Cognitive Neuroscience: the ultimate weapon for TV quiz shows

Fun article by Seed Magazine, WHO WANTS TO BE A COGNITIVE NEUROSCIENTIST MILLIONAIRE? (Thanks, Stephanie!).

A cognitive neuroscience postgrad at Boston University relates his experience in Who Wants to Be A Millionaire? through the lenses of brain science.

Enjoy the article!-here you have some teasers:

“To prepare, I focused first on memory techniques, the subject of my doctoral dissertation.”

 (Please remember we have moved the blog. The new location of this post is

“If we can recall any fragment of a pattern, our brains tend to automatically fill in the rest.”

“Another cognitive process essential for winning on Millionaire is intuition, or more precisely, knowing how to make decisions based on intuition“… “Cognitive models developed by my advisor Gail Carpenter suggest that a more effective way to evaluate an intuition is to consider its mnemonic associations.”

“One aspect of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? that I completely failed to prepare for was my interaction with Meredith. I never even considered the inevitable repartee between host and contestant. Our department does not put much emphasis on social cognition and social psychology—and besides, wasn’t getting the questions right all that mattered?”

“The Benevolent Meredith is the only entity in the Millionaire studio that the producers did not consciously set up to provoke contestant anxiety.”

“My neurohormones whipped from black misery to shining ebullience, saturating my brain in a boiling cauldron of epinephrine and endorphins.”

Did he win? well, you’ll have to read the article to know…



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