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  • September 24, 2008
  • 09:35 PM

Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire

by Jrinvictus in cognitivetrammeling

I have always prided myself on my sense to be able to pick up on when people are lying. The way they stand, where their eyes are moving, each of the muscles in their face telling a story, it's just something I have been able to do. It could all just be in my head as well.It's actually one of my two favorite things to do. The other is to try and figure out what personality traits a person is most likely to exhibit. After about thirty minutes of talking to a person, I can usually give them an ........ Read more »

  • September 20, 2008
  • 01:07 PM

I'm Happy to be Mad

by Jrinvictus in cognitivetrammeling

My mom and step-dad live in a rather rough part of Miami and recently their house was robbed. It's actually an interesting story. A policeman happened to be driving by the house and noticed a car in the front yard. That's actually not very odd to see someone parked in their front yard in Miami, but whatever the policeman saw, it didn't look right. Well, his instinct turned out to be correct and he was able to thwart the robbery. The thief's took off running and search dogs and helicopters w........ Read more »

  • September 18, 2008
  • 10:13 AM

Sex-Stereotypes in Video Games and Their Effects

by Jrinvictus in cognitivetrammeling

Too many times, while I lived in Minneapolis, was I dragged to the Library in Dinky Town. I'm not talking about the library where you read books, I'm talking about a bar called the Library. Even though it was not my "scene," I considered it like a library because I learned an extreme amount about male and female interaction each time I went there. The smell of testosterone and estrogen in the air. The boys with their hair spiked, shirts unbuttoned, collars popped and huge smiles smeared acro........ Read more »

  • September 15, 2008
  • 03:30 PM

Even music played before or after a film character is shown affects our perception of their emotion

by Dave Munger in Cognitive Daily

It's now taken as a given that the musical score of a movie can have huge influence on our perception of the movie. From the pulsating terror achieved in films like Psycho and Jaws, to the triumphant victories in Star Wars and Pirates of the Caribbean, it's hard to think about a great film without also being influenced by that film's score. Music is such an important aspect of film that when a group of students was asked to rate the emotions evoked by music in six film excerpts, only a third of ........ Read more »

  • September 12, 2008
  • 05:30 PM

Altruisticly Speaking

by Jrinvictus in cognitivetrammeling

Being a restaurant server for many years, I feel compelled to always tip a ridiculous amount to my server when I eat out. Even then, if it's a person I know, I have to tip them almost twice what I would tip someone I didn't know for fear of being chastised. There has been plenty of research done on this type of altruistic behavior. When in an anonymous situation, people will tend to be more selfish, but when their identity is disclosed to the other party, they immediately begin to give more.J........ Read more »

Jared Piazza, & Jesse M. Bering. (2008) The Effects of Perceived Anonymity on Altruistic Punishment. Evolutionary Psychology, 6(3), 487-501. DOI:  

  • September 11, 2008
  • 01:02 PM

The bloodier the game, the more hostile the gamer

by Dave Munger in Cognitive Daily

One big problem with many of the studies of video game violence is that they compare different games. Sure, people might behave more aggressively after playing Carmaggeddon instead of Tetris -- they're completely different games! What would be more impressive is if we could simply remove some of the violence from a game and see if the violence itself -- rather than, say, the game's storyline -- is what's actually the root of the aggressive behavior.

Fortunately, the standard settings of Mortal ........ Read more »

  • September 10, 2008
  • 12:24 PM

Happiness May Not Be The Best

by Jrinvictus in cognitivetrammeling

There has been a push over the last few years to make sure children are always happy. After all, happiness is the ultimate goal for most people. Although, due to recent research, happiness may actually become a burden in some areas of a person's life. It has been shown in previous studies that the more positive emotions that children show, the longer it takes them to say their first word.It is currently believed that a person who is considered to be in a happy mood uses a top-down strategy to........ Read more »

Simone Schnall, Vikram K. Jaswal, & Christina Rowe. (2008) A hidden cost of happiness in children. Developmental Science, 11(5). DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-7687.2008.00709.x  

  • August 30, 2008
  • 10:10 PM

Hot Chicks Make Men Nervous

by Neural Outlaw in Neural Interface

Yes, really, they do. It's a scientific fact.As someone who has to read a lot of academic science papers, I occasionally come across studies that really should have been funded by the Ministry of the Bleeding Obvious. I mean, really, it makes you wonder what some researchers are thinking when they carry out these sorts of studies, and whether they actually get grants to do this stuff?Here, let me explain. An item in the latest BPS Research Digest let me know of an "eye-catching study that didn't........ Read more »

  • August 21, 2008
  • 11:46 PM

How Representative are Volunteers?

by Neural Outlaw in Neural Interface

As if by magic, another item at the BPS Research Digest which is also relevant to my recent forays discusses the question of whether participants in psychology studies are "representative" of the total sample under review. It seems like the majority of those who take part in psychology studies are generally more "stable and outgoing", which begs questions about whether said studies are reliable in their testing of depression measures, for example.To give some background, the popular five-factor ........ Read more »

Jan-Erik Lönnqvist, Sampo Paunonen, Markku Verkasalo, Sointu Leikas, Annamari Tuulio-Henriksson, & Jouko Lönnqvist. (2007) Personality characteristics of research volunteers. European Journal of Personality, 21(8), 1017-1030. DOI: 10.1002/per.655  

  • August 20, 2008
  • 11:11 PM

How Clinical is Non-Clinical?

by Neural Outlaw in Neural Interface

So far in my budding career I've been involved in three psychology studies, all of which required the recruitment of non-clinical participants. Even before that, my psych undergraduate final-year project on schizophrenia was carried out by surveying non-clinical participants. For the benefit of lay readers, non-clinical participants refers to "normal" people who are recruited to take part in the study and are different to results gleaned from sufferers of psychosis, anxiety or oth........ Read more »

Idia B. Thurston, Jessica Curley, Sherecce Fields, Dimitra Kamboukos, Ariz Rojas, & Vicky Phares. (2008) How nonclinical are community samples?. Journal of Community Psychology, 36(4), 411-420. DOI: 10.1002/jcop.20223  

  • July 24, 2008
  • 12:44 AM

Self-affirmation makes hard-to-swallow advice more palatable

by Mark Lapierre in The Winding Path

Some recent research has given me the chance to combine the sort of topic I used to write about with my more recent focus. It’s research headed by Jennifer Crocker of the University of Michigan, on how writing about your important values affects how you feel about yourself, how you feel about other people, and what influence that has on your acceptance of potentially threatening information. If you’d just like to read about the research itself, Science Daily has a good summary. I’m going t........ Read more »

  • July 15, 2008
  • 12:00 AM

Did You Eat Your Fruits and Vegetables Today?

by Walter Jessen in Highlight HEALTH

Answering seems simple enough. For many people however, the need to avoid criticism and seek praise causes them to respond in a manner consistent with expected norms. Self-reports of dietary intake can be biased by these tendencies, tainting consumption data collected by the health community. Everyone knows they should eat five or more servings of [...]ShareThis... Read more »

  • March 7, 2008
  • 12:00 AM

Religion has no effect on antisocial behaviour

by Tom Rees in Epiphenom

In fact, there is a trend the other way - the less religious a society is, the lower the levels of antisocial behaviour. At least according to a new study out today in Science.... Read more »

B. Herrmann, C. Thoni, & S. Gachter. (2008) Antisocial Punishment Across Societies. Science, 319(5868), 1362-1367. DOI: 10.1126/science.1153808  

  • July 7, 2005
  • 12:08 PM

Is this the lamest study ever or what?

by dave in Word Munger

On Cognitive Daily, we have editorial standards. We won’t post on a study which we don’t think is worthwhile. Fortunately here I have no such restrictions.
Consider this article from Brain and Cognition: “Appearance of Symmetry, Beauty, and Health in Human Faces.” What the researchers did is to show participants pictures of faces and ask them [...]... Read more »

  • November 30, 1999
  • 12:00 AM

The neural correlates of romantic love

by DJ in Neuropoly

Examining a recent study that attempts to answer whether intense, romantic love of the kind commonly associated with young couples exists for long-term married couples as well.... ... Read more »

Acevedo BP, Aron A, Fisher HE, & Brown LL. (2011) Neural correlates of long-term intense romantic love. Social cognitive and affective neuroscience. PMID: 21208991  

DEGRECK, M., ROTTE, M., PAUS, R., MORITZ, D., THIEMANN, R., PROESCH, U., BRUER, U., MOERTH, S., TEMPELMANN, C., & BOGERTS, B. (2008) Is our self based on reward? Self-relatedness recruits neural activity in the reward system. NeuroImage, 39(4), 2066-2075. DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2007.11.006  

  • November 30, 1999
  • 12:00 AM

Initial leanings: When names become destiny

by Juli Breines in Psych Your Mind

Research suggests that people are unconsciously drawn to locations and professions that resemble their names. Other aspects of names, such as uniqueness and ethnicity, also influence life outcomes.... Read more »

Pelham BW, Mirenberg MC, & Jones JT. (2002) Why Susie sells seashells by the seashore: implicit egotism and major life decisions. Journal of personality and social psychology, 82(4), 469-87. PMID: 11999918  

  • November 30, 1999
  • 12:00 AM

The Unfaithful: Who is most likely to cheat?

by Juli Breines in Psych Your Mind

Recent research suggests that certain people might be more prone to infidelity than others. ... Read more »

Fincham FD, Lambert NM, & Beach SR. (2010) Faith and unfaithfulness: can praying for your partner reduce infidelity?. Journal of personality and social psychology, 99(4), 649-59. PMID: 20718545  

Lammers, J., Stoker, J. I., Jordan, J., Pollmann, M. M. H. . (2011) Power increases infidelity among men and women. Psychological Science. info:/

  • November 30, 1999
  • 12:00 AM

Approaching Happiness: The Importance of Social Goals

by Amie in Psych Your Mind

The last time you went on a date or hung out with a new friend, what thoughts were going through your mind as you got ready? Were you thinking things like “I hope I have a great time tonight!” and “I hope we have a really good connection,” or were your thoughts more along the lines of “I hope I don’t make a fool out of myself” and “I hope we aren’t bored with each other”? ... Read more »

  • November 30, 1999
  • 12:00 AM

Be good to yourself

by Juli in Psych Your Mind

Discusses new research on self-compassion.... Read more »

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