Cognitive biases

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Unthinking your thinking: How Leopard Docs can change their spots.

Having difficulty maintaining your general practice skills, and/or having difficulty completing assessment requirements? We do become more set in our ways as we become older and wiser.   Most of the time this is an advantage, but not when completing GP Assessments. It is well documented in the literature that the following factors negatively influence GP …

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Cracking the curriculum – the KEY to RACGP exam success

Doctor’s are very clever human beings – so why do we struggle with assessment, and in particular, why do we feel that it doesn’t measure our clinical practice accurately? The answer lies in Johari’s window which is a framework to understand the ‘self’.  Understanding the RACGP curriculum is the KEY to looking through Johari’s window. …

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Do you see the forest or the trees? Clinical reasoning and the KFP.

It is a wonderful experience when you are listening to a speaker and the ‘switch flicks on’.  It might be the way they are speaking, the knowledge they are conveying, and/or the contribution of other participants that connects all the circuits together to light up your cognition.   I had such an experience this week during …

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Trumping the KFP – 10 tips for the perfect hand

With the Key Features Exam only a week away, the time for study planning and deep learning is long past.   The focus now should be on successfully ‘playing the game’ to be successful. Here are some critical points to remember when approaching the KFP: It is a method by which the key decision-making steps in …

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How “curiosity can kill the cat”

Inquisitiveness can lead one into dangerous situations Whilst curiosity is not in truth a cognitive bias, I though it worth considering as part of these series of blogs exploring clinical reasoning and cognitive biases.  Curiosity is an essential trait in medical practitioners and health professionals more broadly.  Dyche and Epstein (2011) discuss the importance of curiosity to …

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Retreat! It’s a zebra…

And the cognitive bias of the week is…..ZEBRA RETREAT!  In my previous blogs I’ve been exploring the importance of generating a broad differential list early in the diagnostic process.  This is particularly important to mitigate against biases such as premature closure and affective bias (‘gut-feel’).  If we have generated a good differential list, it should …

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