Social observation

Pay attention to people's ordinary behavior.

What clues does it offer?

Use case

teaching

Humans benefit tremendously from technology and other cultural products, but learning how to use them can be hard. Teaching is thus central to human cultural transmission. Interestingly, teaching itself is a cultural inheritance: we learn how to teach by internalizing rules and standards from those around us. What are these rules? Clues might come from ordinary language. For example, if a child asks, “Do you know how to tie a shoelace?”, you might respond by showing her how to tie it. What can such observations teach us?

In action

Understanding and Explanation

Telling, Showing and Knowing

More Methods

Behavioral experiments

Mind control