Monday, June 04, 2012

The trouble with brain scans

A lot of people are skeptical of psychology, but suddenly become completely gullible when an article contains pictures of brain scans. A lot of that work is bogus also.

Vaughan Bell writes in the UK Guardian:
Neuroscientists have long been banging their heads on their desks over exaggerated reports of brain scanning studies. Media stories illustrated with coloured scans, supposedly showing how the brain works, are now a standard part of the science pages and some people find them so convincing that they are touted as ways of designing education for our children, evaluating the effectiveness of marketing campaigns and testing potential recruits. Recently, to the chagrin of French scientists, politicians called for neuro-imaging to be used in the courts to decide on the guilt of criminals, after the technology made its dubious debut in the legal systems of India, Italy and the US.
Another neuroscientist explains the details.

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