Monday, September 5, 2016

Academics, Doctors, and Superego

Arah Dauer Wk 1 Reading Reaction
This week's reading included a chapter that had a significant amount of cognitive psychology covered. Since HCI is really a marriage of the creative as well as the scientific, I am glad that the Science of the Mind chapter went into such detail regarding the experimentation on humans and their inner ear and central executive. Initially, the discussion of cognitive psychology's roots in introspection made me think there would be a lack of scientific principle in the field. However after the contrast of current practices of experimentation my fears subsided.  
This will help me in my research project, because I am curious to find cognitive studies on physicians and see what affects their ability to perform in the electronic health record. I was able to find an article that discussed surgeons specifically, but the data was too generalized to be meaningful. Perhaps there are some people that are shocked to find out surgeons have an ego?
I found the Human Computer Interaction and Human Factors Engineering chapter selections on point with most of the research I did prior to deciding on this degree: creative meets technical, the money invested in good design will save so much more than trying to fix systems after implementation, what works for a user may not work for the group, confounding factors such as location, physical environment, etc. This reading made me look forward to diving into the user design experience or lack thereof.

Do you have a link to the article about surgeons you mentioned in the second paragraph? Does the study actually draw conclusions about or discuss the study of the ego? If that intrigues you, the Freudian psychoanalysis of ego vs. super ego may also be interesting to you. I do not have a background in psychology and frankly the way people think or why they do the things that they do is often foreign or confusing for me, but I find these types of studies fascinating. Basically it describes the concept of ego in three main categories, conscious, preconscious, and unconsciousness. I've also heard of this same concept described as what you think of yourself, what others think of you, what you think others think of you. It is a measure of perception versus a shared perceived external reality with emphasis on physical and psychological aspects.  
As graduate students we have a similar stress load to doctors, or at least most people in graduate school could be perceived as intelligent, dedicated, and under high pressure anxiety for achievement. What we do not have in common with physicians and surgeons is the understanding that our very work may effect lives or even put them on the line if we do not maintain a high level of competency. I know a lot of pilots though who do feel that same stress, and there is an old saying that you should never get on a plane with a pilot who isn't cocky about flying. 
This thought process lead me down a rabbit whole in search of similar papers, I may need to learn how to do better Google searches for peer review journals. I wanted to not only find a couple of articles about high anxiety performance and how it relates to ego, but also relate this information back to HCI. 
I found multiple relevant articles but two stuck with me, unfortunately I was only able to read the abstract of the article in Science Direct (McKenzie, Tindell, 1993), but it seems to at least discuss and investigate the relationship of anxiety and superego with a focus on neuroticism. 


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Not to be confused with   Neurosis.
Neuroticism is a fundamental personality trait in the study of psychology characterized by anxiety, fear, moodiness, worry, envy, frustration, jealousy, and loneliness.[1] Individuals who score high on neuroticism are more likely than average to experience such feelings as anxietyangerenvyguilt, and depressed mood.[2] They respond more poorly tostressors, are more likely to interpret ordinary situations as threatening, and minor frustrations as hopelessly difficult. They are often self-conscious and shy, and they may have trouble controlling urges and delaying gratification. High neuroticism indexes a risk constellation that exists prior to the development and onset of any of the "common mental disorders",[3][4] such as depressionphobiapanic disorder, other anxiety disorders, and substance use disorder—symptoms that traditionally have been calledneuroses.[4][5][6][7][8]

  • Gideon Keren, Charles Lewis. (1993). A Handbook for Data Analysis in the Behaviorial Sciences: Volume 1.
  • James McKenzie, Gary Tindell. (1993). Anxiety and academic achievement: Further Furneaux factor findings
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Senior UI/UX web designer at a large-scale IT contractor for defense, intelligence, and civilian government solutions. Adventurist and certified Yoga / Barre Instructor. Love aviation, books, and travel.Prefer long light hearted series in mystery, comedy, fantasy, and romance.

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