Engaging students with hands-on activities: Connecting Mental Set and Perception

In Jean Gorski’s Psychology class, students use the laptops to experience a variety of illusions first-hand, illusions that can’t always be displayed properly on paper. In these online experiments, students personally experience the impact of factors such as experience and expectation on perception.

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Each student is able to experience the influences on mental set both in a group environment and individually. By experiencing a variety of illusions first-hand, students are able to apply the concept of the lesson to their own experience, making a valuable connection between psychological theory and practice. The laptops enable students to experience psychological concepts in a real-world atmosphere, as opposed to an artificial experience of reading about them in a textbook.

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After the experiments, students use online research to figure out why an individual’s expectation or experience led to an incorrect conclusion. They then participate in a class discussion to share their results and to describe the advantages and disadvantages of mental set.

The lesson is here.

 

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