked to others (some psychological theories or books from others) there wasn't a huge amount of referencing. That's a very minor point from me though (just would be nice to be able to find some of the many examples of generic "researchers in the 1980s" they use).

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • david davidson
    london
    11/28/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    ""scientific" is the key word in this title"

    The background schema to this course is science and medical science in particular whilst my own interest is business but otherwise a great course.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • joshua hodson
    11/28/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Steven Novella always nails it."

    (this review should be read with a 1940's/50's news announcers voice)

    Tired of being taken for a fool by simple and clichéd marketing tactics? Tired of holding cherished but ultimately wrong beliefs? Tired of loosing Facebook debates on the merit of being wrong?...then look no further. Prof. Steven Novella will take you through all the essential steps of being a skeptic.

    You will learn how to only trust real science, and then how to be skeptical of said science.

    You will chart some of the most hilarious mistakes in scientific history and then have all of your cognitive biases laid bare as your world crumbles around you.

    lose your mind in most sane way possible.

    Pick up a copy today!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Juan Fandino
    10/17/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Honest shot, didn't live to expectations"
    Any additional comments?

    I expected more from reading the reviews. Some bits are interesting but most of it it is just quite vane.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Phil
    Totnes, United Kingdom
    9/30/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent series of lectures."

    Thoroughly recommended for anyone who wants to gain a better understanding of the way science works.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • George
    9/17/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Outstanding"

    Outstanding courses! Difficult to grasp in one go the amount of information. Reviewing necessary in order to fully understand the topics.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Nadine
    8/8/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I found this very engaging, enjoyed every minute"

    Easy listening, enjoyable lectures. I would definitely recommend this audio book. Discusses a wide array of the cognitive biases we are all subject too.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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