Ignorance Of Our Own Ignorance - Deepstash

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The Dunning-Kruger Effect: The Paradox of Our Own Ignorance

Ignorance Of Our Own Ignorance

Ignorance Of Our Own Ignorance

The Dunning-Kruger Effect is the mind's tendency to overestimate one’s own knowledge or competence and to underestimate one’s own ignorance. It usually occurs when the information is unknown to us, with one peculiar complication: The information that something is unknown to us is also unknown to us.

The Dunning-Kruger Effect is essentially a meta-layer of ignorance. Example: drivers who pride themselves as being competent and safe drivers making highly unsafe driving errors.

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SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

The Blindspot Of Ignorance And Incompetence
The Blindspot Of Ignorance And Incompetence

Humans are not very good at self-evaluation and may be unaware of how ignorant they are. This psychological deficiency is known as the Dunning-Kruger Effect, where an illu...

Developing Meta-Cognition

Meta-cognitive skills are developed by:

  1. Self-reflection by journaling, along with a review of your progress and personal changes.
  2. Using second-level thinking by asking yourself about potential blind spots or missing information.
  3. Using mental models for testing your assumptions and separating the signal from the noise.
  4. Taking notes using an app or even pen and paper, trying to visualize your knowledge using diagrams and doodles.
  5. Being aware of the various cognitive biases that can cloud our thinking, and learning more about them.

Meta-cognition is the essential requirement to be able to gauge one’s competence or the lack of it.

The Dunning-Kruger effect

It's a type of cognitive bias in which people believe that they are smarter and more capable than they really are. Inexperience masquerades as expertise. And we tend to see it in other people,...

Intellectual humility

It means being actively curious about your blind spots. It’s not about lacking confidence, or self-esteem. It’s about entertaining the possibility that you may be wrong and being open to learning from the experience of others.

Why we need more intellectual humility
  1. Our culture promotes and rewards overconfidence and arrogance; 
  2. At the same time, when we are wrong — out of ignorance or error — and realize it, our culture doesn’t make it easy to admit it. Humbling moments too easily can turn into moments of humiliation.
Metacognition
Metacognition

It is the awareness and understanding of your own thought processes. Metacognition refers to the processes used in self-regulation, self-monitoring, and self-reflection. People who...

Seek to overcome meta-ignorance

Most people lack insight about the weaknesses in their intellectual or emotional skills. They overestimate their abilities, which leads to over-confidence.

  • There are always things we know we know, and things we know we don't know - those provide the clues that can help you develop metacognition skills.
  • Check your assumptions. Intellectual humility can greatly improve your metacognition skill.
Psychologically smart questions improve metacognition skills

When you ask yourself better questions, you are forced to think deeply about your tasks and problems and the best way forward.

  • Before a task: Is this similar to a previous task? What do I want to accomplish? What should I do first?
  • During the task: Am I on the right track? What can I improve? Who can I ask for help?
  • After a task: What worked well? What could I have done better? Can I use this for other situations?