Clinical Intuition

Note: These questions are part of a larger data base of questions on module 10. The 
questions are selected to represent the type of question you should expect on unit exam one. You 
can, in fact, expect to see many of these very same questions on that exam. Exam questions, however, 
may deal with topics not covered in the self tests or in lectures but are discussed in your textbook. You 
are responsible for the content of your text book plus the content of lectures, interactive activities, 
& material on the web site.

---- Use these sample questions to test yourself & to practice for the test. ----

According to research evidence, professional clinicians

•  rarely overestimate the predictive powers of their clinical intuition.
 •  rarely fall into the trap of self-confirming diagnoses.
  •  are frequently the victims of illusory correlation.
   •  are not fooled by hindsight analysis 

2. Professional clinical judgment is particularly vulnerable to 

•  illusory correlations. 
 •  self-confirming diagnosis. 
  •  overconfidence bred by hindsight. 
   •  all of these are vulnerabilities. 

3. Following the suicide of someone we care about, feelings of guilt are often magnified by 
•  hindsight bias. 
 •  illusory thinking. 
  •  confirmation bias. 
   •  the fundamental attribution error. 

4. Researchers found that interviewers often test for a trait by 
•  asking those being tested for a general self-evaluation. 
 •  looking for information that will contradict it. 
  •  looking for information that will confirm it. 
   •  doing all of the above. 

5. Research suggests that the prediction of someone’s future academic success is best when 
the prediction is based on 
•  statistics. 
 •  letters of recommendation. 
  •  the judgments of trained admissions officers. 
   •  statistics plus the judgments of trained admissions officers. 

6. Robyn Dawes suggests that clinicians & interviewers express more confidence in their 
intuitive assessments than in statistical data because of 

 • cognitive conceit. 
  • the fundamental attribution error. 
   • unreliability in statistical predictions. 
    • the lack of validity in standardized tests. 

7. An important implication of the research on illusory thinking is that 

 • conventional wisdom is almost always wrong. 
  • intuition really has no legitimate place in doing science. 
   • research psychologists must test their preconceptions before presenting them as truth. 
    •  the scientific method is the only legitimate way to answer significant human questions. 

8. Clinical intuition as a diagnostic & predictive tool is often 

•  ignored. 
 •  overestimated. 
  •  underestimated. 
   •  equated to science. 

9. Science always involves an interplay between ________ & rigorous test. 

•  intuition. 
 •  skepticism. 
  •  agnosticism. 
   •  the scientific method. 

10. Which bias occurs when we selectively notice or focus upon evidence which tends to support 
the things we already believe or want to be true while ignoring that evidence which would serve 
to disconfirm those beliefs or ideas? This bias plays a stronger role when it comes to those 
beliefs which are based upon prejudice, faith, or tradition rather than on empirical evidence.” 

•  hindsight bias 
 •  self-serving bias 
  •  confirmation bias 
   •  fundamental attribution bias 

11. Clinical judgments can also be considered 

 • illusory. 
  • peripheral. 
   • social judgments 
    • wrong judgments 

12. When a "patient" presents with depression, powerlessness, shame, & feelings of unworthiness 
some therapists argue that "people who have been abused have those symptoms, so you were 
probably abused.* This 

•  is insightful. 
 •  illustrates hindsight bias. 
  •  is motivated by illusory correlations. 
   •  is motivated by conformation-seeking bias. 

13. Which of the following is not a problem for clinicians? 

•  Hindsight bias 
 •  Illusory correlations 
  •  Self-confirming bias 
   •  Underestimating their intuition 

14. Self-Confirming Diagnoses are a. k. a.

•  Conformation Bias.
 •  Confirmation Bias. 
  •  Conformation Bias &/or Confirmation Bias 
   •  Hindsight Bias 
                             Social Psychology
                               Robert C. Gates