Essential Reads

Intelligence, Education, Personality, and Social Mobility

By Michael Hogan Ph.D. on April 21, 2017 in In One Lifespan
What predicts upward social mobility? We identified four important factors—education, intelligence, higher openness and lower neuroticism.

The Science of Religion for Everyone

Why insist that religion is immune from scientific study when cognitive and evolutionary theories have already made great strides in explaining a wide array of religious phenomena?

A Fool and His or Her Money, Psychologically Speaking

Three cognitive biases that can lead to unwise financial decisions.

Coincidence in Politics: All the President’s Men

A series of similar, low-probability events involving the Trump presidential campaign demonstrate how coincidences can be analyzed objectively.

More Posts on Cognition

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5 Distorted Thought Patterns and How to Change Them

By John Kim, LMFT on April 22, 2017 in The Angry Therapist
We all have cognitive distortions.

10 Reasons Why Silence Really Is Golden

Could the answer to improved health be as simple as silence?

How to Calm Your Restless Nights

We know sleeplessness is "all in our head," but here's how you can put your head to bed.
J. Krueger

Divide and Conquer

By Joachim I Krueger Ph.D. on April 19, 2017 in One Among Many
Acts of mental division or subtraction are critical for our understanding of thinking. How much new light do they shed?

Train Too Much and a Dog Won't Remember

Back to back training sessions involving different tasks impairs a dog's long-term memory of what he has learned
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Little Gestures

Language and its roots in gestures.
used with permission from iclipart.com

Which Is "Crazier?"

How does a forensic psychologist tease out the mind of a criminal defendant at the time he committed it? Debunking one myth - and investigating one source - at a time.

The Courage of Bob

By Greg O'Brien on April 17, 2017 in On Pluto
At 78, there are a lot of miles on Bob Bertschy, who, as a lanky young ballplayer, crouched behind home plate, wearing the “tools of ignorance,” as a catcher with the LA Dodgers.

8 Easy Strategies to Combat Insomnia

There are simple things you can do, both behaviorally, and in your head, that can lead to satisfying and restful sleep.
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What Makes the Human Brain “Human?” Part 1

A quick introduction to some possible anatomical underpinnings of higher consciousness in humans and other animals.

Mirror Touch

By Maureen Seaberg on April 16, 2017 in Sensorium
Harvard-trained physician Joel Salinas, M.D. and his extraordinary synesthetic, empathic powers
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Are We Dreaming All the Time?

Is dreaming truly different from wakefulness?

Can You Have Too Much Empathy?

By Marcia Reynolds Psy.D. on April 15, 2017 in Wander Woman
There is a light and dark side to empathy. Knowing how to let go of the need to fix and care for someone will increase the impact of your empathy.

How Universal Is Body Language?

By Romeo Vitelli Ph.D. on April 12, 2017 in Media Spotlight
Are emotional signals shaped by different cultures or are they universal to all humans? An ambitious new research project seeks to answer that question,

The "Guilty Dog" Look and Other Borrowed Signals

The guilty dog look and the human handshake have similar roots in the evolution of animal communication.

The Nature of a Dog's Eye Can Make Problem-Solving Difficult

Dogs have limited visual abilities when compared to humans, and this may make solving certain problems difficult.

Misunderstanding in the Multilingual Workplace

Today’s workplace increasingly brings together people from diverse language backgrounds. Is this multilingualism a threat in need of a solution or a par for the course?

Positive Heuristics

Researchers are looking at heuristics the wrong way — as sources of bias and error. In fact, they are powerful strategies for making inferences under uncertainty and ambiguity.

Thinking Beyond the Third Dimension

By Gayil Nalls Ph.D. on April 07, 2017 in Sensoria
What mathematicians know to be true is astounding, and none of it informs any of the discussions we're having.

MIT Scientists Identify Brain Circuits of Memory Formation

MIT neuroscientists have discovered previously unknown brain circuitry necessary for memory formation. These revolutionary findings defy traditional memory consolidation models.

A New Big Five for Psychotherapists, Part II

We can transcend the paradigms in psychotherapy by thinking in terms of systems of character adaptation.

Hope

Hope remains, psychologically, a paradoxical mental phenomenon.

Toward a Quantum Model of Humor

By Liane Gabora Ph.D. on April 06, 2017 in Mindbloggling
The bisociation of incongruous frames or word meanings in jokes is modelled as a linear superposition of basis states, or possible interpretations, in a complex Hilbert space.

Is Clicker Training the Most Effective Way to Train Dogs?

New data resolves the controversy as to whether clicker training is better than using a word of praise when training dogs.
Christy Thompson/Shutterstock

Speaking Your Partner's Love Language May Not Matter

By Tim Cole Ph.D. on April 05, 2017 in Intimate Portrait
Does it help to speak your partner's love language? New research shows it may not matter.

Understanding the Power of Conspiracy Theories

‘Post-truth’ society provides the perfect conditions for dubious theories to flourish. But are some people more susceptible to conspiracy theories?

You Use "You" to Make Meaning Out of Misery

A recent study shows that a perennial pet peeve of English teachers actually serves a useful psychological function.

Common Downfalls: Thinking and Feeling Too Much

Powerful emotions can throw people off balance, leaving them to be overwhelmed or to overly control their emotions. Neither style works well—balancing them offers a better way.

5 New Studies Report Previously Unknown Cerebellum Functions

For centuries, most neuroscientists thought the cerebellum didn't play a role in human cognition. This outdated viewpoint is rapidly changing due to advances in modern technology.

Prove It: Overcome Negative Thinking with Targeted Action

By Joel Minden, PhD on April 03, 2017 in CBT and Me
If it's difficult to restructure unrealistic thoughts, support new beliefs with evidence: change your behavior first.