Psychology

Sociology scholars say the stereotype that Native Americans are genetically or psychologically predisposed to alcoholism are all smoke and no firewater. 

Instead, Native Americans were more likely to abstain from alcohol use than Caucasian Americans and there was no difference in Native Americans' binge and heavy drinking rates, according to surveys.


A new analysis indicates that states’ Web-based and phone-based tobacco cessation programs can help people quit smoking, but certain personal characteristics may lead individuals to prefer one type of program over the other. 

Quitline (telephone-based counseling) programs are effective tools for people who are trying to give up smoking, and the evidence for Web-based cessation services is building. Research has found that only one percent to two percent of adult tobacco users in the United States access state quitlines each year, however. Also, sustained use of Web-based interventions is low, with most users visiting some cessation websites fewer than three times.

The term "schizophrenia," with its connotation of hopeless chronic brain disease, should be dropped and replaced with something like "psychosis spectrum syndrome," argues Professor Jim van Os at Maastricht University Medical Centre in The BMJ.


Why do people on the left think American media is right wing? Because journalists are paid by corporations funded by other corporations? Why do people on the left think journalism is right wing? Because journalists go into the field to make a difference rather than to talk about news or events or science, and when people want to be important, they become activists.

And controlling media works.

While many groups find media bias to be a negative, social psychologists say it can be a benefit; by getting them to produce positive content or conciliatory messages about ethnic groups and genders. 

Improving Perceptions


When employees leave a company, there is always an undercurrent of doubt that they might have stayed if they had a good manager. But plenty of well-liked managers lose employees too. 

People leave for more money and/or a promotion most of the time, and less commonly due to a bad boss. 

According to Ravi S. Gajendran, a professor of business administration at University of Illinois, an organization's former employees -- or "alumni" -- can potentially be important strategic assets in the future, provided they leave on good terms.


Take a look at any food label and there's a good chance all design elements, from the color palette to the smallest detail, were meticulously chosen.


Marion Nestle, Vani Hari, Michael Pollan; we have all seen messages from self-appointed "food police" telling us that sugary snacks are bad, GMOs are bad, everything except organic vegetables (they seem to believe those have no pesticides or genetic modification) is bad.

But they may be doing more harm than good, not just for public acceptance of science, but for the people they claim to want to help. The government is doing the same thing. They are increasing their use of public service announcements (PSAs) about the dangers of unhealthy eating. 


The Centers for Disease Control recently released survey results from kids showing that many of them had seen some form of advertisement for e-cigarettes. Then they matched them to the uptick in e-cigarette use among young people and implied causation.


Have you ever been to the supermarket and chosen foods based on nutrition labels?  Have you ever assumed a fat-laden, high-calorie coffee drink must be healthier because a barista claims the milk does not contain something science-sounding like rBST?

Labels were once used to inform. The government mandated accuracy beginning in 1938 to make sure people were getting what they thought they were buying. A decade ago a food maker was penalized for selling cheese that was fake cheese but today a vegan company wants to sell mayonnaise that isn't mayonnaise, and various food activists want mandatory labels on products they compete against.


There is a common perception that as people spend more time together, they begin to act and think more alike. They may even look more alike.  This synchrony, or interdependence, between a couple posits that a married person's cognitive functioning or health influences not only their own well-being but also the well-being of their partner.

A new paper finds that this interdependence continues even when one of the partners passes away and his or her characteristics continue to be linked with the surviving spouse's well-being.