Effects and Laws

Throughout the years, I’ve heard various people mention effects and laws that apply to our everyday thoughts and actions. Here’s a few, and I hope to add more to the compilation over time. They were mostly mentioned by scientists in academia, and are therefore likely quite prevalent in this faculty or setting.

Better-than-average effect: The name says it. Most people think they are better than average in mentioned fields. This is simply, mathematically impossible. This effect is related to the…

Dunning-Kruger effect: “incompetent people think they’re amazing“. More clearly, “the knowledge and intelligence that are required to be good at a task are often the same qualities needed to recognize that one is not good at that task—and if one lacks such knowledge and intelligence, one remains ignorant that one is not good at that task” said Dunning. As for those who are more competent, they often think that others are equally knowledgeable/intelligent. To clarify, we all go through this effect, because we are all incompetent in at least something. Some say that this effect is, at least in part, cultural.

Law of diminishing returns: As an input increases in quantity, there will be a point when the per-unit output or return will decrease, all other inputs kept constant. In other words, the more one puts in, the less what one gets out increases. The more Arabic one has already learned, the less Arabic that one learns in the future is actually useful. A fluent Arabic speaker would not be as thankful for learning a new word or expression…this expression would definitely not be “I need food.”