Out of all of the things I learned through this semester in psychology I think the main idea that will stick with me is scientific thinking. It is an important topic I believe because it enables us to not only evaluate claims that are made in the scientific community but also in everyday life. Whether I read a claim in a magazine that listening to a tape while sleeping will help you learn a second language, or if I have a friend who swears he saw a UFO I will be able to use the six principles of scientific thinking to ensure that I look at the situation in the correct manner before jumping to an incorrect conclusion.
The six principles of scientific thinking that I will forever use for the rest of my life are Ruling Out Rival Hypotheses, Correlation vs. Causation, Falsifiability, Replicability, Extraordinary Claims, and Occam's Razor. Using these six principles I will be able to dissect all of the claims I come across by seeing if there are other hypotheses to explain it, or by making sure that I didn't make the mistake of confusing correlation between to variables and the actual causes of them. I could also make sure the claim has the possibility of being proven false. Additionally, by looking to see if the claim has been repeated and had the same outcomes. If the claim is extraordinary, then I could sure it has just as extraordinary evidence to prove it, or finally by ruling it out with a simpler explanation for the claim.
I will forever have a new attitude about approaching the world and all the claims made in it by using the six simple principles of scientific thinking that I have learned from this class.