It is a slowly but steadily unfolding story, with more and more evidence in support of it: The story revealing with what other species we share beat induction, a skill that is argued to be fundamental to music.
The ability to synchronize to the beat of the music has been demonstrated in several parrot species and, apparently, one elephant species, supporting the vocal learning and rhythmic synchronization hypothesis, which posits that vocal learning provides a neurobiological foundation for a........ Read more »
Hasegawa, A., Okanoya, K., Hasegawa, T., & Seki, Y. (2011) Rhythmic synchronization tapping to an audio–visual metronome in budgerigars. Scientific Reports. DOI: 10.1038/srep00120
Buffer Going to a relaxing zone in a natural park such as the river, waterfall, lake of garden with virtual reality and doing relaxing exercises supported by a relaxing narrative effectively reduces stress and anxiety. Virtual reality showed better improvements than video or audio although the latter two also reduced stress and anxiety. We found [...]
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Villani, D., & Riva, G. (2011) Does Interactive Media Enhance the Management of Stress? Suggestions from a Controlled Study. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 2147483647. DOI: 10.1089/cyber.2011.0141
Stress has been known to send your marital satisfaction on the decline, but can stress early in a relationship actually create more satisfied couples? Read here to find out.... Read more »
Neff LA, & Broady EF. (2011) Stress resilience in early marriage: Can practice make perfect?. Journal of personality and social psychology, 101(5), 1050-67. PMID: 21688919
Finkel EJ, & Campbell WK. (2001) Self-control and accommodation in close relationships: an interdependence analysis. Journal of personality and social psychology, 81(2), 263-77. PMID: 11519931
Schulz MS, Cowan PA, Cowan CP, & Brennan RT. (2004) Coming home upset: Gender, marital satisfaction, and the daily spillover of workday experience into couple interactions. Journal of family psychology : JFP : journal of the Division of Family Psychology of the American Psychological Association (Division 43), 18(1), 250-63. PMID: 14992625
Image from All Around The House™We all know that meth is a highly addictive, harmful stimulant drug that rots your teeth and makes you paranoid, stupid, unemployed, and homeless -- thereby ruining your life. So just say NO! to meth. Right, kids?Methamphetamine (meth) and other stimulants are best known for their effects on the dopamine system, and hence for their propensity to be reinforcing and addictive. But meth actually increases the release and blocks the reuptake of all three monoamine ........ Read more »
Hart, C., Gunderson, E., Perez, A., Kirkpatrick, M., Thurmond, A., Comer, S., & Foltin, R. (2007) Acute Physiological and Behavioral Effects of Intranasal Methamphetamine in Humans. Neuropsychopharmacology, 33(8), 1847-1855. DOI: 10.1038/sj.npp.1301578
Hart, C., Marvin, C., Silver, R., & Smith, E. (2011) Is Cognitive Functioning Impaired in Methamphetamine Users? A Critical Review. Neuropsychopharmacology. DOI: 10.1038/npp.2011.276
Experience and brutebrainpower enhance programming skill by helping programming knowledgeto build over time, rather than by directly boosting currentperformance, according to a new article in the Journal of IndividualDifferences.Authors Gunnar RyeBergersen and Jan-Eric Gustafsson put 65 professional programmersthrough their paces for two straight days, tackling twelve meatytasks in the Java language to prove their programming skill; this waswhat the study ultimately wanted to better understand.P........ Read more »
Bergersen, G., & Gustafsson, J. (2011) Programming Skill, Knowledge, and Working Memory Among Professional Software Developers from an Investment Theory Perspective. Journal of Individual Differences, 32(4), 201-209. DOI: 10.1027/1614-0001/a000052
Clinical trials of cognitive behavioural psychotherapy (CBT) for depression are often of poor quality - and are no better than trials of the rival psychodynamic school.So says a new American Journal of Psychiatry paper that could prove controversial.CBT is widely perceived as having a better evidence base than other therapies. The "creation myth" of CBT (at least as I was taught it) is that it was invented by a psychoanalyst who got annoyed at the unscientific nature of psychodynamic i.e. Freudi........ Read more »
Nathan C. Thoma et al. (2011) A Quality-Based Review of Randomized Controlled Trials of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy for Depression: An Assessment and Metaregression. American Journal of Psychiatry. info:/
If you've ever witnessed would-be buyers looking around a house, you'll have noticed their observations about each room are usually limited to: "hmm, it's a good size" or "hmm, it's rather small". Little wonder then that home-improvers are so often fixated on making their rooms appear as spacious as possible. Design lore will tell them that to do so, they should paint their ceilings as light as possible, and in particular make the ceiling lighter than the walls. This contrast between ceilings an........ Read more »
Oberfeld, D., Hecht, H., & Gamer, M. (2010) Surface lightness influences perceived room height. The Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 63(10), 1999-2011. DOI: 10.1080/17470211003646161
Buffer Most are afraid of greater online disclosure than offline disclosure. The computer luring us towards more information about ourselves than would probably be safe. Self-disclosure is the voluntary and verbal communication of personal information to a targeted recipient. It has three dimensions: frequency, breadth, and depth. Frequency of self-disclosure refers to the amount of [...]
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Nguyen, M., Bin, Y., & Campbell, A. (2011) Comparing Online and Offline Self-Disclosure: A Systematic Review. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 2147483647. DOI: 10.1089/cyber.2011.0277
When you have to work hard on a task that requires a lot of concentration, do you find yourself losing concentration after a while? If you are studying for an exam, do you have a harder time resisting the delicious snacks sitting next to you on the table? All of these situations have one thing in common - they require willpower, also known as self control or self regulation in the psychology world.
For a long time, the commonly held belief among psychologists was that willpowe........ Read more »
Job, V., Dweck, C., & Walton, G. (2010) Ego Depletion--Is It All in Your Head?: Implicit Theories About Willpower Affect Self-Regulation. Psychological Science, 21(11), 1686-1693. DOI: 10.1177/0956797610384745
Anger he smiles, towering in shiny metallic purple armour.Queen Jealousy, envy waits behind him, her fiery green gown sneers at the grassy ground.Blue are the life giving waters taken for granted, they quietly understand.Once happy, turquoise armies lay opposite ready, but wonder why the fight is on.My red is so confident that he flashes trophies of war and ribbons of euphoria.Orange is young, full of daring but very unsteady for the first go round.My yellow in this case is not so mellow, in fac........ Read more »
Ramachandran VS, Miller L, Livingstone MS, & Brang D. (2011) Colored halos around faces and emotion-evoked colors: A new form of synesthesia. Neurocase. PMID: 22115465
When someone we trust takes us for a ride, the bump back to earth is something we're unlikely to forget. But when we suspiciously reject an offer from someone else, we may never know what we've missed out on due to too little trust. Over time, such asymmetries in feedback can tip us toward an unwarranted cynical stance. It's clear that cynicism is as unhelpful a bias as naivety: it leads to guarded communication, reduced sharing, and more self-serving biases, all of which may cause interac........ Read more »
Tsay, C., Shu, L., & Bazerman, M. (2011) Naïveté and Cynicism in Negotiations and Other Competitive Contexts. The Academy of Management Annals, 5(1), 495-518. DOI: 10.1080/19416520.2011.587283
People with anorexia find comfort in their illness at first, but then it becomes over-powering and they end up battling for control of their own minds. That's according to Sarah Williams and Marie Reid, who conducted an online focus group and email interviews with 14 people recovering from anorexia nervosa, aged 21 to 50 and including two men.
A consistent theme to emerge was that anorexia at first provided a sense of control and identity. The participants recalled enjoying striving for perfect........ Read more »
Williams, S., & Reid, M. (2011) ‘It's like there are two people in my head’: A phenomenological exploration of anorexia nervosa and its relationship to the self. Psychology , 1-18. DOI: 10.1080/08870446.2011.595488
Sapolsky admits that this brilliant lecture is often met with considerable resistance by some religious types. Here, my goal is to dissect his lecture and provide adequate scholarly references to clarify and validate his argument; to reaffirm that his lecture is based on unbiased science.... Read more »
Wright, P., Gill, M., & Murray, R. (1993) Schizophrenia: Genetics and the maternal immune response to viral infection. American Journal of Medical Genetics, 48(1), 40-46. DOI: 10.1002/ajmg.1320480110
Torgersen, Svenn. (1985) Relationship of Schizotypal Personality Disorder to Schizophrenia: Genetics. Schizophrenia Bulletin , 11(4). info:/
Laguerre A, Leboyer M, & Schürhoff F. (2008) [The schizotypal personality disorder: historical origins and current status]. L'Encephale, 34(1), 17-22. PMID: 18514146
Kurotaki, N., Tasaki, S., Mishima, H., Ono, S., Imamura, A., Kikuchi, T., Nishida, N., Tokunaga, K., Yoshiura, K., & Ozawa, H. (2011) Identification of Novel Schizophrenia Loci by Homozygosity Mapping Using DNA Microarray Analysis. PLoS ONE, 6(5). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0020589
Men actually get stupider when given the possible chance of interacting with a woman, study finds... Read more »
Nauts, S., Metzmacher, M., Verwijmeren, T., Rommeswinkel, V., & Karremans, J. (2011) The Mere Anticipation of an Interaction with a Woman Can Impair Men’s Cognitive Performance. Archives of Sexual Behavior. DOI: 10.1007/s10508-011-9860-z
Below some fragments from a talk I gave last week at TEDxAmsterdam with the title: What makes us musical animals. In the talk I try to convince the audience that we all share a predisposition for the perception and appreciation of music, making music second nature to most human beings... Read more »
Zarco, W., Merchant, H., Prado, L., & Mendez, J. (2009) Subsecond Timing in Primates: Comparison of Interval Production Between Human Subjects and Rhesus Monkeys. Journal of Neurophysiology, 102(6), 3191-3202. DOI: 10.1152/jn.00066.2009
A taxonomy of Basic emotions derived from India Rasas. ... Read more »
The Achilles heel of education research is that findings tend to have a hard time moving from the journal page to the classroom. Nowhere is this more apparent than with the work on theories of intelligence, one the most simple, high-impact, and thoroughly researched concepts in educational psychology. Studies show that when students believe intelligence [...]... Read more »
Hong, H., & Lin-Siegler, X. (2011) How learning about scientists' struggles influences students' interest and learning in physics. Journal of Educational Psychology. DOI: 10.1037/a0026224
Atheists are a pretty disliked bunch of people in North America. Most atheists will be aware of polling data that puts them at the bottom of the loathing pile.
Question is, what's driving that loathing? Will Gervais (University of British Columbia, Canada), who's previously published some fascinating research into this topic, is back with some more research (co-authored by another couple of names familiar to this blog: Azim Shariff and Ara Norenzayan).
Gervais' basic hypothesis is that prejudi........ Read more »
Gervais, W., Shariff, A., & Norenzayan, A. (2011) Do you believe in atheists? Distrust is central to anti-atheist prejudice. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 101(6), 1189-1206. DOI: 10.1037/a0025882
I haven’t blogged in a while – it has been an extremely intense couple of months here and clients always come first. But did you assume that’s why I hadn’t been blogging? We all view the world through our own … Continue reading
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Like the rest of the nation (and some would say, the world), I have been asking myself over and over again why this kolaveri kolaveri kolaveri di. And in addition to that I have been asking myself why the heck does this happen to us in the first place. Now if you are not aware [...]... Read more »
Beaman, C., & Williams, T. (2010) Earworms (stuck song syndrome): Towards a natural history of intrusive thoughts. British Journal of Psychology, 101(4), 637-653. DOI: 10.1348/000712609X479636
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