Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore

Enhancing the human potential. Psychological interventions in different settings


Improving humans’ skills is a task which psychologists are often requested to address. The question is: How the enhancement of capacities can be reached? Experimental investigation can provide some insights about the most productive ways to foster the development of both domain-specific and domain-general competences.

The aim of this book is to provide reader some examples of how basic research can inspire interventions. Four main kinds of approaches which a psychologist might employ to empower skills have been selected: mental visualization, background music, reflection, and technological tools. The attempt is to present a wide and diversified set of examples. The skills which are taken into accounts concern comprehension, memory, reasoning, problem solving, decision making, creativity, and motor behavior. The implementation settings of such skills which are considered are education, school instruction, professional training, and rehabilitation. People possibly benefiting from interventions based on the findings of the experiments reported here range from kindergarten children to elder adults and belong both to healthy and clinical populations.