Letter | Published:

A psychological analysis of observation in geology


ANALYTICAL methods of experimental psychology applied to observations of geological data reveal that what geologists perceive in, and remember of, rocks is not necessarily the same as what is actually there. For example, when observing folds, professionals give more attention to antiforms than synforms and tend to remember cleavage fans as they ought to be rather than as they are.

Access optionsAccess options

Rent or Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


All prices are NET prices.


  1. 1

    Ramsay, J. G., Folding and fracturing of rocks (McGraw Hill, New York, 1967).

Download references

Author information

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Further reading


By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.