Information Processing

A common finding in studies of expert cognition is that information processing is less costly for experts than for novices. For example, expert waiters and chess players have exceptional memory skills. Their memory allows more efficient encoding of task-specific information; if they wanted to, experts could search and sit cheaply through more information. But empirical studies show that experts use less information than novices, rather than more, in auditing  financial analysis  and product choice.

Experts use more knowledge. Experts often search contingently, for limited sets of variables, because they know a great deal about their domains. Experts per- form a kind of diagnostic reasoning, matching the cues in a specific case to prototypes in a casual brand of hypothesis testing. Search is contingent be- cause different sets of cues are required for each hypothesis test. Search is limited because only a small set of cues are relevant to a particular hypothesis.

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