Cognitive Models

Part of the The Depressive Illness Series book series (DISS, volume 2)


By the criterion of refutability (Popper, 1963), cognitive models of behavior may appear to be outside the domain of scientific inquiry. The cognitive researcher is hampered by the difficult task of developing experimental paradigms that translate intangible internal processes into the language of physical (e.g., behavioral, physiological, etc.) phenomena that can be subjected to empirical testing. Ironically, such complications may be no more problematic than the challenges confronting the neuropharmacologist or comparative biologist who works with animal models of psychiatric disorder (see Chapter 1). The scientist struggles in his own domain with the risk of presuming a false parallelism between the properties of two species. Hypotheses that meet the criteria of refutability call for methods of experimental control that maximize the internal reliability and validity of findings. At each level of scientific investigation (whether at the subatomic, molecular, biochemical, behavioral, or cognitive level) there are unique challenges in meeting the criteria for an empirical science.


Cognitive Model Attributional Style Mood Induction Inescapable Shock Attributional Style Questionnaire 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryCornell University Medical CollegeNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral ScienceNorthwestern University Institute of PsychiatryChicagoUSA

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