How Judges Decide Cases

Take this Cognitive Reflection Test from MIT professor Shane Frederick and see how you score.  If you get them right, you are cognitive, meaning you concentrate and deliberate before making a decision.  Get them wrong and you are intuitive, making fast and spontaneous decisions.  Answers are in the comment section below.

1.  A bat and a ball cost $1.10 total.  The bat costs $1.00 more than the ball.  How much does the ball cost?

2.  If it takes five machines five minutes to make five widgets, how long would it take 100 machines to make 100 widgets?

3.  In a lake, there’s a patch of lily pads.  Every day, the patch doubles in size.  If it takes 48 days for the patch to cover the entire lake, how long would it take for the patch to cover half of the lake?

Vanderbilt professor Chris Guthrie decided to ask about 300 judges at a conference to take the test in 2008.  The results?  Only 15% got all three answers right.  The majority of judges appear to make hasty and intuitive decisions.