Twice during this course, you will assume the role of a psychology professional in an applied setting and apply theories to suggest solutions to contemporary problems through a short paper. The purpose of these papers is to help you identify gaps in and propose improvements for professional disciplines based on the strengths and limitations of human cognitive systems while assessing foundational theories of cognitive psychology for their relevance to real-world issues.
Short papers should be approximately 3 to 5 pages in length and should be directed toward someone with limited or no background knowledge of psychological concepts or terminology. Because of this, you will want to explain relevant terms and concepts as you work through your paper. Be sure to use proper APA formatting and citation.
Your paper should include all of the following elements:
- An explanation of two theories to support the paper and how they connect to the applied setting
- An explanation of concepts and terminology appropriate for someone with limited or no background knowledge of psychological concepts
- An application of actionable steps to improve cognition
Expert Solution Preview
In this assignment, students are required to assume the role of a psychology professional in an applied setting and utilize theories to propose solutions to contemporary problems. The aim of these short papers is to enhance students’ understanding of the strengths and limitations of human cognitive systems while evaluating foundational theories of cognitive psychology in relation to real-world issues.
The first theory that can be applied to support the paper is the Information Processing Theory. This theory suggests that human cognitive systems operate similar to computers, processing information through different stages such as attention, perception, memory, and problem-solving. In an applied setting, this theory can be used to explain how individuals gather and interpret information, and how cognitive processes influence decision-making and problem-solving abilities.
To ensure that someone with limited or no background knowledge of psychological concepts can understand the paper, it is essential to provide explanations for relevant terms and concepts. For instance, when discussing the Information Processing Theory, it would be appropriate to explain terms such as attention (the ability to selectively focus on specific information), perception (the process of interpreting sensory information), memory (the storage and retrieval of information), and problem-solving (the cognitive process of finding solutions to difficulties).
In terms of actionable steps to improve cognition, one approach that can be suggested is mindfulness training. Mindfulness, rooted in Eastern contemplative practices, involves paying attention to the present moment in a non-judgmental manner. Research has shown that mindfulness practice can enhance cognitive functions such as attention, working memory, and cognitive flexibility. Therefore, incorporating mindfulness exercises into daily routines can potentially improve cognition in various applied settings.
Another actionable step to improve cognition is to promote a healthy lifestyle. Engaging in regular physical exercise has been found to have positive effects on cognitive functions, such as memory and executive functions. Adequate sleep, a balanced diet, and stress management techniques are also crucial for optimal cognitive functioning.
In conclusion, this short paper should outline two relevant theories, explain concepts and terminology for readers with limited psychological knowledge, and propose actionable steps to improve cognition in an applied setting. The combination of the Information Processing Theory, clear explanations, and practical suggestions like mindfulness training and a healthy lifestyle can contribute to the enhancement of cognitive abilities and problem-solving skills in various professional disciplines.