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Neurofinance study confirms that financial decisions are made on an emotional basis The willingness of decision makers to take risks increases when they play games of chance with money won earlier.  Risk taking also rises when they have the opportunity to compensate for earlier losses by breaking even.
Seven Simple Email Tips That Improve Communication I've written some horrible emails"”emails that crashed through the atmosphere of other people's lives and left 500-kilometer comet tails of smoke and hatred. But then I got control of my life.read more
The Words of Jean Piaget Jean Piaget was a Swiss psychologist known for his famous theory of cognitive development. His work helped transform the study of child development and contributed greatly to our understanding of how kids grow and change over the course of childhood....Read Full Post
Authoritarian Parenting – Effective or Counterproductive? The parenting debate is most definitely one that comes up fairly regularly. We are forever hearing about this type of parenting, and that type of mothering a child. Authoritarian parenting is a term that has been thrown around a lot recently, and it would seem that it picks up a lot of mixed reviews. To […]
Professional Violinists Can't Tell a Stradivarius From a Modern Violin The violins of 18th Century craftsman Antonio Stradivari are legendary . The most perfect violins ever made . They're so perfect, in fact, that renowned violin soloists not only can't tell the difference between a Stradivarius and a modern violin, they actually tend to prefer the latter. Wait, what? Crap....
Bone marrow stem cells show promise in stroke treatment Stem cells culled from bone marrow may prove beneficial in stroke recovery, scientists have learned. The researchers identified 46 studies that examined the use of mesenchymal stromal cells -- a type of multipotent adult stem cells mostly processed from bone marrow -- in animal models of stroke. They found MSCs to be significantly better than control therapy in 44 of the studies.
Having the Option to Do Nothing Increases Commitment We often assume that giving people the chance to choose what they are going to do will increase their motivation to do it. One reason why many colleges give their students so much autonomy is with the belief that if students have selected the classes they take they will put more effort into those classes than if the classes were assigned to them. read more
Stressful environments genetically affect African American boys Stressful upbringings can leave imprints on the genes of children, including African-American boys, according to a study. Such chronic stress during youth leads to physiological weathering similar to aging. "African American children have really not yet been studied through this context," said a co-author. "Previous work has mostly focused on middle-class whites. Our study takes a different approach and really highlights the importance of early intervention to moderate disparities in social and educational opportunities."
Teaching Robots Not To Stare Advice columns frequently repeat the mantra of making eye contact — how it enables you to exude an aura of self-confidence and sincerity. But, the truth is, too much eye contact freaks people out. And robots are the worst offenders....
Be thankful and make better long-term decisions Stamping out emotional responses seems like the best path to making wiser and more logical decisions.
Proprioceptive feedback helps rehab patients learning to operate robotic prosthetic Proprioception significantly improved prosthetic control in the absence of vision, new research has shown. When patients are fitted with a robotic prosthetic limb, they gain control over their prosthesis with the help of a communication pathway provided by a brain-computer interface, or BCI, implanted in the brain. However, BCI-controlled prosthetics currently operate without somatosensory feedback.
Lied-to Children More Likely to Lie and Cheat Themselves What percentage of children will lie and cheat after being lied to themselves?→ Dr Jeremy Dean is a psychologist and author of PsyBlog. His latest book is "Making Habits, Breaking Habits: How to Make Changes That Stick" Related articles:How to Teach Children to Share Irregular Bedtimes Reduce Children's Cognitive Performance Spanking Children Promotes Antisocial Behaviour and Slows Mental Development Free Play: Simple Items More Fun For Children Same-Sex Parenting Does Not Harm Children, Research Review Finds
Ten things we learnt about behaviour change and sustainability How do we create better habits for ourselves and the planet? Catch up on highlights from our expert and reader debateExplore the experts and full behaviour change debate.""We're not as rational as we would like to think. More information is not the answer" opened GreeNudge and CICERO's Steffen Kallbekken. Unilever's Richard L Wright added "Successful communication requires a very high level of engagement - making it expensive. We need cleverer, more cost-effective ways to engage people." To illustrate this, Sainsbury's Sarah Ellis reminded us: "Customers can spend as little as 6 seconds making a decision at the shelf.""We have to identify behaviours we'd like to see, then arrange rewarding environments - or disincentives for undesirable behaviours...If it's not practical to make permanent changes to the environment, or if the effects wear off as we habituate to their presence in our environment, then we may not see long term impact"For example, the environmental impact of carrier bag charging is in many ways debatable. However, the change pushes reuse and environmental impact to front of mind, raises awareness and reminds at every checkout. This wider impact and the creation of a new social norm have yet to be quantified but achievable change in incremental steps is crucial. (Carl Hughes)"People need at least seven portions, but there was an understanding that this would be unachievable by most. It therefore made sense to encourage five on the basis that this would have a positive, albeit lesser effect."If the motivation is extrinsic (eg: monetary) the change is unlikely to be sustained once the incentive's removed, and also unlikely to be transferred to other domains of behaviour. If the motivation is intrinsic (eg: value-based) the behavioural change is much more likely to be sustained over time (Steffen Kallbekken)Explicit pro-environment and sustainability attitudes have little predictive value in terms of behaviour. This is not specific to sustainability our habits, impulses, and desire for comfort and convenience have trouble competing with even our best intentions and dearly held beliefs. (Michelle Shiota)There is a broad societal desire to become more sustainable, less wasteful and more efficient, however there are barriers to this becoming a reality. First, not everyone shares these desires. Second, those who do may not actually behave in accordance with these desires - the Value-Action gap. (Carl Hughes)When faced with a £30 two hour flight or a £100 six hour train, I will often fly even though I know I shouldn't. And that probably offsets everything else 'good' that I do.In reality it varies, some things stick after you've done them twice, because they just make sense (less water in your kettle), others take more persistence (smoking). At The DoNation, all pledges are set to two months, if users succeed, 81% of them continue for the long term (Hermione Taylor) ...leveraging the natural human motives to play, compete, test ourselves, earn rewards, and take care of our loved ones Continue reading...
Teaching Psychology to Leaders Is intelligence a disadvantage in low-skilled jobs?read more
Regular aerobic exercise boosts memory area of brain in older women Regular aerobic exercise seems to boost the size of the area of the brain involved in verbal memory and learning among women whose intellectual capacity has been affected by age, indicates a small study. The researchers tested the impact of different types of exercise on the hippocampal volume of 86 women who said they had mild memory problems, known as mild cognitive impairment -- and a common risk factor for dementia.
Processing new information during sleep compromises memory New research highlights the important role sleep plays in strengthening and maintaining the accuracy of a memory and hints at why the brain shuts out sensory information during periods of deep sleep. The study found that introducing new odor information to an animal while it sleeps compromises its ability to remember the difference between new and previously encountered smells while awake.
Online registry to drive brain disease research A new online project promises to dramatically cut the time and cost of conducting clinical trials for brain diseases, while also helping scientists analyze and track the brain functions of thousands of volunteers over time.
Brain changes can result from participation in one year of contact sports, evidence shows The results of a study to determine the cumulative effects of head impacts as they relate to changes in the brain absent of concussion have been presented. The study concluded that a single season of football play can produce MRI measurable brain changes that have been previously association with mTBI -- adding to the increasing amounts of literature demonstrating that a season of participation in a contact sport can show changes in the brain in the absence of concussion or clinical findings.
Alcohol May Have Different Pair-Bonding Effects On Males And Females Alcohol is often referred to as a social lubricant, but its effects on pair bonding have not been fully explored. But a new experiment performed on prairie voles — a socially monogamous mammal — suggests that alcohol may cause males to be more drawn to strangers, while the opposite holds true for females.Read more...
How One Man Beat The Mackworth Clock The Mackworth Clock is a famous test that was used to assess the vigilance of radar operators during World War II. Can you notice when a clock jumps one second ahead? but one man "hacked" the test, getting an unheard-of score. Years later, he explained his hack — and brought up a major flaw in most psychological studies. Read more...