Be Aware of Bias Before Taking Exams: Lessons from a Flight Disaster

  • Thread starter Slimy0233
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Slimy0233
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Recently I was watching a documentary on how expectation bias caused a pilot error during a flight which ended up in disaster for everyone aboard. Now, obviously, these biases manifest in our daily lives very frequently thought their consequences might not be as severe most of the times.

While going through my maths assignment I did a few months ago, I realized that I have had many errors which could be at least mildly attributed to expectation bias and I am pretty sure you have had such experiences as well, now, what major biases should one be aware of before sitting for a physics exam.

Sometimes, when I "knew" the answer because I had seen the "right" options for the previous question, I would not put in as much effort and just give an answer which matched the "right" options. I didn't actively disregard any facts while choosing this option, I just didn't remember them. Turns out the "right" option was wrong and I had made mistakes which had I not seen the "right" option before I would have known about. Now, of c, this won't happen in exams, but yeah, expectation bias is pretty common anyways.

Also, thank you for your answers in advance!
 
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  • #2
I found this article on expectation bias in flying

https://www.aviationfile.com/flight... foremost, it can,Airlines Flight 173 in 1978.

There are many cases where some apparent minor fact was ignored or discounted but which could have saved the day. I think this happens all the time but we seldom notice it.

In program develop, it’s not uncommon to collect a bunch of facts when diagnosing a problem creating a theory of what’s wrong from most of the facts only to discover what really happened and how those ignored facts explained the truth if only we had listened to them.

I had one such software bug that I simply couldn’t get rid of. I scoured my program looking for what was wrong. The one thing I hadn’t considered until late in the game was that another developer had changed a standardized file format (a file format used in the public domain for geographic maritime data) in a library I was using.

It was something they shouldn’t have done but I got the blame since my demo code was broken and theirs had been working for awhile already. When I fixed the error back to what it should have been, it broke their code oops and then there was a lot of yelling.

The titan sub disaster contains elements of expectation bias and warning signs that were ignored with a fatal outcome for the crew.
 

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