TEACHING

Registration for “Think101”, a free online course on the science of everyday thinking, is now open. The University of Queensland course is offered through edX, the not-for-profit massive open online course (MOOC) provider founded by Harvard and MIT. Register here.

Jason Tangen and I are offering a course that is very different from traditional recorded lectures. Think101 is about everyday thinking, so there won’t be anyone wearing a lab coat or standing in front of a whiteboard or bookshelf. We’re filming real arguments at the dinner table and the pub instead. The course explores how people form and change their opinions, and provides tools to think better, argue better, and choose better. Topics range from subliminal messages and placebos, to cancer clusters and miracles.

You will learn how to evaluate claims, make sense of evidence, and understand why we so often make “irrational” choices. You will begin to rely on slow, effortful, deliberative, analytic, and logical thinking rather than fast, automatic, instinctive, emotional, and stereotypical thinking. The course provides tools for how to think independently, how to be skeptical, and how to value data over personal experience. We will examine the mental shortcuts and rules-of-thumb that people use and misuse, and apply this knowledge to everyday situations to help make better decisions.

Think101x is open to anyone, and no previous experience or education is required. The course starts in March 2014 and anyone can register at edX.org.  For interviews, contact Jason Tangen: phone +61 402 498 760, jtangen@psy.uq.edu.au or Matthew Thompson: phone +61 401 204 295, mbthompson@gmail.com.