Skip to main content
×
×
Home
  • Get access
    Check if you have access via personal or institutional login
  • Cited by 17
  • Cited by
    This (lowercase (translateProductType product.productType)) has been cited by the following publications. This list is generated based on data provided by CrossRef.

    Nakhaeizadeh, Sherry Morgan, Ruth M. Rando, Carolyn and Dror, Itiel E. 2018. Cascading Bias of Initial Exposure to Information at the Crime Scene to the Subsequent Evaluation of Skeletal Remains,. Journal of Forensic Sciences, Vol. 63, Issue. 2, p. 403.

    Bolger, Fergus 2018. Elicitation. Vol. 261, Issue. , p. 393.

    van den Eeden, Claire A. J. de Poot, Christianne J. and van Koppen, Peter J. 2018. The Forensic Confirmation Bias: A Comparison Between Experts and Novices. Journal of Forensic Sciences,

    Fahsing, Ivar A. and Ask, Karl 2018. In Search of Indicators of Detective Aptitude: Police Recruits’ Logical Reasoning and Ability to Generate Investigative Hypotheses. Journal of Police and Criminal Psychology, Vol. 33, Issue. 1, p. 21.

    Shepherd, Stephane M. and Sullivan, Danny 2017. Covert and Implicit Influences on the Interpretation of Violence Risk Instruments. Psychiatry, Psychology and Law, Vol. 24, Issue. 2, p. 292.

    Zapf, Patricia A. and Dror, Itiel E. 2017. Understanding and Mitigating Bias in Forensic Evaluation: Lessons from Forensic Science. International Journal of Forensic Mental Health, Vol. 16, Issue. 3, p. 227.

    Evers, Arnoud T. and van der Heijden, Beatrice I. J. M. 2017. Competence-based Vocational and Professional Education. Vol. 23, Issue. , p. 83.

    Robertson, James 2017. Managing the forensic examination of human hairs in contemporary forensic practice. Australian Journal of Forensic Sciences, Vol. 49, Issue. 3, p. 239.

    Fahsing, Ivar and Ask, Karl 2016. The making of an expert detective: the role of experience in English and Norwegian police officers’ investigative decision-making. Psychology, Crime & Law, Vol. 22, Issue. 3, p. 203.

    Wiltshire, Patricia E. J. 2016. Protocols for forensic palynology. Palynology, Vol. 40, Issue. 1, p. 4.

    Found, Bryan 2015. Deciphering the human condition: the rise of cognitive forensics. Australian Journal of Forensic Sciences, Vol. 47, Issue. 4, p. 386.

    Debarnot, Ursula Sperduti, Marco Di Rienzo, Franck and Guillot, Aymeric 2014. Experts bodies, experts minds: How physical and mental training shape the brain. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, Vol. 8, Issue. ,

    Ralph, Edwin and Walker, Keith 2014. The Potential of Adaptive Mentorship<sup>©</sup>: Experts’ Perspectives. Open Journal of Social Sciences, Vol. 02, Issue. 08, p. 77.

    2014. Cognitive Neuroscience of Human Systems. p. 219.

    Thompson, Matthew B. Tangen, Jason M. and McCarthy, Duncan J. 2013. Expertise in Fingerprint Identification. Journal of Forensic Sciences, Vol. 58, Issue. 6, p. 1519.

    Dror, Itiel E. Wertheim, Kasey Fraser-Mackenzie, Peter and Walajtys, Jeff 2012. The Impact of Human-Technology Cooperation and Distributed Cognition in Forensic Science: Biasing Effects of AFIS Contextual Information on Human Experts*. Journal of Forensic Sciences, Vol. 57, Issue. 2, p. 343.

    Dror, Itiel 2011. A novel approach to minimize error in the medical domain: Cognitive neuroscientific insights into training. Medical Teacher, Vol. 33, Issue. 1, p. 34.

    ×
  • Print publication year: 2011
  • Online publication date: December 2011

9 - The paradox of human expertise: why experts get it wrong

Summary

Summary

Expertise is correctly, but one-sidedly, associated with special abilities and enhanced performance. The other side of expertise, however, is surreptitiously hidden. Along with expertise, performance may also be degraded, culminating in a lack of flexibility and error. Expertise is demystified by explaining the brain functions and cognitive architecture involved in being an expert. These information processing mechanisms, the very making of expertise, entail computational trade-offs that sometimes result in paradoxical functional degradation. For example, being an expert entails using schemas, selective attention, chunking information, automaticity and more reliance on top-down information, all of which allows experts to perform quickly and efficiently; however, these very mechanisms restrict flexibility and control, may cause the experts to miss and ignore important information, introduce tunnel vision and bias and can cause other effects that degrade performance. Such phenomena are apparent in a wide range of expert domains, from medical professionals and forensic examiners, to military fighter pilots and financial traders.

Expertise is highly sought after – only those with special abilities, after years of training and experience, can achieve those exceptional brain powers that make them experts. Indeed, being an expert is most often prestigious, well-paid, respected and in high demand. However, examining expertise in depth raises some interesting and complex questions. In this chapter, I will take apart and reject the myth that experts merely have superior performance per se.

Recommend this book

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this book to your organisation's collection.

The Paradoxical Brain
  • Online ISBN: 9780511978098
  • Book DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511978098
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to *
×
References
Aydin, K., Ucar, A., Oguz, K. K., et al. (2007). Increased gray matter density in the parietal cortex of mathematicians: a voxel-based morphometry study. American Journal of Neuroradiology, 28: 1859–64.
Beilock, S. L., Bertenthal, B. I., McCoy, A. M., & Carr, T. H. (2004). Haste does not always make waste: expertise, direction of attention, and speed versus accuracy in performing sensorimotor skills. Psychonomic Bulletin and Review, 11: 373–9.
Beilock, S. L., Carr, T. H., MacMahon, C, & Starkes, J. L. (2002). When paying attention becomes counterproductive: impact of divided versus skill-focused attention on novice and experienced performance of sensorimotor skills. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied, 8: 6–16.
Busey, T., & Dror, I. E. (2009). Special abilities and vulnerabilities in forensic expertise. In McRoberts, A. (Ed.). Friction Ridge Sourcebook. Washington, DC: NIJ Press.
Busey, T. A., & Vanderkolk, J. R. (2005). Behavioral and electrophysiological evidence for configural processing in fingerprint experts. Vision Research, 45: 431–48.
Carey, S. (1992). Becoming a face expert. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London, 335: 95–103.
Chase, W. G., & Simon, H. A. (1973). Perception in chess. Cognitive Psychology, 4: 55–81.
Czerwinski, M., Lightfoot, N., & Shiffrin, R. M. (1992). Automatization and training in visual search. American Journal of Psychology, 105: 271–315.
Draganski, B., Gaser, C., Busch, V., Schuierer, G., Bogdahn, U., & May, A. (2004). Neuroplasticity: changes in grey matter induced by training. Nature, 427: 311–2.
Dror, I. E. (2007). Perception of risk and the decision to use force. Policing, 1: 265–72.
Dror, I. E. (2008). Biased brains. Police Review, 116: 20–3.
Dror, I. E. (2009). How can Francis Bacon help forensic science? The four idols of human biases. Jurimetrics: The Journal of Law, Science, and Technology, 50: 93–110.
Dror, I. E., & Charlton, D. (2006). Why experts make errors. Journal of Forensic Identification, 56: 600–16.
Dror, I. E., & Cole, S. (2010). The vision in ‘blind’ justice: expert perception, judgment and visual cognition in forensic pattern recognition. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 17: 161–7.
Dror, I. E., & Harnad, S. (2008). Offloading cognition onto cognitive technology. In Dror, I., & Harnad, S. (Eds.). Cognition Distributed: How Cognitive Technology Extends Our Minds. Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing.
Dror, I. E., & Mnookin, J. (2010). The use of technology in human expert domains: challenges and risks arising from the use of automated fingerprint identification systems in forensics. Law, Probability and Risk, 9: 47–67.
Dror, I. E., & Rosenthal, R. (2008). Meta-analytically quantifying the reliability and biasability of fingerprint experts' decision making. Journal of Forensic Sciences, 53: 900–03.
Dror, I. E., Charlton, D., & Péron, A. E. (2006). Contextual information renders experts vulnerable to make erroneous identifications. Forensic Science International, 156: 74–8.
Dror, I. E., Kosslyn, S. M., & Waag, W. (1993). Visual–spatial abilities of pilots. Journal of Applied Psychology, 78: 763–73.
Dror, I. E., Schmitz-Williams, I. C., & Smith, W. (2005). Older adults use mental representations that reduce cognitive load: mental rotation utilises holistic representations and processing. Experimental Aging Research, 31: 409–20.
Dror, I. E., Stevenage, S. V., & Ashworth, A. (2008). Helping the cognitive system learn: exaggerating distinctiveness and uniqueness. Applied Cognitive Psychology, 22: 573–84.
Elo, A. E. (2008). The Rating of Chessplayers, Past and Present. San Rafael, CA: Ishi Press.
Fernandez, R., Dror, I. E., & Smith, C. (2011). Spatial abilities of expert clinical anatomists: comparison of abilities between novices, intermediates and experts in anatomy. Anatomical Sciences Education, 4: 1–8.
Flegal, K. E., & Anderson, M. C. (2008). Overthinking skilled motor performance: or why those who teach can't do. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 15: 927–32.
Frensch, P. A., & Sternberg, R. J. (1989). Expertise and intelligent thinking: when is it worse to know better? In Sternberg, R. J. (Ed.). Advances in the Psychology of Human Intelligence. Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum, 157–88.
Fusi, S., Drew, P., & Abbott, L (2005). Cascade models of synaptically stored memories. Neuron, 45: 599–611.
Gaser, C., & Schlaug, G. (2003). Gray matter differences between musicians and nonmusicians. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 999: 514–7.
Gauthier, I., Skudlarski, P., Gore, J. C., & Anderson, A. W. (2000). Expertise for cars and birds recruits brain areas involved in face recognition. Nature Neuroscience, 3: 191–7.
Gobet, F., & Simon, H. A. (1996). Recall of rapidly presented random chess positions is a function of skill. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 3: 159–63.
Gold, J., Bennett, P. J., & Sekuler, A. B. (1999). Signal but not noise changes with perceptual learning. Nature, 402: 176–8.
Goldstone, R. L. (2000). Unitization during category learning. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 123: 178–200.
Gray, R. (2009). A model of motor inhibition for a complex skill: baseball batting. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied, 15: 91–105.
Halpern, D. F., & Wai, J. (2007). The world of competitive scrabble: novice and expert differences in visuospatial and verbal abilities. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied, 13: 79–94.
Harley, E. M., Pope, W. B., Villablanca, P., et al. (2009). Engagement of fusiform cortex and disengagement of lateral occipital cortex in the acquisition of radiological expertise. Cerebral Cortex, 19: 2746–54.
Hecht, H., & Proffitt, D. R. (1995). The price of expertise: effects of experience on the water-level task. Psychological Science, 6: 90–5.
Jiang, X., Bradley, E., Rini, R. A., Zeffiro, T., Vanmeter, J., & Riesenhuber, M. (2007). Categorization training results in shape- and category-selective human neural plasticity. Neuron, 53: 891–903.
Johnson, E. J. (1988). Expertise and decision under uncertainty: performance and process. In: Chi, M. T. H., Glaser, R., & Farr, M. J. (Eds). The Nature of Expertise. Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum, 209–28.
Kahneman, D., & Klein, G. (2009). Conditions for intuitive expertise. American Psychologist, 64: 515–26.
Kepecs, A., Wang, X., & Lisman, J. (2002). Bursting neurons signal input slope. Journal of Neuroscience, 22: 9053–62.
Kundel, H. L., & Nodine, C. F. (1983). A visual concept shapes image perception. Radiology, 146: 363–8.
Langer, E. J. (1989). Mindfulness. New York, NY: Addison-Wesley.
Lu, Z. L., & Dosher, B. A. (2004). Perceptual learning retunes the perceptual template in foveal orientation identification. Journal of Vision, 4: 44–56.
Maguire, E. A., Gadian, D. G., Johnsrude, I. S., et al. (2000). Navigation-related structural change in the hippocampi of taxi drivers. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, 97: 4398–403.
Maguire, E. A., Woollett, K., & Spiers, H. J. (2006). London taxi drivers and bus drivers: a structural MRI and neuropsychological analysis. Hippocampus, 16: 1091–101.
Menchaca-Brandan, A., Liu, A. M., Oman, C. M., & Natapoff, A. (2007). Influence of perspective-taking and mental rotation abilities in space teleoperation. Proceedings of the ACM/IEEE International Conference on Human-robot interaction, 8–11 March. New York, NY: ACM Press, pp. 271–8.
Munte, T. F., Altenmuller, E., & Jancke, L. (2002). The musician's brain as a model of neuroplasticity. Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 3: 473–8.
Myles-Worsley, M., Johnston, W. A., & Simons, M. A. (1988). The influence of expertise on X-ray image processing. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 14: 553–7.
Norman, D. A. (1981). Categorization of action slips. Psychological Review, 88: 1–15.
Norman, D. A., & Shallice, T. (1986). Attention to action: willed and automatic control of behaviour. In: Davison, R., Schwartz, G., & Shapiro, D. (Eds.). Consciousness and Self-regulation: Advances in Research and Theory. New York, NY: Plenum.
Patel, V. L., & Cohen, T. (2008). New perspectives on error in critical care. Current Opinion in Critical Care, 14: 456–9.
Patel, V. L., Arocha, J. F., & Kaufman, D. R. (1999). Expertise and tacit knowledge in medicine. In: Sternberg, R. J., & Horvath, J. A. (Eds). Tacit Knowledge in Professional Practice: Researcher and Practitioner Perspectives. Mahwah, NJ: Basic Books, 75–99.
Peters, D. P., & Ceci, S. J. (1982). Peer-review practices of psychological journals: the fate of published articles, submitted again. Behavioural Brain Science, 5: 187–96.
Potchen, E. (2006). Measuring observer performance in chest radiology: some experiences. Journal of the American College of Radiology, 3: 423–32.
Pribyl, J. R., & Bodner, G. M. (1987). Spatial ability and its role in organic chemistry: a study of four organic courses. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 24: 229–40.
Reason, J. (1979). Actions not as planned: the price of automatization. In: Underwood, G., & Stephens, R. (Eds). Aspects of Consciousness, Volume 1. London: Academic Press.
Reason, J. (1990). Human Error. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press.
Reyna, V. F. (2004). How people make decisions that involve risk: a dual-processes approach. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 13: 60–6.
Rhodes, G., & McLean, I. G. (1990). Distinctiveness and expertise effects with homogeneous stimuli: towards a model of configural coding. Perception, 19: 773–94.
Rossmo, D. K. (2008). Criminal Investigative Failures. New York, NY: Taylor & Francis.
Rothwell, P., & Martyn, C. (2000). Reproducibility of peer review in clinical neuroscience. Is agreement between reviewers any greater than would be expected by chance alone?Brain, 123: 1964–9.
Russell, B. (1910). Knowledge by acquaintance and knowledge by description. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society, 11: 108–28.
Ryle, G. (1946). Knowing how and knowing that. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society, 46: 1–16.
Ryle, G. (1949). The Concept of Mind. London: Hutchinson.
Schneider, W., & Shiffrin, R. M. (1977). Controlled and automatic human information processing. Psychological Review, 84: 1–66.
Schwaninger, A., Carbon, C. C., & Leder, H. (2003). Expert face processing: specialization and constraints. In: Schwarzer, G., & Leder, H. (Eds). Development of Face Processing. Göttingen: Hogrefe, 81–97.
Schyns, P. G., & Rodet, L. (1997). Categorization creates functional features. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory and Cognition, 23: 681–96.
Shiffrin, R. M., & Lightfoot, N. (1997). Perceptual learning of alphanumeric-like characters. In: Goldstone, R. L., Schyns, P. G. & Medin, D. L. (Eds.). The Psychology of Learning and Motivation, Volume 36. San Diego, CA: Academic Press, 45–82.
Shiffrin, R. M., & Schneider, W. (1977). Controlled and automatic human information processing: II. Perceptual learning, automatic attending, and a general theory. Psychological Review, 84: 127–90.
Sloman, S. A. (1996). The empirical case for two systems of reasoning. Psychological Bulletin, 119: 3–21.
Squire, L. R. (1994). Declarative and nondeclarative memory. In: Schacter, D. L. & Tulving, E. (Eds.). Memory Systems 1994. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 204–31.
Stanovich, K. (2009). What Intelligence Tests Miss. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.
Sternberg, R. J. (Ed). (2002). Why Smart People Can Be So Stupid. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.
Tanaka, J. W. (2001). The entry point of face recognition: evidence for face expertise. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 130: 534–43.
Tanaka, J. W., & Curran, T. (2001). A neural basis for expert object recognition. Psychological Science, 12: 43–7.
Tansley, P., Kakar, S., Withey, S., & Butler, P. (2007). Visuospatial and technical ability in the selection and assessment of higher surgical trainees in the London deanery. Annual Royal College of Surgery England, 89: 591–5.
Valk, J. P. J., & Eijkman, E. G. J. (1984). Analysis of eye fixations during the diagnostic interpretation of chest radiographs. Medical and Biological Engineering and Computing, 22: 353–60.
Wood, B. P. (1999). Visual expertise. Radiology, 211: 1–3.
Woollett, K., & Maguire, E. A. (2009). Navigational expertise may compromise anterograde associative memory. Neuropsychologia, 47: 1088–95.
Yue, J. (2007). Spatial visualization by isometric view. Engineering Design Graphics Journal, 71: 5–19.