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Girls lead boys in academic achievement globally Considerable attention has been paid to how boys’ educational achievements in science and math compare to girls’ accomplishments in those areas, often leading to the assumption that boys outperform girls in these areas. Now, using international data, researchers at the University of Missouri and the University of Glasgow in Glasgow, Scotland, have determined that girls [...]The post Girls lead boys in academic achievement globally appeared first on PsyPost.
Study of former NFL players reveals specifics of concussive brain damage A team of Johns Hopkins specialists, using a battery of imaging and cognitive tests, has gathered evidence of accumulated brain damage that could be linked to specific memory deficits in former National Football League (NFL) players experienced decades after they stopped playing the game. Results of the small study of nine men provide further evidence [...]The post Study of former NFL players reveals specifics of concussive brain damage appeared first on PsyPost.
Engineering self-assembling amyloid fibers Nature has many examples of self-assembly, and bioengineers are interested in copying or manipulating these systems to create useful new materials or devices. Amyloid proteins, for example, can self-assemble into the tangled plaques associated with Alzheimer’s disease — but similar proteins can also form very useful materials, such as spider silk, or biofilms around living [...]The post Engineering self-assembling amyloid fibers appeared first on PsyPost.
Ads effective even in the midst of multitasking, studies find Those video ads playing in the corner of your computer screen, in the midst of your multitasking, may have more impact than you realize. They may be as effective as the ads you’re really watching, such as those during the Super Bowl, says a University of Illinois researcher. It depends on how you perceive and [...]The post Ads effective even in the midst of multitasking, studies find appeared first on PsyPost.
“Losing Everything Was The Best Thing That Ever Happened     It’s hard to imagine that losing everything could be, in any way, good, let alone the best thing ever. But then again, there are many things that were hard to imagine before they happened — take walking on the moon, running a four minute mile, climbing Mt Everest,...
Bipolar Is Not Contagious I can remember as a child not having very many friends. People avoided me right from the beginning of my life. Even my own parents and my brother. They knew something was just a bit off, a bit different and they wanted no part of whatever it was. Had I...
Congratulations Psych Central! Celebrate 20 years with Dr. John Let’s celebrate (and Congratulate) Psych Central’s 20th Anniversary with Founder Dr. John Grohol… Yes, it was twenty years ago, Psych Central began pioneering the cyberspace frontier with forums, message boards and a network designed to share information about mental health issues. Thus, “Cyber Advocacy”...
It’s Ok When Opportunities Don’t Work Out For the last couple of months I’ve been caught up in a whirlwind of activity, I found an agent who was interested in my book and I took on a couple new writing jobs simply for the sake of earning money. It all seemed to be going so well, aside...
What I Wish I Knew Before I Was Diagnosed I can’t remember ever not being diagnosed with something – just that my early years were very...odd....
Autism genes randomly mutated A new genetic study shows even siblings with autism often have very different DNA mutations from one another.
Learning from animal friendships Studying cross-species relationships can give insight into the factors that go into normal relationships.
BPhope 2015 Blogger The offer! I got and Email in early December that BP Hope was updating it site for 2015.  I thought it’s been 4 years in Aprils Maybe I could dray the bloggers… I thought there was only 4 peers, I could come up with and idea for them so I...
The Trauma Therapist’s Toolkit This is my therapeutic “toolkit” for adult complex trauma clients. I have my first cohort of graduate students to thank for the graphic. When they were learning about different therapeutic models used in their internship, they asked how I knew what to use when. At first I was stumped; must...
5 Tips for Becoming a Better Listener I’m a big fan of Elizabeth Bernstein‘s work in the Wall Street Journal, and she wrote an interesting piece, “How Well Are You Listening? We’re naturally bad listeners, even with loved ones; steps to avoid burn-out.” Here are some of the key steps she outlines, for being a better listener:...
Do 'Ugly Duckling' Stories About Beauty Harm Women? In the classic children’s story The Ugly Duckling, a homely looking “duckling” is mocked by his fellow barnyard animals because of his unattractive appearance. However, much to the surprise of himself and others, the duckling grows into the most beautiful bird of all: a swan. The message communicated by this beloved story is simple: Beauty is malleable. Just because someone is born unattractive does not mean they cannot grow up to be beautiful like a swan. But this “beauty is malleable” message does not just exist amoung the pages of a children’s book. Marketing campaigns like Maybelline’s famous, “Maybe she’s born with it, maybe it’s Maybelline,” encourage women to reject the idea of inherent beauty and instead focus on what women can do to improve their beauty. This message that less attractive girls can become beautiful is also commonly seen in movies (She’s All That and Never Been Kissed) and celebrity magazine interviews with the likes of Eva Longoria (Allure, 2006), Beyoncé (Glamour, 2009), and Victoria’s Secret model Rosie Huntington-Whiteley (Harper’s Bazaar UK, 2011). But is the “beauty is malleable” message a healthy one? A new series of studies conducted in my lab suggests it is not and in fact may harm girls and young women. To understand why the “beauty is malleable” message may be harmful, it is important to understand what psychologists already know about malleable traits more generally. For example, consider this question: Do you think that traits like intelligence are something people are generally born with? You are born either smart or dumb, and there isn’t much you can do to change that? Or instead do you think such traits change over one’s lifetime and that just because you are not born smart doesn’t mean through education and effort you can become smart? According to research by Carol Dweck and colleagues, if you adopt the first perspective and believe traits are fixed and change little over the lifespan, you are considered an “entity” individual. But if you adopt the second perspective and believe traits are malleable and can change, then you are an “incremental” individual. Why does any of this matter? Well, it turns out that because of their differing beliefs about trait malleability, entity and incremental people respond very differently. The more someone believes traits are malleable, the more they adopt a “growth mindset,” which means they are more likely to adopt goals to improve this trait, to exert effort toward the trait domain, and to persist in this domain despite failure. For this reason, children who believe intelligence is malleable have better grades and are less likely to abandon their academic studies than children who believe intelligence is fixed. Because if you are an entity student, what is the point of doing your homework or studying if you believe there is little you can do to increase your intelligence? So a wealth of research consistently shows that malleable beliefs are good and fixed beliefs are bad. But what happens when we apply this same logic to the domain of physical beauty? The problem here is that in modern society, beauty is an overly idealized and largely unattainable goal for most women. With enough effort and persistence, nearly anyone can earn good grades in school. But no amount of effort or persistence can turn the typical woman into the photoshopped, unrealistically perfect beauty images they see every day in advertisements, movies, and magazines. Given this, maybe the message that beauty is malleable and can be improved upon leads women to focus too much effort and attention on this unattainable beauty goal. To explore this possibility, my colleagues and I conducted several studies that were recently published in the journal Social Cognition. For instance, in one study we had people read a story that either highlighted (1) how beauty is malleable and changes significantly over the lifespan, (2) how beauty is fixed and doesn’t change much over the lifespan, or (3) a neutral story that had nothing to do with beauty. We found that women who read the “beauty is malleable” story later reported more anxiety about their appearance, were more likely to base their sense of self-worth on their appearance, and were more interested in getting plastic surgery than women who read the other two stories. Thus, the more these women thought they could improve their appearance, the more concerned and obsessed they became, even to the point of considering plastic surgery! Interestingly, men who read these same stories did not show an increase in these appearance concerns, likely because the beauty standards for women are far more idealized and unattainable than they are for men. These results suggest that stories and movies that communicate a message of malleable beauty may in fact set women up for future appearance issues. For women who buy into this message, beauty is an ever-receding mirage. The more they work to achieve the idealized beauty standard, the more it slips from their grasp. So armed with this knowledge, what can we do to combat society’s message that beauty is malleable? It may seem counterintuitive to convince young girls there is not much they can do to improve their beauty, but anecdotal evidence suggests just such a message may be beneficial. In 2013, Victoria’s Secret model Cameron Russell made headlines when she stated her beauty was not based on hard work but on the fact that she had “won a genetic lottery” and that “there is very little that we can do to transform how we look.” Many women reacted to this message by stating it was inspirational and empowering. So the less we emphasize the malleability of beauty, maybe the more likely it is that girls and young women will turn their attention and efforts to more healthy pursuits. Topics:  Gender Body Image Subtitle:  Stories with a "beauty is malleable" message set women up for appearance issues. Blog to Post to:  The Social Thinker Teaser Text:  Many beloved stories and movies communicate the message that "beauty is malleable." But a new set of studies show how this message sets women up for future appearance issues. Teaser Image:  Mature Audiences Only:  Images:  Content Topics:  Intelligence Self-Esteem Consumer Behavior Education Cognition Anxiety Beauty Motivation Personality Quote
Do “Ugly Duckling” Stories about Beauty Harm Women? In the classic children’s story The Ugly Duckling, a homely looking “duckling” is mocked by his fellow barnyard animals because of his unattractive appearance. However, much to the surprise of himself and others, the duckling grows into the most beautiful bird of all: a swan. The message communicated by this beloved story is simple: Beauty is malleable. Just because someone is born unattractive does not mean they cannot grow up to be beautiful like a swan. But this “beauty is malleable” message does not just exist between the pages of a children’s book. Marketing campaigns like Maybelline’s famous, “Maybe she’s born with it, maybe it’s Maybelline,” encourage women to reject the idea of inherent beauty and instead focus on what women can do to improve their beauty. This message that less attractive girls can become beautiful is also commonly seen in movies (She’s All That, Never Been Kissed) and celebrity magazine interviews with the likes of Eva Longoria (Allure, 2006), Beyoncé (Glamour, 2009), and Victoria’s Secret model Rosie Huntington-Whiteley (Harper’s Bazaar UK, 2011). But is the “beauty is malleable” message a healthy one? A new series of studies conducted in my lab suggests it is not and in fact may harm girls and young women. To understand why the “beauty is malleable” message may be harmful, it is important to understand what psychologists already know about malleable traits more generally. For example, consider this question: Do you think that traits like intelligence are something people are generally born with? You are born either smart or dumb and there isn’t much you can do to change that? Or instead do you think such traits change over one’s lifetime and that just because you are not born smart doesn’t mean through education and effort you can become smart? According to research by Carol Dweck and colleagues, if you adopt the first perspective and believe traits are fixed and change little over the lifespan, you are considered an “entity” individual. But if you adopt the second perspective and believe traits are malleable and can change, then you are an “incremental” individual. Why does any of this matter? Well, it turns out that because of their differing beliefs about trait malleability, entity and incremental people respond very differently. The more someone believes traits are malleable, the more they adopt a “growth mindset,” which means they are more likely to adopt goals to improve this trait, to exert effort toward the trait domain, and to persist in this domain despite failure. For this reason, children who believe intelligence is malleable have better grades and are less likely to abandon their academic studies than children who believe intelligence is fixed. Because if you are an entity student, what is the point of doing your homework or studying if you believe there is little you can do to increase your intelligence? So a wealth of research consistently shows that malleable beliefs are good and fixed beliefs are bad. But what happens when we apply this same logic to the domain of physical beauty? The problem here is that in modern society, beauty is an overly idealized and largely unattainable goal for most women. With enough effort and persistence, nearly anyone can earn good grades in school. But no amount of effort or persistence can turn the typical woman into the photoshopped, unrealistically perfect beauty images they see every day in advertisements, movies and magazines. Given this, maybe the message that beauty is malleable and can be improved upon leads women to focus too much effort and attention on this unattainable beauty goal. To explore this possibility, my colleagues and I conducted several studies that were recently published in the journal Social Cognition. For instance, in one study we had people read a story that either highlighted (1) how beauty is malleable and changes significantly over the lifespan, (2), how beauty is fixed and doesn’t change much over the lifespan, or (3) a neutral story that had nothing to do with beauty. We found that women who read the “beauty is malleable” story later reported more anxiety about their appearance, were more likely to base their sense of self-worth on their appearance, and were more interested in getting plastic surgery than women who read the other two stories. Thus, the more these women thought they could improve their appearance, the more concerned and obsessed they became, even to the point of considering plastic surgery! Interestingly, men who read these same stories did not show an increase in these appearance concerns, likely because the beauty standards for women are far more idealized and unattainable than they are for men. These results suggest that stories and movies that communicate a message of malleable beauty may in fact set women up for future appearance issues. For women who buy into this message, beauty is an ever-receding mirage. The more they work to achieve the idealized beauty standard, the more it slips from their grasp. So armed with this knowledge, what can we do to combat society’s message that beauty is malleable? It may seem counterintuitive to convince young girls there is not much they can do to improve their beauty, but anecdotal evidence suggests just such a message may be beneficial. In 2013, Victoria’s Secret model Cameron Russell made headlines when she stated her beauty was not based on hard work but on the fact that she had “won a genetic lottery” and that “there is very little that we can do to transform how we look.” Many women reacted to this message by stating it was inspirational and empowering. So the less we emphasize the malleability of beauty, maybe the more likely it is that girls and young women will turn their attention and efforts to more healthy pursuits. Topics:  Gender Body Image Subtitle:  Stories with a "beauty is malleable" message set women up for appearance issues Blog to Post to:  The Social Thinker Teaser Text:  Many beloved stories and movies communicate the message that "beauty is malleable." But a new set of studies shows how this message sets women up for future appearance issues. Teaser Image:  Mature Audiences Only:  Images:  Content Topics:  Intelligence Self-Esteem Consumer Behavior Education Cognition Anxiety Beauty Motivation Personality Quote
Brain study sheds light on how children with autism process social play Brain scans confirm significant differences in play behavior, brain activation patterns and stress levels in children with autism spectrum disorder as compared with typically developing children, new research demonstrates.
Father forgive me for I have sinned and have I am guilty. I’m not sure what I’m guilty of but I’m certain I am guilty. I was brought up Catholic and went to a Catholic elementary school. The nuns taught us about the different kinds of sins – venial sins, a sort of lesser gateway sin that wouldn’t send us directly to...
Cochlear implant users can hear, feel the beat in music People who use cochlear implants for profound hearing loss do respond to certain aspects of music, contrary to common beliefs and limited scientific research, says a research team. The scientists say exposure to the beat in music, such as drums, can improve the emotional and social quality-of-life of cochlear implant users and may even help improve their understanding and use of spoken language.
Sounds of silence: Brain activity analysis informs researchers on how vocalization works Refined techniques in brain activity analysis in zebra finches yields interesting results about how vocalization works. The research showed that by silencing of neurons in the arcopallium, a region in the brain known to be responsible for song generation, that zebra finch songs would become erratic and incomplete. It also demonstrated how precise this neuronal suppression method can be in determining the function of very small groups of neurons.