Individuals Tend To Cooperate if they Have High Mind Reading Capability, Study Shows 

In Education

Individuals’ mind reading abilities have been found to correlate with their cooperation skills, as per a study conducted by researchers from the University of Birmingham. The study revealed that individuals who possess strong mind reading abilities, which involve comprehending and empathizing with the emotions and intentions of others, tend to excel in collaborative endeavors, even when working with unfamiliar individuals.

Mind reading ability plays a role in cooperation

The qualities known as “theory of mind,” which are unrelated to intelligence, can be enhanced through training programs. These programs can promote better cooperation in various settings such as workplaces, schools, and colleges.

Roksana Markiewicz, lead study author, said that as a psychologist people often jokingly as if reading minds is possible. Although it is in a light headed manner, the researcher explains that humans actually possess these qualities. Roksana said that this was demonstrated in their recent study and the qualities are instrumental when it comes to cooperation.

In a study published in Experimental Psychology: LMC, researchers examined theory of mind in more than 400 participants. The participants were divided into pairs and engaged in communication games during a zoom call with a researcher. Each player had visual clues on their screen that their partner couldn’t see. The players had to effectively communicate about the clues and work together to solve a puzzle.

Individuals with high theory of mind capability cooperate effectively

The study found that players with high theory of mind abilities, paired with others who also had high scores, cooperated more effectively compared to those paired with low theory of mind abilities. The researchers propose that this is due to their enhanced ability to align their thinking and quickly recover from misalignment.

According to the researchers, individuals with low ToM abilities experienced more frequent failures in cooperation. This was attributed to their difficulty in aligning their thinking, resulting in increased mistakes and a decreased ability to recover from them.

Roksana concluded that the study demonstrated that cooperation is not all about the individual. Even if one is good at mind reading, it is prudent they cooperate with an individual with similar abilities.

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