Recently in Writing 6; Section 12 Category

The aspect of psychology that affected me most was the idea of false memories. The thought that someone would be convinced they did something that never happened is amazing to me. False memories are figments of our imagination that are as vivid and tangible as real memories except the events we see never actually happened. These memories are important to study and understand because they have serious effects on peoples lives and perceptions of the world.

In 1990 George Franklin was accused of murdering a girl in 1969 by his daughter Eileen. she claimed that she had repressed the memory of her father killing the girl for 20 years. Although many people thought that the memories were false it was impossible to tell at the time. Eileen's therapist was convinced they were real and even testified in court that they were indeed valid. Although many remained unconvinced that a memory so traumatic could be suppressed so long and still be as vivid as Eileen described it, George Franklin was convicted of murder. This was a mile stone case, and was the first conviction in history based solely off of memory and no tangible evidence. Since the murder was of an eight year old girl it could be possible that the court and jury simply wanted a scapegoat so that the family and community could finally rest easy. The world will never know.

It is important for researchers in the field of memory focus more on the idea of false memories and come up with better models to detect valid and false memories. This must be done so no innocent person is placed in jail.

A link to an article about the George Franklin case
A link to an APA article about how psychologists' view of false memories is evolving

Five Years Later

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If there is one thing I will remember from psychology it is the idea of scientific thinking. I will remember this both because it was repeated so often through out the book and because it is a way of thinking. In every chapter the author would show different claims made by people and why they were not able to make such a claim without more proof. Also there is the pseudoscience which is neither able to be proven nor disproven and how you should be cautious when participating in said pseudoscience. The other reason is it is an idea. It is much easier to remember an idea from a course because an idea is a very broad toic and easier to remember than say a specific time and or date of an experiment. I also, find that scientific thinking is more useful than any one experiment or breakthrough in psychology. It is also easily transferred to other fields of science such as chemistry and psychics. Every time I see a commercial that looks too good to be true I will use my scientific thinking skills and determine whether or not it is for real or a scam.
Patrick Dougan


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I think the concept of social influences as a whole is very interesting. It seems strange when I really think about it: we all have an enormous impact on each other's behavior. One of the least exciting (but in my opinion, one of the most interesting) is conformity. The Asch study, which included the lines of different lengths with confederates intentionally giving incorrect answers was huge in the exploration of conformity.
I've seen myself do things like this plenty of times. In a classroom setting, if enough people give a certain answer out loud to an instructor's question, I have and often do change my opinion. Even if what I think is the correct answer is firmly set in my mind, I'll change my opinion with ease, albeit uncertain ease. Additionally about one in three times I do that, I end up being wrong. If I would have kept my original answer, I would have been one of the few correct students. But with so many people saying something else, it's difficult not to go with the group in those types of situations.
But, I have noticed that the size of the group changes my feelings. As the size of the group increases, I feel more inclined to go with the crowd. In a group of three or so, I will more often stick with what I originally believe is correct. I might be tempted to change my mind in smaller groups, but I usually don't. Regardless, a group of people with a singular belief when I am unsure about something can be convincing. (In a classroom setting at least.) On a social scale when morals come into play, it becomes an entirely different story, which I think is to be expected. I think that peer pressure is slightly less persuasive, while it still is without a doubt effective. I think I'd like to see a study comparing a study similar to the Asch study versus a study on general peer pressure to see how conformity changes with different types of pressure.

David Iverson
Section 12

Of the many endearing and memorable topics we have delved into there are many that will probably stick to some degree throughout my years. However the topic of parts of the brain is one that I found the most interest in which is parts of the brain, more specifically the parietal lobe which specializes in the area of touch and perception. The reason for this is because of a personal experience my junior year of high school. In high school I was diagnosed with a benign brain tumor in my parietal lobe. This topic in Psychology 1001 came as most interesting to me because after learning how the different parts of the brain function in different ways, it was intriguing to find what that specific part of the brain did for me and the people around me. Also with this knowledge I was able to put together side effects I had after surgery with the function of the parietal lobe itself. Overall I received a better understanding of the entire situation, as well as a genuine interest for the human brain. While more than likely I won't continue my education to deal with the area of cognitive psychology it was fulfilling to get some answers to a time in my life that I will never forget.


Social Attraction Predictors (Proximity, Similarity, and Reciprocity)

The reason I chose this concept is because in the next five years of my life I will still be dating women or be in a relationship with one. It is an important concept because without fulfilling these three predictors one will not be able to fulfill the highest levels of compassionate or passionate love. Physical appearance does play a role in social attraction predictors but the most important are proximity (how close two people are), similarity (how much two people have in common) and reciprocity (the likelihood of others reciprocating your actions). In relationships, romantic or not these three factors are key. Studies have shown that the mere exposure effect plays a pivotal role in proximity. The more a person sees of another person, the more they will come to like them. This leads to proximity. Proximity will in turn facilitate in finding similarities between two people. Once similarities have been established the relationship will be open to one person doing something for another and that action will hopefully be reciprocated. All of these factors tie into each other and that is also why I find this concept to be interesting. The ultimate goal in life is for one to achieve self-actualization according to Abraham Maslow, and it would only be that much better if one could achieve that with a partner in compassionate or passionate love. This is important to me because I can apply these three predictors in real life situations while I am dating or involved with somebody. I am positive that in five years I will be applying these predictors in relationships I have romantically or with customers on a daily basis.

Without a doubt, the most important concept in psychology which I believe will stick with me for years is the idea of multiple intelligences. I have always felt that people do exhibit strengths in certain areas over others, and although the book claims that this belief cannot be falsified, I believe that there is more than a hint of truth to what it says. From my experiences growing up, I have seen many kids who possess great skill in one area but lack talent or intelligence in another. For example, I have some friends who are musically brilliant, yet they a logico-mathematical gift. It seems to me that another reason why this intelligence theory is important is because of its ability to encourage those who may be weak in one area to pursue a different one. The Discovery Channel website that I linked to this blog discusses the importance of preaching multiple intelligences to developing minds. A child who is told that they are not talented in one subject may become discouraged and lose confidence when it comes to others. However, if a student is told that they are intelligent in another way, they will be motivated to embrace that skill. It is for all of these reasons that I find the theory of multiple intelligences to be of great interest to me, and why I know it will stick with me for years to come.

Do You Like Me?

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As college students, as young adults, as relationship-seeking animals, we look for love. Sometimes we fail at love, sometimes we succeed. But all in common is that we are constantly looking for intimate relationships. Sometimes, when we fail at love, we look for someone who are experienced so we can get advice from them.

However, there are actually psychological techniques we can use to achieve love with our own hands. The rule is simple: The near the better, the more the better, the similar-er the better.

The law of proximity, mere exposure, and similarity may be the key medicine to your ill-love. The law of proximity states that the closer you live to someone, the more likely you are to have a relationship with him or her. The mere exposure effect suggests that simply the more exposure will lead to a more positive emotion. And lastly, the law of similarity explains why couples tend to look alike, have similar hobbies and personalities.

Now that you know this, next time you go for someone, move close to them, see them as often as possible, and try to know what they are like, so you can be similar to them. Maybe it will work this time, but maybe it won't. If it doesn't work, you have your last option: simply telling someone that you like him or her may cause them to view you differently. So at the end of the day, the most premature and simple way may be the best way. So, next time, let's just be straightforward and honest without any disguise or lies and say, "Hey, I like you."

When it comes to psychology, it is so hard to pinpoint one concept that I found most interesting because there are so many! This is the first psychology course I have ever taken and it has brought me to a whole new level of understanding about the human body and the ways of life. Many of these topics have made me look at life through a new lens. If I had to choose one that influenced me the most, it would be stress/stress management! This really caught my attention, and I will never forget what I learned. The research done by psychologists that has proven that stress and Coronary Heart Disease are, in some cases, very strongly related really caught my attention. At the age of 18, I had a heart attack in October of 2010. My cardiologist suspected that it was stress related due to the fact that my heart had no damage and there was no blockage in my arteries. The concept of stress will always be important to me now. I have realized the impact it can have on ones life. Stress management is something I will never forget after what has happened to me and what I have learned in this class. Many things play into it as talked about in the book, such as sleep, diet, activity, and setting a time-management schedule. It's a big influence on everyone's life, especially us college students. After learning about CHD and how it is caused by stress, I am rather paranoid about how I handle my stress and other variables such as diet and working out. After having a heart attack, I'm going to do everything I possibly can to keep my health at its maximum using the things I have learned in this course.

Stress/stress management is just one of the many concepts that I will remember from this course!


Pavlov's Dog

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One thing I will not forget about Psychology 1001 is Ivan Pavlov's experiment. His salivating dog provided possible insight to the world of addictions. The pairing of a stimulus and a response, shows how some habits are formed.

When I listen to a playlist multiple times, at the end of each song, I can already hear the next because I formed relationships between the two. This phenomenon can be explained with classic conditioning.

The reason this is fascinating, is because classic conditioning is applied to the real world. For example, commercials and advertisements are based on having the costumer have some sort of conditioned response that will make the product sell.

Knowing these psychological tricks, and being more aware, can possibly prevent me from being manipulated and from falling into the hands of such devices.

Video Summary: This video explains Pavlov's experiment with making the dog salivate when it hears the sound of a bell.

Anna Shrifteylik
Section 12

Understanding the young

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As a babysitter, having a good relationship with the kids you are watching is a great thing to have. In order to get along and hang out with the children a knowledge of the development of the child is key. The children I have babysat for range from infants to nine years old, a wide variety of developmental stages there. Knowing when a child can pinpoint and understand punishment and reward is almost pertinent to a successful dynamic between you two. Thankfully I have taken some psychology classes that have helped to outline the stages and ages of specific learning and development. I know that an infant's brain is not developed enough to understand punishment or anger, so I must use other ways, more gentler, to get the point across. A nine year old has had enough development to know that after you eat a meal or playing with toys, cleaning them up is part of the whole sequence. And at this point if they refuse to, they are also able to understand the punishment that can ensue. I've also become accustomed to being able to relate to the children. I know that most of the children I babysit are probably egocentric and aren't the most respectful to others due to naivety. With some background knowledge of child development it is easier for me to understand what is going through the children's heads and if I need to help them solve a problem or if they are able to do it on their own.

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