An experiment to determine the effects of positive and negative user comments to items posted by media organizations on Facebook news channels showed, surprisingly, that the influence of user comments varied depending on the type and number of user comments. Negative comments influenced the persuasiveness of a news article, while positive comments did not, and a high number of likes did not have the expected bandwagon effect.... Read more »
Winter, S., Brückner, C., & Krämer, N. (2015) They Came, They Liked, They Commented: Social Influence on Facebook News Channels. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 18(8), 431-436. DOI: 10.1089/cyber.2015.0005
Alzheimer’s disease is a degenerative brain disorder that is similar to senile dementia except that it begins in the later stages of life, usually after 40 years. Among the first signs and symptoms of the disease are impaired memory along with impaired thought and speech. However, these signs and symptoms appear after a significant damage to the brain.
This disease (along with many other psychiatric problems such as Parkinson’s) can be detected by doctors and experts with the help........ Read more »
Souillard-Mandar et al. (2015) Learning Classification Models of Cognitive Conditions from Subtle Behaviors in the Digital Clock Drawing Test. MLJ. info:/
New research shows that perseverance might be a key character strength when it comes to counterproductive work behaviours. The researchers were interested in finding the character strengths that were most correlated with work performance and counterproductive work behaviours (things like absenteeism, lateness, … Continue reading →... Read more »
Littman-Ovadia, H., & Lavy, S. (2015) Going the Extra Mile: Perseverance as a Key Character Strength at Work. Journal of Career Assessment. DOI: 10.1177/1069072715580322
Here’s a new way to measure our awareness of our own biases in four easy questions. Yes. Four. We are constantly writing about bias here and when we see ways to measure bias it is usually convoluted or prohibitively expensive, or contains language not suitable for courtroom use. This scale, however, is different—it is short […]
The Bias Blind Spot Scale
Is racial bias fueling anti-Obama rhetoric?
The Islamophobia Scale: Measuring our fear of Muslims
... Read more »
Perry, S., Murphy, M., & Dovidio, J. (2015) Modern prejudice: Subtle, but unconscious? The role of Bias Awareness in Whites' perceptions of personal and others' biases. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 64-78. DOI: 10.1016/j.jesp.2015.06.007
If you overheard someone at work refer to you as "a real political operator", would you feel complimented, or alarmed? The latter turns out to be a sensible reaction, as new research suggests that supervisors and colleagues have less faith in the performance of the highly politically skilled.Study authors Ingo Zettler and Jonas Lang noted a conundrum in their field: researchers treat political skill as a uniform good, the more the better, yet a meta-analysis of relevant research (pdf) found a sp........ Read more »
Zettler, I., & Lang, J. (2015) Employees' Political Skill and Job Performance: An Inverted U-Shaped Relation?. Applied Psychology, 64(3), 541-577. DOI: 10.1111/apps.12018
The case report published by Osman Sabuncuoglu and colleagues  (open-access) highlighting the extremes of certain high-risk behaviours potentially associated with autism is the topic of today's brief post.Detailing the very saddest of outcomes whereby a young boy diagnosed with autism and "aggression, violence and poor behavioral control" threw his 18-month old sister out of a window (defenestration) causing her death, the authors draw attention to several issues tied into the extremes o........ Read more »
Osman Sabuncuoglu, Mustafa Yasin IRMAK, Nagehan Ucok Demir, Duygu Murat, Can Tumba, & Yuksel Yilmaz. (2015) Sibling death after being thrown from window by brother with autism: defenestration an emerging high-risk behavior. Case Reports in Psychiatry. info:/
You've heard that romance starts in the kitchen and not in the bedroom. Well, researchers at Drexel University finally have the science to support that saying - but not the way you might think. Researchers found that women's brains respond more to romantic cues on a full stomach than an empty one. The study explored brain circuitry in hungry versus satiated states among women who were past-dieters and those who had never dieted.... Read more »
Ely, A., Childress, A., Jagannathan, K., & Lowe, M. (2015) The way to her heart? Response to romantic cues is dependent on hunger state and dieting history: An fMRI pilot study. Appetite, 126-131. DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2015.06.022
Wikipedia reigns. It’s the world’s most popular online encyclopedia, the sixth most visited website in America, and a research source most U.S. students rely on. But Wikipedia entries on politically controversial scientific topics can be unreliable due to information sabotage.... Read more »
Wilson, A., & Likens, G. (2015) Content Volatility of Scientific Topics in Wikipedia: A Cautionary Tale. PLOS ONE, 10(8). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0134454
The real iron manPharmaceutical technology, and specifically the various research strategies looking at the way that medicines are delivered to the body, is probably not a topic high on most people's list of interests. This area is generally not 'sexy' research insofar as producing headlines about almost miracle interventions for condition X or label Y. Instead, we take for granted that the tablet or capsule we have been given has been formulated and tested or that the nicotine patch that you ma........ Read more »
Stevens, J., Justin Coffey, M., Fojtik, M., Kurtz, K., & Stern, T. (2015) The Use of Transdermal Therapeutic Systems in Psychiatric Care: A Primer on Patches. Psychosomatics. DOI: 10.1016/j.psym.2015.03.007
Earlier this year, there was some interesting research published about board diversity, as it relates to achieving corporate benefits. Specifically: Board diversity improves governance and product development especially in firms led by White men CEOs. There are at least two … Continue reading →... Read more »
Cook, A., & Glass, C. (2014) Do minority leaders affect corporate practice? Analyzing the effect of leadership composition on governance and product development. Strategic Organization, 13(2), 117-140. DOI: 10.1177/1476127014564109
The Kill or Cure website monitors the Daily Mail's attempt to "classify every inanimate object into those that cause cancer and those that prevent it". Like many other media outlets, the Mail is drawn to health news that is contradictory and/or surprising and a perusal of the Kill or Cure website shows that the paper has frequently reported that the same items, such as aspirin or beer, both cause and prevent cancer.Now a study published recently in Science Communication examines t........ Read more »
Chang, C. (2015) Motivated Processing: How People Perceive News Covering Novel or Contradictory Health Research Findings. Science Communication. DOI: 10.1177/1075547015597914
Paediatricians' offices are often adorned with a developmental milestone chart for infants, and they always show the same "normal" age-typical progression, from sitting to crawling to walking. But these expectations (e.g. 25 per cent of infants achieve independent sitting by 5.5 months) are rather misleading because they're derived solely from research on Western babies conducted back in the 1930s and 1940s. A new study, published recently in the Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, aimed to br........ Read more »
Karasik, L., Tamis-LeMonda, C., Adolph, K., & Bornstein, M. (2015) Places and Postures: A Cross-Cultural Comparison of Sitting in 5-Month-Olds. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 46(8), 1023-1038. DOI: 10.1177/0022022115593803
In a previous post on this blog I briefly discussed the research paper from Jesus Castro-Marrero and colleagues  suggesting that "oral CoQ10 [Coenzyme Q10] (200 mg/day) plus NADH [nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NADH)] (20 mg/day) supplementation" might be something useful for some people diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS).Enter then a new paper from Castro-Marrero and colleagues  (open-access available here) building on the original fin........ Read more »
Castro-Marrero J, Sáez-Francàs N, Segundo MJ, Calvo N, Faro M, Aliste L, Fernández de Sevilla T, & Alegre J. (2015) Effect of coenzyme Q10 plus nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide supplementation on maximum heart rate after exercise testing in chronic fatigue syndrome - A randomized, controlled, double-blind trial. Clinical nutrition (Edinburgh, Scotland). PMID: 26212172
Research published earlier this year seems to indicate that when we’re “awed,” we’re more likely to engage in prosocial or altrusitic behaviour. The researchers conducted five different studies: Individuals higher in dispositional tendencies to experience awe exhibited more generosity in an … Continue reading →... Read more »
OK, a few choice words to start: the National Health Insurance Research Database (NHIRD), nationwide cohort study, large participant numbers.That's right. Yet again Taiwan continues to give when it comes to research based on that very useful national health insurance program. Regular readers will already know that I'm a fan of this resource. This time around the results come in the form of the paper published by Yao-Tung Lee and colleagues  (open-access) who suggested that: "Clinicians s........ Read more »
Lee YT, Hu LY, Shen CC, Huang MW, Tsai SJ, Yang AC, Hu CK, Perng CL, Huang YS, & Hung JH. (2015) Risk of Psychiatric Disorders following Irritable Bowel Syndrome: A Nationwide Population-Based Cohort Study. PloS one, 10(7). PMID: 26222511
Decision making in an enormous range of tasks involves the accumulation of evidence in support of different hypotheses. One of the enduring models of evidence accumulation is the Markov random walk (MRW) theory, which assigns a probability to each hypothesis. In an MRW model of decision making, when deciding between two hypotheses, the cumulative evidence for and against each hypothesis reaches different levels at different times, moving particle-like from state to state and only occupying a sin........ Read more »
Kvam, P., Pleskac, T., Yu, S., & Busemeyer, J. (2015) Interference effects of choice on confidence: Quantum characteristics of evidence accumulation. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 201500688. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1500688112
And that toys are important in photographs of adoptable cats.We all assume that internet photos and adverts play an important role in pet adoption these days, and now it’s possible to put a figure on it, at least for cats. 82.5% of people who adopted a cat from a shelter in Western New York said Petfinder strongly or moderately influenced their adoption. The length of time cats waited for adoption varied from 1 to 126 days. Cats whose Petfinder profiles were clicked more than once a day were t........ Read more »
Lampe, R., & Witte, T. (2014) Speed of Dog Adoption: Impact of Online Photo Traits. Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science, 1-12. DOI: 10.1080/10888705.2014.982796
Siettou, C., Fraser, I., & Fraser, R. (2014) Investigating Some of the Factors That Influence “Consumer” Choice When Adopting a Shelter Dog in the United Kingdom. Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science, 17(2), 136-147. DOI: 10.1080/10888705.2014.883924
Workman, M., & Hoffman, C. (2015) An Evaluation of the Role the Internet Site Petfinder Plays in Cat Adoptions. Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science, 1-10. DOI: 10.1080/10888705.2015.1043366
Experts often exhibit "overclaiming" –believing they know things that they don't.If you consider yourself a science buff, see if any of these terms seem familiar: meta-toxin, bio-sexual, retroplex. Ringing any bells? If so, you may be surprised to hear that these terms are entirely made-up. They are “trap items” invented to study overclaiming, the claiming of knowledge you could not possibly possess. If you overclaimed, you’re not alone; one early study showed as many as one in five........ Read more »
Atir, S., Rosenzweig, E., & Dunning, D. (2015) When Knowledge Knows No Bounds: Self-Perceived Expertise Predicts Claims of Impossible Knowledge. Psychological Science, 26(8), 1295-1303. DOI: 10.1177/0956797615588195
I'll freely admit that the paper by Lieve Thienpont and colleagues  (open-access available here) made me feel rather uncomfortable. With the objective of identifying "patterns in euthanasia requests and practices relating to psychiatric patients", authors detailed the experiences of 100 Belgian patients requesting euthanasia - 'the act of deliberately ending a person's life to relieve suffering' - through a retrospective case note review. Euthanasia is legal in Belgium under certain........ Read more »
Thienpont L, Verhofstadt M, Van Loon T, Distelmans W, Audenaert K, & De Deyn PP. (2015) Euthanasia requests, procedures and outcomes for 100 Belgian patients suffering from psychiatric disorders: a retrospective, descriptive study. BMJ open, 5(7). PMID: 26216150
What does intelligence mean to you? Do you believe you were born with a “smartness score” that’s set for life? Or is intelligence something you can build and grow? Say, by improving your study skills? Now, ask yourself another question – why do you believe that? Where did your ideas about the nature of intelligence…
Check out Intelligence: What it Means to You, an original post on Thinker Academy.
... Read more »
Burke, L., & Williams, J. (2012) The impact of a thinking skills intervention on children's concepts of intelligence. Thinking Skills and Creativity, 7(3), 145-152. DOI: 10.1016/j.tsc.2012.01.001
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