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PSYC FPX 3520 Assessment 3 Thinking, Feeling, and Believing


Capella University

PSYC FPX 3520 Introduction to Social Psychology

Prof. Name


Thinking, Feeling, and Believing: A Case Study

This case study examines the unethical practices of Frank, a psychologist, who deceives his patient, Eduardo, by manipulating symptoms to fit his narrative. Frank’s actions not only endanger Eduardo’s well-being but also raise serious ethical issues about his professional behavior.

Confirmation Bias in Psychological Practice

The central concept in this case study is confirmation bias, a cognitive bias where individuals favor information that confirms their preconceptions while ignoring contradicting evidence (Baumeister & Bushman, 2020). Frank exhibits confirmation bias by emphasizing symptoms of depression in Eduardo and overlooking signs of Dependent Personality Disorder.

Research Support

Confirmation bias is well-documented in decision-making processes. Rajsic, Wilson, and Pratt (2015) conducted studies showing that individuals tend to prioritize information that aligns with their expectations during visual search tasks. Similarly, Kappes et al. (2019) explored how people use others’ opinions, demonstrating a tendency to dismiss conflicting information.

Application of Confirmation Bias

Frank’s bias is clear as he selectively focuses on symptoms that indicate major depression in Eduardo, disregarding signs of Dependent Personality Disorder. This selective perception distorts his conclusions and poses significant risks to Eduardo’s mental health.

PSYC FPX 3520 Assessment 3 Thinking, Feeling, and Believing

Ethical Reasoning Application

Frank’s rationalizations for his actions serve to mask the unethical nature of his behavior, allowing him to justify deceitful practices under the pretense of future success as a psychologist. These rationalizations obscure the moral consequences of his actions, compromising his professional integrity (Mulder & van Dijk, 2020).

Critical Thinking Application

Frank’s selective gathering of information hampers his critical thinking. By filtering data and ignoring the broader context, he undermines the accuracy and relevance of his assessments (Paul & Elder, 2012).


Baumeister, R. F., & Bushman, B. J. (2020). Social psychology and human nature (5th ed.). Cengage Limited.

Kappes, A., Harvey, A. H., Lohrenz, T., Montague, P. R., & Sharot, T. (2019). Confirmation bias in the utilization of others’ opinion strength. Nature News. Retrieved from

Mulder, L. B., & van Dijk, E. (2020). Moral rationalization contributes more strongly to escalation of unethical behavior among low moral identifiers than among high moral identifiers. Frontiers in Psychology. Retrieved from

Paul, R., & Elder, L. (2012). Critical thinking: Intellectual standards essential to reasoning well within every domain of human thought, part Two. Journal of Developmental Education. Retrieved from

PSYC FPX 3520 Assessment 3 Thinking, Feeling, and Believing

Rajsic, J., Wilson, D. E., & Pratt, J. (2015). Confirmation bias in visual search. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance. Retrieved from

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