Psychology

A penalty kick places a goalkeeper at such a disadvantage that only approximately 18% of penalty kicks are saved. However, some soccer fans think goalkeepers might save penalty kicks more easily by standing marginally to the left or right.

It turns out they're right! In an article published in the March issue of Psychological Science, Professors Rich Masters, John van der Kamp and Robin Jackson of the Institute of Human Performance at the University of Hong Kong found that penalty takers are more likely to direct the football to the side with more space.

Researchers at Harvard, Gray et al, are conducting an ongoing mind survey, and have also reported some findings from that online survey, based on a sample of more than 2,000 people. The survey attempts to make one think about different forms of entities that may have a mind and to assign different degrees of consciousness/ mind to them.

 

A brush with a narcissist's inflated ego often leaves one reeling with resentment. Whether it is their constant need for attention or their unfounded sense of entitlement, we are often quick to attribute their shallow behavior to an unconscious self-loathing. However, new research from Keith Campbell at the University of Georgia, Jennifer Bosson at the University of South Florida and colleagues suggests that narcissists actually view themselves the same on the outside as on the inside.

Previous studies have shown that narcissists' conscious self-views are not uniformly positive.

Schizophrenia, as we all know, is one of the most dibilating psychological disorder. It was primarily conceived of as a behavioral disorder, characterized by socially inappropriate and bizarre behavior, but much attention has been focussed nowadays on the cognitive component and the cognitive pathology underlying schizophrenia and it is not unusual for it to be characterized as a thought disorder nowadays .

New research published in the March issue of Psychological Science suggests that efforts to advocate improved statistical practices in psychological research may be paying off.

Geoff Cumming, Fiona Fidler and colleagues at La Trobe University in Melbourne, Australia sought to examine whether guidelines set forth in 1999 by the American Psychological Association’s Task Force on Statistical Inference (TSFI) had been implemented in psychological research.

The authors analyzed articles from 10 leading international psychology journals from 1998 to 2006, focusing on three practices central to the statistical reform debate: Null hypothesis significance testing, confidence intervals and figures with error bars.

PsyBlog has recently posted an article on Cognitive Therapy (CBT) and how it is useful in Depression treatment. this therapy has been shown to be equally effective in Depression as is medication, though this woks in a top-down fashion in the brain (revealed by brain scans), while anti-depressants work in a bottom-up fashion. PsyBlog quotes the following irrational beliefs , as outlined by Beck, that are prominent in Depression.
* Over-generalization. Drawing general conclusions from a single (usually negative) event. E.g. thinking that failing to be promoted at work means a promotion will never come.
* Minimalization and Maximization.

I shed an invisible tear whenever I hear “correlation does not imply causation” which the otherwise excellent swivel (a website about correlations) emphasizes. Of course, there’s truth to it. It saddens me because:

1. It’s dismissive. It is often used to dismiss data from which something can be learned. The life-saving notion that smoking causes lung cancer was almost entirely built on correlations. For too long, these correlations were dismissed.

2. It’s misleading. In real life, nothing unfailingly implies causation. In my experience, every data set has more than one interpretation. To “imply” causation requires diverse approaches and correlations are often among them

Does orange juice taste sweeter if it's a brighter orange? A new study in the March issue of the Journal of Consumer Research finds that the color of a drink can influence how we think it tastes. In fact, the researchers found that color was more of an influence on how taste was perceived than quality or price information.

"Perceptual discrimination is fundamental to rational choice in many product categories yet rarely examined in consumer research," write JoAndrea Hoegg (University of British Columbia) and Joseph W. Alba (University of Florida).

An experiment in which people eat soup from a bottomless bowl? Classic! Or mythological: American Sisyphus. It really happened. It was done by Brian Wansink, a professor of marketing and nutritional science in the Department of Applied Economics and Management at Cornell University, and author of the superb new book Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think (which the CBC has called “the Freakonomics of food”). The goal of the bottomless-soup-bowl experiment was to learn about what causes people to stop eating. One group got a normal bowl of tomato soup; the other group got a bowl endlessly and invisibly refilled.

Can you judge a man's faithfulness by his face? How about whether he would be a good father, or a good provider?