Cognition Essential Reads

Can You Break the Mood-Memory Cycle?

By Ira Hyman Ph.D. on March 27, 2015 in Mental Mishaps
Does it ever seem that the only thoughts that come to mind are negative? You only remember the painful and sorrowful experiences from your life. Someone reminds you of something happy, but you struggle to remember it. And remembering that happy experience may make you feel worse rather than better.

How a Suggestion Can Change Your Life

By Polly Campbell on March 20, 2015 in Imperfect Spirituality
We are influenced by all kinds of things. But knowing that, we can use those external influences to shape success.

10 Things Your Psychology Professors Want You to Know

An education in psychology is enormous - including information on such diverse topics ranging from how infants perceive shapes to how rats learn to complete mazes - and more. Way more. The list found here distills a traditional education in psychology to 10 things that psychology professors really want their students to walk away with.

Do Dog People and Cat People Differ in Terms of Dominance?

New data suggest that dog people and cat people are selecting their preferred pet because it complements their own personality.

Why Childhood Stress Crimps Academic Performance

By Nigel Barber Ph.D. on March 18, 2015 in The Human Beast
Animals from an environment full of risk remain vigilant and avoid exploring their surroundings. This promotes survival but has the indirect consequence of reducing their cognitive ability. A similar pattern applies to humans and shows up as academic under performance.

Science and the Online Dating Profile

Online dating is the new singles bar, one in which your words won't be drowned out by the music. But which words should you use? There is some scientific evidence about relatively more effective ways to turn an online contact into a real huggable moment.

Comforting Third Spaces

The best third spaces are green spaces.

Do Sex Surveys Pose Any Risk of Harm to Participants?

Surveying college students about their sex lives is often presumed to pose risks to participants, such as psychological distress. However, research finds that sex surveys appear to hold no more potential for harm than general psychological tests.

Do We Age in Stages?

By Steven Mintz Ph.D. on March 12, 2015 in The Prime of Life
Today's adults have greater freedom than ever to decide how best to live.

Why Some People Are More Resilient Than Others

By Denise Cummins Ph.D. on March 11, 2015 in Good Thinking
Everyone suffers at least one negative life event. A recent study discovered two factors that characterize resilient people following negative or even traumatic life events.

Iconoclastic Puritans

Why images of the gods are often targets of religious zealots and why religious zealots will never run out of images to target.

Creativity and Mental Illness

Creating and creativity are healthy processes in contradiction to contentions such as those of Kay Jamison and Nancy Andreasen and others who have carried out weak research purportedly showing connections between creativity and mental illness.

Hands Up, Don’t Shoot

Psychologists may play an instrumental role in reducing inappropriate use of deadly force by law enforcement personnel.

The Surprising Upside of Guilt and Shame

By Guy Winch Ph.D. on March 07, 2015 in The Squeaky Wheel
Guilt and shame are extremely unpleasant emotions that can cause deep psychological wounds and impact our lives in significant ways--but might they also have an upside?

7 Habits of Highly Effective Sleuths

By Katherine Ramsland Ph.D. on March 07, 2015 in Shadow Boxing
People who ponder puzzles, whether writers, investigators, photographers, or physicians, will benefit from turning these skills into habits.

When Compassion is the Best Medicine

What a brain disease strikes, friends and family need support for the patient and themselves.

The Surprising Way That Simple Actions Can Change Your Mind

By Geoff Haddock Ph.D. on March 05, 2015 in Attitude Check
Can holding a pen in your mouth lead you to see cartoons as more or less funny?

Forgetting Apple’s Logo: Why We Forget What We Often See

Where was the last fire extinguisher you saw? Do you remember where the “B” key is on your keyboard? Even things we see and interact with constantly can be forgotten—sometimes because we see them so much.

Our Top-Down Brains and How They Help Us Adapt to the World

What you see is often not a matter of the stimuli that are in front of you, but a matter of your expectations. The “affair of the dress,” and whether you see it as white-gold or blue-black is just another example of our top-down brains.

Why We Hate It When People Invade Our Space

By Joe Navarro M.A. on February 27, 2015 in Spycatcher
Why exercising social intelligence matters and why it can dominate a news cycle

Why You Were Born to Gossip

By David Ludden Ph.D. on February 27, 2015 in Talking Apes
Since our brains are finely tuned for coordinating our relationships with others, it’s not surprising that language is structured to convey social information.

Think You Can't Get Drunk on Soda Water? Think Again.

Don't blame it on the alcohol! Blame it on your expectations about drinking.

Is Sadomasochism a Uniquely Human Form of Sexuality?

By Hal Herzog Ph.D. on February 25, 2015 in Animals and Us
From an evolutionary point of view, the enjoyment of pain would seem to be maladaptive. Is there an animal analog of finding sexual satisfaction in being whipped, poked with needles, or having hot wax dripped on your skin?

Online Dating: The Dark Side

By Martin Graff Ph.D. on February 25, 2015 in Love, Digitally
These people use devious psychological ploys. Have you ever been suspicious about an online relationship?

What Do Scientists Know About Finding a Purpose in Life?

By Todd B Kashdan Ph.D. on February 24, 2015 in Curious?
Providing information on the science of a purpose in life. heavy, beautiful, and of paramount importance

A+ Students/C- Learners: Education’s Report Card

By APA Division 15 on February 24, 2015 in PsychEd
Today’s educational system is contributing to an undesirable and unanticipated problem—the production of many achievement-oriented, high-performing students who are, at best, mediocre learners. This is a bold and controversial claim that demands substantiation. beginning with what distinguishes good students from good learners.

How New Payment Technology Can Manipulate You

By Nir Eyal on February 23, 2015 in Automatic You
Digital payment systems use subtle tactics to increase tips, and while it’s certainly good for hard-working service workers, it may not be so good for your wallet. Here's the hidden psychology of why you unconsciously pay more.

8 Negative Attitudes of Chronically Unhappy People

All of us experience negative thoughts from time to time. How we manage our negative attitudes can make the difference between confidence versus fear, hope versus despair, mastery versus victimhood, and victory versus defeat. Here are eight negative attitudes of chronically unhappy people...

Mindfulness for Chronic Pain

By Michael Hogan Ph.D on February 20, 2015 in In One Lifespan
There is a strong emerging body of evidence for the effectiveness of mindfulness- and acceptance-based approaches for a range of difficulties, including chronic pain. We tried to take mindfulness for chonic pain online. We called our programme Mindfulness in Action (MIA). The results of our MIA trial were interesting.

Flapping Tongues and Brawny Brains

By David Ludden Ph.D. on February 20, 2015 in Talking Apes
Lifelong bilingualism is one source of cognitive reserve, but there are plenty of options for monolinguals, too.