Originally Posted by Lyte
Cognitive Neuroscience is a merge between Psychology and Neuroscience. Some topics that are studied in this field include unconsciousness, visual illusions, and cognitive biases.
I became interested in the field when I took an undergraduate course in visual illusions and learned how illusions can reveal the many 'shortcuts' your brain takes to reveal your perception of the world. As a life-time video gamer, I started to make connections between Psychology and Neuroscience and how they could improve video game design. In fact, a scholarship during my PhD from Penny Arcade helped me transition from the academic sciences to the gaming industry.
For example, did you know that negative events carry more weight in your memories? This is known as negativity bias and is part of the reason players say things such as, "All of my games have been terribly lopsided lately" or "I get leavers in almost every single game." Being the imperfect beings we are, we give more weight to negative events like lopsided games or leavers and it makes it seem like they are far more frequent. However, knowing these biases... we can start to combat them to give our players a more enjoyable experience--sometimes without even changing the game itself.
Interesting. I've always had a passion for psychology, growing up around it pretty much my entire life. Cognitive bias though has always been a personal favored topic. Self-serving bias and it's applications to online gaming has been a huge point of interest in the last few years.
Self-serving bias for those who don't know is the tendency to attribute one's own successes to internal stuffs (I won because I'm just skilled) and their losses to situations (My support sucked or I just woke up, so of course I'm not playing my best). It also covers the tendency to attribute other people's successes to circumstance (Ahri is just op, takes no real skill) while attributing their failures to internal causes (You suck noob)
When I was picking my degree (ward of the state means no co-signer for loans, etc, just a pell grant. I had to be rather careful with my degree choice, I don't get a second chance) I actually was fighting between a video game oriented field, or something more focused around psychology, but eventually settled with computer information systems simply in the hopes that a general area of study would help me secure employment somewhere, where I could then go back and specialize in the unforeseeable future. Would have been nice to know that there were areas where psychology and gaming meet in a career respect.