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  • January 19, 2015
  • 05:32 AM
  • 186 views

Interfering With Traumatic Memories of the Boston Marathon Bombings

by The Neurocritic in The Neurocritic

The Boston Marathon bombings of April 15, 2013 killed three people and injured hundreds of others near the finish line of the iconic footrace. The oldest and most prominent marathon in the world, Boston attracts over 20,000 runners and 500,000 spectators. The terrorist act shocked and traumatized and unified the city.What should the survivors do with their traumatic memories of the event? Many with disabling post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) receive therapy to lessen the impact of the trauma........ Read more »

  • January 19, 2015
  • 04:28 AM
  • 173 views

Taking care of mum following receipt of an offspring autism diagnosis

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

The commentary by Elizabeth Karp & Alice Kuo [1] recently published in JAMA brought my attention back to the 2014 findings from Emily Feinberg and colleagues [2] (open-access) reporting on: "positive effects of PSE [problem-solving education] in reducing parenting stress and depressive symptoms during the critical postdiagnosis period" - that is, moves to taking care of maternal mental health after a child receives a diagnosis of autism or autism spectrum disorder (ASD).This i........ Read more »

  • January 19, 2015
  • 12:25 AM
  • 216 views

Magic Mushroom Users who get High without Drugs

by Scott McGreal in Eye on Psych

A study comparing peak experiences - what a person considers their most wonderful life experience - in psilocybin users with non-users, found that some users said their most intense peak experience had occurred when they were not under the influence of drugs, even though it involved a profound alteration of consciousness similar to that produced by psilocybin. One possible implication of this study is that psilocybin could have lasting effects on a person’s ability to enter altered states of c........ Read more »

Cummins C, & Lyke J. (2013) Peak experiences of psilocybin users and non-users. Journal of psychoactive drugs, 45(2), 189-94. PMID: 23909006  

  • January 17, 2015
  • 05:25 AM
  • 184 views

What can physical activity do for ADHD?

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

In answer to the question posed in the title of this post, I might refer you to the paper by Susanne Ziereis & Petra Jansen [1] who concluded that results of their research study looking at the impact of two 12-week training programs "support the hypothesis that long-term PA [physical activity] has a positive effect on executive functions of children with ADHD [attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder]."That's the funny thing about birthdays, they're kind of an annual thi........ Read more »

  • January 16, 2015
  • 11:08 AM
  • 284 views

Know your brain: Reward system

by neurosci in Neuroscientifically Challenged

Where is the reward system?The term reward system refers to a group of structures that are activated by rewarding or reinforcing stimuli (e.g. addictive drugs). When exposed to a rewarding stimulus, the brain responds by increasing release of the neurotransmitter dopamine and thus the structures associated with the reward system are found along the major dopamine pathways in the brain. The mesolimbic dopamine pathway is thought to play a primary role in the reward system. It connects the ventral........ Read more »

Wise RA. (1998) Drug-activation of brain reward pathways. Drug and alcohol dependence, 51(1-2), 13-22. PMID: 9716927  

  • January 16, 2015
  • 07:02 AM
  • 223 views

Conspiracy beliefs and the relation to emotional uncertainty

by Rita Handrich in The Jury Room

It is no secret that we are intrigued by conspiracy theorists here at The Jury Room. Not only are they good for entertainment value during pretrial research, they are also very useful to help us plug holes in case narrative that could derail deliberations. When it comes to the actual trial though, conspiracy enthusiasts are […]

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  • January 16, 2015
  • 04:52 AM
  • 224 views

The gut and 15q Duplication Syndrome

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

"The results indicate that GI [gastrointestinal] symptoms are common in Dup15q syndrome and may have an atypical presentation."Let's just say I'm Frankenstein's monster. And I'm looking for my creator.That was the conclusion reached in the paper by Elias Shaaya and colleagues [1] following a review of medical records for a small-ish group of participants diagnosed with chromosome 15q duplication syndrome (dup15q syndrome), a genetic condition "involving copy number gains of the ma........ Read more »

Shaaya, E., Pollack, S., Boronat, S., Davis-Cooper, S., Zella, G., & Thibert, R. (2015) Gastrointestinal Problems in 15q Duplication Syndrome. European Journal of Medical Genetics. DOI: 10.1016/j.ejmg.2014.12.012  

  • January 16, 2015
  • 04:24 AM
  • 84 views

Reverse psychology: How bad managers inspire team camaraderie

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

An unfair, uncaring manager makes for an uncertain working life, one characterised by stress, absenteeism and poor performance. But new research suggests a silver lining: when the boss is unjust, team members come together.A multi-institution collaboration led by Adam Stoverink presented teams of students with an awkward event. The students thought they’d been recruited to solve tasks for a cash prize, but they were left twiddling their thumbs while waiting for an assigned supervisor to show u........ Read more »

  • January 16, 2015
  • 12:12 AM
  • 63 views

2015: Puppy New Year! Get some science into your dog

by Cobb & Hecht in Do You Believe In Dog?

2015 is a bright and shiny new year for canine science! But first, this face:After being a dog-less household for eight months (you might remember we sadly farewelled Elke in 2013 and gut-wrenchingly, also old man Caleb, in the first half of 2014) we welcomed a new member to the family at the end of 2014. Those paws. Not photoshopped.If I'm honest with you, I'd been stalking PetRescue quietly for a month or so, not really sure if the time was right, but also open to being inspired to m........ Read more »

Hiby E.F., Rooney N.J., & Bradshaw J.W.S. (2004) Dog training methods: their use, effectiveness and interaction with behaviour and welfare. . Animal Welfare, 13(1), 63-70. info:other/http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/ufaw/aw/2004/00000013/00000001/art00010

  • January 15, 2015
  • 09:30 AM
  • 51 views

Psychological Theory and Gamification of Learning

by Richard Landers in NeoAcademic

Gamification, the use of game elements in non-game contexts, is increasingly being implemented in both student and organizational learning initiatives. Many of these efforts are atheoretical, meaning that the teachers using them don’t necessarily have a well-grounded reason for gamifying. Instead, they often gamify with the intention of making learning more “fun.” Unfortunately, 1) not […]The post Psychological Theory and Gamification of Learning appeared first on NeoAcad........ Read more »

Landers, R.N., Bauer, K.N., Callan, R.C., & Armstrong, M.B. (2015) Psychological theory and the gamification of learning. Gamification in Education and Business, 165-186. info:/

  • January 15, 2015
  • 09:00 AM
  • 74 views

Moral mornings: Are we more willing to cheat and lie as the day goes on?

by Katharine Blackwell in Contemplating Cognition

A year or so ago, you might have encountered advice on the news sites to trust others more in the morning, because as the day wears on people become more inclined to lie, cheat, or steal. (Forbes was one place that peddled this particular tidbit ). This idea may not be back in the news now, but it is back in researchers’ minds thanks to a follow-up duet of articles debating what really might be behind any influence of time of day on our moral decisions. So this will be the first part of a ........ Read more »

  • January 15, 2015
  • 07:40 AM
  • 81 views

How to get kids to tell the truth? It's not all about carrot or stick

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

By guest blogger Dan JonesAll parents have to come to terms with the fact that their little angels will, from time to time, act like little devils. They’ll throw tantrums over trivial issues, or they’ll push, hit, bite or scratch other kids. And at some point they’ll start lying about what they’ve done.Lying is perfectly normal among children, not a sign of a sociopath in the making. Many kids start telling the odd fib around their second birthday, and by the time they’re 4 or 5 they........ Read more »

  • January 15, 2015
  • 05:10 AM
  • 216 views

Maternal thyroid autoantibody and offspring autism risk

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

I have, on this blog, previously mentioned the paper by Alan Brown and colleagues [1] suggesting that: "The prevalence of maternal TPO-Ab+ [thyroid peroxidase antibody] was significantly increased in pregnancies giving rise to autism cases (6.15%) compared to controls (3.54%)." It was during some discussion on the suggested diagnosis of Down syndrome disintegrative disorder (see here) and the idea that some signs and symptoms of regressive autism (?) might overlap with TPO antibodies i........ Read more »

Brown, A., Surcel, H., Hinkka-Yli-Salomäki, S., Cheslack-Postava, K., Bao, Y., & Sourander, A. (2015) Maternal thyroid autoantibody and elevated risk of autism in a national birth cohort. Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry, 86-92. DOI: 10.1016/j.pnpbp.2014.10.010  

  • January 14, 2015
  • 03:54 PM
  • 225 views

The hidden neurological impact of explosions on military members

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

More bad news for war Veterans, the brains of some Iraq and Afghanistan combat veterans who survived blasts from improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and died later of other causes show a distinctive honeycomb pattern of broken and swollen nerve fibers throughout critical brain regions, including those that control executive function. The pattern is different from brain damage caused by car crashes, drug overdoses or collision sports, and may be the never-before-reported signature of blast injuri........ Read more »

Ryu J, Horkayne-Szakaly I, Xu L, Pletnikova O, Leri F, Eberhart C, Troncoso JC, & Koliatsos VE. (2014) The problem of axonal injury in the brains of veterans with histories of blast exposure. Acta neuropathologica communications, 2(1), 153. PMID: 25422066  

  • January 14, 2015
  • 10:41 AM
  • 249 views

Journal Club: Birds pick nest materials with camouflage in mind

by GrrlScientist in Maniraptora

SUMMARY: A recent study by a research team in Scotland reveals that birds intentionally choose colour-matching materials to camouflage their nests thereby reducing predation risk. Read more... Read more »

Bailey Ida E., Kate Morgan, Simone L. Meddle, & Susan D. Healy. (2015) Birds build camouflaged nests. The Auk, 132(1), 11-15. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1642/auk-14-77.1  

  • January 14, 2015
  • 10:02 AM
  • 182 views

Imagining walking through a doorway triggers increased forgetting

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

We've all had that experience of going purposefully from one room to another, only to get there and forget why we made the journey. Four years ago, researcher Gabriel Radvansky and his colleagues stripped this effect down, showing that the simple act of passing through a doorway induces forgetting. Now psychologists at Knox College, USA, have taken things further, demonstrating that merely imagining walking through a doorway is enough to trigger increased forgetfulness. Zachary Lawrence and Dani........ Read more »

  • January 14, 2015
  • 08:30 AM
  • 249 views

Do Hand-Reared Wolves get Attached to their Humans?

by CAPB in Companion Animal Psychology Blog

Researchers test the bond between captive wolf pups and the humans who rear them.Photo: Geoffrey Kuchera / ShutterstockWe all think our dogs form attachments to us, but previous studies with wolf pups have suggested they don’t attach to their caregiver in the same way. While a 16-week old puppy is already attached to its owner, scientists found the same is not true of a 16-week old wolf. However, the way the wolf pup is raised and the age of testing may have an effect. New research by Nathanie........ Read more »

Hall, N.J., Lord, K., Arnold, A-M.K., Wynne, C.D.L., & Udell, M. (2015) Assessment of attachment behaviours to human caregivers in wolf pups (Canis lupus lupus). Behavioural Processes , 15-21. info:/

Rehn, T., Lindholm, U., Keeling, L., & Forkman, B. (2014) I like my dog, does my dog like me?. Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 65-73. DOI: 10.1016/j.applanim.2013.10.008  

  • January 14, 2015
  • 07:02 AM
  • 234 views

Simple Jury Persuasion: When minority jurors  are not so good for your client

by Doug Keene in The Jury Room

Here’s an odd counter-intuitive research finding. You might think that, if you have a gay or lesbian client, other minorities (like racial or ethnic minorities, for example) would be a good bet for your jury. It only makes sense that those who have experienced discrimination themselves would be more tolerant toward members of other oppressed […]

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  • January 14, 2015
  • 05:11 AM
  • 201 views

Autism research in Jamaica

by Paul Whiteley in Questioning Answers

For the past couple of years I've been tracking some rather interesting publications coming out of data from Jamaica on the topic of autism / autism spectrum disorder (ASD) specifically looking at the possible overlap between genes and various environmental factors. I thought now would be a good time to bring this collection of papers to the blogging table and summarise their findings based on the analysis of data collected from The Jamaican Autism study. The fact that their latest res........ Read more »

Rahbar MH, Samms-Vaughan M, Loveland KA, Pearson DA, Bressler J, Chen Z, Ardjomand-Hessabi M, Shakespeare-Pellington S, Grove ML, Beecher C.... (2012) Maternal and paternal age are jointly associated with childhood autism in Jamaica. Journal of autism and developmental disorders, 42(9), 1928-38. PMID: 22230961  

  • January 13, 2015
  • 06:04 AM
  • 192 views

People may be happier when their neighbourhood fits their personality

by BPS Research Digest in BPS Research Digest

Levels of trait "openness to experience"are higher in central London than otherareas of the city. Image from PNAS. It is surely easier to be happy in some neighbourhoods than others. But a new study suggests one size does not fit all. Based on data from 56,000 Londoners collected by a BBC initiative, Markus Jokela and his colleagues report that the correlations between different personality dimensions and life satisfaction vary across the capital. The researchers say this shows "finding the........ Read more »

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