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the mental activity that is involved in the understanding, processing, and communicating of information


an object or an act that stands for something else


a mental structure used to categorize objects, people, or events that share similar characteristics


an original model on which others in the same category are patterned


a problem solving strategy that eventually leads to a solution; usually involves trying random solutions to a problem in a systematic way


a strategy for making judgments and solving problems

difference reduction

a problem-solving method that involves reducing the difference between the present situation and the desired one

means-end analysis

a heuristic device in which a solution to a problem is found by evaluating the difference between the current situation and the goal

Incubation effect

the tendency to arrive at a solution after a period of time away from the problem

mental set

the tendency to approach a new problem in a way that has been successful in the past

convergent thinking

thinking that is limited to available facts

divergent thinking

a thought process that attempts to generate multiple solutions to a problem

deductive reasoning

a form of thinking in which conclusions are inferred from premises; the conclusions are true if the premises are true


a statement or assertion that serves as the basis for an argument

inductive reasoning

a form of thinking that involves using individual cases or particular facts to reach a general conclusion

confirmation bias

the tendency to look for information that confirms one's preconceived notions

framing effect

the influence of wording or the way in which information is presented, on decision making


the communication of ideas through sounds and symbols that are arranged according to rules of grammar


the ways in which words and phrases are arranged into grammatical sentences


the study of the meaning in language the relationship between language; and the objects depicted by language

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