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  • An informal, usually experientially based, mechanism used to solve a problem or make a decision without analytic reasoning. Heuristics can be thought of as intuitive judgments that are made readily accessible by environmental stimuli. Heuristics were originally described by Tversky and Kahneman as simple and efficient rules, either genetically imprinted or learned, that humans use to make decisions when faced with infor mation that is either too complex or incomplete. For more information, see Kahneman, Tversky, and Slovic (1982).

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