Recently in Writing #4 Category


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Recent research shows that the color red makes men more attractive to women. A study was conducted in England, China, Germany, and the United States that showed, even though red symbolizes many things across the four cultures, in every country it made men more alluring to women. The study showed both men and women a black-and-white picture of a Caucasian man surrounded by a red or white matte and asked them three questions regarding how attractive he is. On a nine point scale, women found the man over one point more attractive when surrounded by red; there was no statistical difference between red and white matte for men. Another experiment showed a man in either a green shirt or a red shirt, women found the man more attractive and desirable when he was wearing a red shirt. Also, a follow up study found that women believed men in red shirts to be significantly more likely to be high in status than men in blue shirts. Five similar studies comparing men in red or grey shirts found the same result, red makes men seem more attractive and of higher status. It has been proposed that red might make men more self-confident, therefore more attractive to women. However, other studies have found that women are better at perceiving red stimuli than men. Though this research does not completely rule out the rival hypothesis of red increasing men's self-confidence, its high rate or replicability shows that there is at least some connection between status/attraction and the color red.

Post Hoc Fallacy

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The post hoc fallacy basically states that correlation does not mean causation. Just because A happend before B does not mean that A caused B. In the book they bring this up with child development in mind, more specifically, if someone does something or exhibits certain behaviors as a child that those behaviors go on to cause certain things like career choices or becoming criminals.

In my life I try to never single out specific reasons for everything that happens i usually just take everything as it is and move on. Trying to come up with explanations for the outcome of some things may be important but for the majority I like to think whats done is done and whatever caused it is moot. Like me posting yet another late blog post. I could still believe, as I did in an earlier blog post, that its just in my nature to be late. Or i could believe its because I skipped yet another monday and treated sunday as another saturday and just didnt get to it but no matter what the reason is, the blog post is late and it needs to be done now regardless of what the caused its tardiness.

The post hoc fallacy can be very important in about every aspect of life because everything that happens has something that caused it and equal possibility of other things that seem like they caused it and understanding the post hoc fallacy can allow us to refrain from making incorrect assumptions about many things.

Childhood Aggression Causation

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In our discussion section we discussed what toll the effects of violent television and video games have on children. There seemed to still be some debate between the class because this topic is very difficult to falsify one view, leaving it wide-open for discussion. However, one view seems very clear to me, violence in video games and television DOES cause children to be more aggressive. If you were to think about what those kids would be doing as opposed to being exposed to violent behavior, they might not have ever had thoughts of how cool it was to get in a fight, or how they wanted to be just like their favorite Power Ranger (yellow was best). With the children being exposed to violence they are spending more time thinking about it more than if they had not seen the violence. It seems identical to the relationship between human attraction. The more time you're around a significant other, the more your feelings grow towards them. In my personal experience I remember being a "mama's boy" when I was younger. I would follow the rules (hard to believe, I know), and never cross the line, but then I developed an interest in Power Rangers and Pokemon. I still remember playing Pokemon with my cousins, and not only would we battle with the "trading cards", but we would be one of our favorite characters and start battling each other (wrestling). However, this is viewed as a bad thing in the eyes of most over-protective guardians, but is it really?
If all children were raised never experiencing sorts of violence and had never resorted to it, wouldn't our country soon be full of a bunch of "sallies" (for lack of a better term)? Last time I checked, I don't want a drill sergeant to be pampering his platoon by saying, "Oh it's okay, you'll get em' next time." What we need is aggressive men who are willing to take on danger, like the men in Jarhead. I don't think those guys we raised off of barney videos sucking their thumbs. While obviously this is not a direct correlation, it still is a dramatization with some truth to it. Overall what I'm trying to say is that while exposure to aggression in children can be negatively influential (for instance witnessing violence in their family regularly), moderate exposure to violence can help to shape character as long as the violence is explained to the child by a respectable adult so the child realizes violence is not for everyday use.


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If I define emotion in one word, I'd choose "Feeling". Our feeling and thoughts are expressed and reflected to ourselves through the emotions we get. It's our reflection or response toward events or experience we've encountered. It's a strong mental process. Emotion varies depending on the condition: positive; happy, empowered, encouraged or negative: scared, worried, and discouraged. Some people choose to express it while some don't. Also, frequency of change in emotion is related to outside circumstances, such as age, physical condition, and even social status. We, college students, defined as emerging adulthood, tend to be more emotional compared to our parents, adults. I experience it all the time. My roommates and I have conflicts frequently because we respond to each other's behaviors strongly. It's because our emotion is unstable and uneasy to control. Moreover, girls get more emotional and sensitive when they're on their period. However, emotion is an "amusing" state of mind that we possess. Because we experience different emotions at a point of our lives, life is more interesting and fun. It makes life enjoyable and different every day. Emotion makes us alive. Without any emotion, people would be no different than mechanic robots =)


Let's learn to express some emotions!

The Zone of Proximal Development

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Discovered by Russian researcher Lev Vygotsky, the phase when children are most receptive to learning new skills but aren't yet successful at them is known as the zone of proximal development. Before entering this stage, children are in the phase when they cannot learn skills even with assistance from their parents. When children enter the zone of proximal development, they are ready to have their parents help them learn while gradually letting them learn on their own. This is a mechanism Vygotsky referred to as scaffolding. In other terms, in the beginning children require assistance from their parents, but over time they gradually learn independently.
Vygotsky's work was based in guided learning and peer collaboration. It had a large impact on many researchers around the world. His research still remains influential today in the processes of children's learning development.
I believe that Vygotsky's work is very important in understanding learning development. I am planning on majoring in elementary education with a minor in psychology, so this is a concept that will directly relate to the field of work I am pursuing. This is also a very important concept for any potential parent to understand.

The Role of the Father

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Parents are essential for children but when you compare the contributions of each parent toward the child, it becomes very clear why both are needed. Focusing on the father, these are the noticeable aspects arise. Fathers are likely to give less attention, emotion, and time for their child. Fathers devote more of their time with their children in physical play than mothers. Lastly, both gender of children prefer their father as a playmate than their mothers. These observations of the differences between each parent can be important in helping us understand the child's development. Maybe through these traditional roles we will be able to see differences in children with one parents compared to having two.
Applying this concept to my life, the traditional father holds mostly true. My father definitely gave less attention, time or showed less emotion than my mother. The difference between this description and my father is that he showed almost no emotion and was always gone working or sleeping.This would basically rule out the time for physical play and becoming my playmate.
Although these traditional traits of a father mostly hold true, I am interested in the extent of how the role of a father changes throughout different cultures. Another factor that also alters the traditional father figure could be based on income and whether a father can be there to give attention to the child. Also the number of children that a father bears will also change the amount of love a father a share among each child. How a father has risen a child is different for everyone but no doubt, it is of great importance.

Video Games and Violence

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I read an article from CNN, "High Court Accepts Case Over Violent Video Games". The article discusses that there is a dispute in California over a law that banned the sale of violent video games. All video games come with a rating of the level of violence or maturity needed to play the particular video game. For the more violent games, a person must either be 17 years of age, otherwise a parent is required to purchase the game for their child. So clearly, the "kids" playing these games are either old enough to know right from wrong, or their parents are perfectly capable of determining if their child is old/mature enough to handle the video games. With these restrictions, there should be no blame put on video game makers or sellers for children that are violent. Either the parents are to blame for buying a game that their children are not old enough for and they don't explain to their children that things in the game aren't meant to be done in real life. Or a child old enough should be held responsible for not using self control of their anger and emotions. To conclude, let the people of California game!!

Are babies smarter than we think?

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There is a case to be made for both sides of the effectiveness of teaching or introducing babies to simple math and reading. Many would argue that the cognitive abilities of children are not developed enough to correctly perceive basic math and reading until nearly five or six years of age, therefore it is not worth introducing these concepts to such children. They argue that they are not able to perceive the concept of a 'unit', or multiple parts of a whole, until their brain if sufficiently developed.

On the other side of this argument, some argue that most people grossly underestimate the cognitive abilities of babies between a year and two years old. They argue that at this age, babies are able to efficiently learn to perform 'right-brain' math, or math relying on the visual representation of objects. To perform such a feat, babies simply remember visually what a number (or in the case of reading, a word) looks like, and are able to recall a correct answer incredibly fast. This requires no concept of unit -- simply a visual memory.

Based on what I have read, and what we learned in lecture, I believe that there is validity to both arguments. It seems as though small children may not have an effective concept of a unit, and therefore cannot actually 'solve' complicated mathematical problems, as much as remember them. However, teaching them math or reading (remember the "My Baby Can Read!" commercials?) at a young age may not be ineffective, as it does indeed stimulate brain activity, which is a simple but vital part of the learning process for young children.

This website outlines the argument above.

During the November 2 lecture, Professor Gewirtz explained the various startle reflexes human beings have naturally. When the topic of PTSD came into mention, I thought it was worth remembering it as an "exaggerated startle". In essence, many people with PTSD who have gone through a trauma of some sort in their lifetime have a tendency to have an over-compensatory response to things that they are anxious about or scared of. This exaggerated reaction can have an affect on the persons day-to-day peace of mind. I know a person who was mugged one night, and now they are always looking behind/around them to make sure they aren't being followed. Certain jobs in the medical field, military, and law enforcement have the connotation of breeding PTSD sufferers, because those lines of work have the possibility of generating a traumatic experience for their workers.
Here is a link to an article detailing that researchers who did a thorough study found that 1 in 8 soldiers that fought in the Iraq war came back with PTSD.

Wouldn't I Be Happier If...

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ITheGrassisAlwaysGreenerontheOtherSideoftheFence_275_275.jpgf you're like most people you believe the answer would be money, Money will make you happier. Or that living somewhere sunny like Cali would also make you happier. As our textbook has said, these are both myths and won't increase your happiness. The say it won't because we fail to realize things like higher salary usually means more hours, and that while Cali is nice and sunny there are negatives such as high cost of living and crime. I think the real reason however, they don't bring us increased happiness in the long run is because of the Hedonic Treadmill Effect. This is a term described later in the chapter and to put it simply it means we have a set point on our emotions and while we may briefly be very elated or downtrodden we quickly return to our set point of happiness. This to me more accurately explains why money and sunny weather don't increase our happiness in the long run. I also think it helps to explain the grass is greener on the other side effect. In addition, i've personally experienced the Hedonic Treadmill Effect.
        I have experienced this effect when I bought my own car. It had been a dream of mine for a while and it finally happened. When it did I was so excited...for like the first day. Then however, my excitement faded quite rapidly to the point where it didn't seem to matter anymore. At first I was kinda confused as to why I wasn't as excited about my new car and the independence it gave me. Now I realize it was partially due to the Hedonic Treadmill Effect. 
       To me this is an interesting concept especially the part about our set point being genetically influenced and that everyone's differs. I'm curious how you could test how low or high your set point is. I also want to know if it's possible to change your set point through therapy or other ways. 


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