November 2011 Archives

In 2005, pictures were released from Abu Ghraib, a prison in Iraq, showing prisoners of war being abused. In further investigations it was found that military doctors knew of the abuse that was going on and some doctors had even helped cover up or inflict the torture themselves. Other doctors have even helped interrogators develop interrogation tactics using the prisoner's medical information. Some medics refuse to intervene. For example, Navy Medic Petty Officer Carlton Blay watched a guard slap and punch many of the prisoners at Camp Whitehorse in Iraq, but did not stop or report these abuses because he believed that these beatings were reasonable to let prisoner know that "these people were in charge".


As I researched more and more into the Abu Ghraib scandals, I was stunned. The details were shocking, but what haunted me and the rest of the world is if doctors, people who swore and dedicated their lives to protecting others, are capable of letting prison guards get away with torturing captives, violating human rights, and even murdering prisoners, then what else are doctors capable of?

Make up for 11/17 discussion

After reading Professor Wlaschin's blog entry on these different personality types, I decided to do more research and was especially interested with the difference in careers for both personalities. Introverts are more likely to succeed in majors like Computer Engineering, Accounting and Biochemistry. While extroverts tend to lean towards majors like Nursing, Pharmacy and Marketing. Introverts are generally not opposed to people, but they might prefer less contact and fewer conversations. Extroverts enjoy conversation and spending time helping others, but can sometimes be too blunt. These careers make sense based on the description of extrovert and introvert. Personally, I am an extrovert and I want to be a nurse so I find this study pretty relevant. But there are exceptions to every study, and the world definitely needs both personalities to balance each other out.

(Make-up for disc.11/17)
Throughout lecture, it seemed evident throughout all the twin studies and adopted studies that genetics plays the primary role in determining personality. In one case, two twins were separated at birth, yet many years later both shared similar interests, had the same occupation, and had nearly identical scores on their personality tests. I think it is safe to assume that genetics plays an important role in our neurological development. Since our neurological structure contributes to our personality, identical twins would have the same neurological make up and thus similar personalities. In Professor Wlaschin's previous blog, he posted an article that discussed extraverts and their higher potential towards drinking. The article suggested that extroverts are more prone to drinking. Since drinking is typically a social activity, this would make sense. However I couldn't help but think about how alcohol affects personality in the act of drinking. I know people who are usually very introverted, however when intoxicated are extremely social. They will talk non-stop and greet/hug random strangers in the street. Since alcohol affects neurotransmitters in the brain, I wonder if it also affects people's personalities.

I was adopted before I was born. I was picked up by my mother when I was 36 hours old so she is the mother that I have ever known and so I thought it would be interesting to explore the nature vs nurture idea. The last thing that I have to mention is that I know nothing about the women who gave birth to me and so there is nothing about nature that would effect this situation ( ie. I have no biases about this women that I know of). I have come to the conclusion that nurture is a much stronger effect on a person in terms of their beliefs, personality and personal traits. After much effort, and to my dismay, my mother and I have the exact same personality, we act the same way, think the same way and since we are so similar we tend to butt heads on a regular basis.

The only issue with this discovery is that I have no knowledge of my birth mother and so it could just be a coincidence that she and my mother have the same personality, but I am doubting that this is the case.

This article has an interesting look at nature vs nurture in both adoption and twin studies

This Stuff Actually Exists??

Vote 1 Vote

(make up for missing discussion on 11/17)

Everyone has seen a movie where a psychologist is holding a mysterious picture and then asks their client, who is lying on a sofa, what they see in the picture. I never would have guessed that these mysterious pictures are actually a type of projective test that psychologists sometimes use! This projective test is known as the Rorschach Inkblot test, in which examiners ask respondents to look at inkblots and say what it resembles. Examiners then score their answers for numerous characteristics that are supposedly associated with personality traits.

Although the Rorschach has been used quite often for the past decades, it is scientifically controversial. Little evidence has been found that the Rorschach validly detects the features of mental disorders or predicts criminal traits or behaviors. It is rare when two examiners give a respondent the same scores for their response to the inkblots, showing that the Rorschach may not be valid. However, the Rorschach has been successful in predicting schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and a few other conditions marked by abnormal thinking. The Rorschach has its positives and negatives, but it is hard to tell whether it truly is a reliable source.

rorschach inkblot.jpg

The Social Personality

Vote 0 Votes


The personality dimension of introversion extraversion plays a key role for students coming to college for the first time. Possessing traits like warmth, gregariousness, sense of adventure, enthusiasm and ambition can lead to plenty of social attention and personal success. Yet extraverts have two potentially troublesome traits such as impulsivity and dominance than can get them into trouble.

Addictive Personality.pdf

Several studies have shown how introverts differ from extraverts in unique ways. As you examine and think about the findings of these studies, consider what consequences these differences might have on both extraverts and introverts.

Introverts demonstrate faster classical conditioning because they are more easily aroused.

Introverts react more strongly to punishment and extraverts react more strongly to rewards

Extraversion predicts heavy drinking in college students

Now that you've done a bit of serious thinking about introversion and extraversion, for fun try taking the Hidden Brain Damage Scale.docx


Speak Your Mind!

Vote 1 Vote

A little lie here.. A little lie there.. It will never hurt anybody right? Well, no one can guarantee its effects on others, but you can be sure you are hurting yourself; physically and emotionally.

Larry knows how to speak his mind

Telling lies makes a person not only untrue to others but untrue to oneself. Being untrue to oneself is detrimental to life and life's progress across the entire board. To achieve happiness, healthy relationship, and life's goals, it is imperative that humans are true and honest with their own person. Furthermore, lying can cause stress. Therefore, chronic lying, equals chronic stress, and all of us know how detrimental stress is to mental and physical health. Prolonged stress is a known cause in cancer, heart disease, and nameless other problems, so all of us should avoid it.

With this knowledge of lying causes stress, stress causes unhappiness and heightens risks of diseases; next we need to act. If you find yourself being untruthful or telling little lies maybe a little too much, then it is time for a change! Speak your mind! Get your feelings off your chest. This will not only make you more honest with yourself but will increase the trust and integrity of your human relationships. This article, Lying is Bad for Your Health, elaborates on the issues regarding being untruthful and further discusses facts on how to reduce these behaviors and the stress it causes.

How truthful are you? Are you stressed? If so, fix the problem!

Speak your mind --> Don't Lie --> Reduce Stress --> Increase Health

Pump it! (not so loud)

Vote 1 Vote

(Makeup for missed discussion on Sep. 29)

In the previous blog, avira001 discussed the different parts of the ear, more specifcally the pinna. With out a doubt, every part of our auditory system plays an important role in recieving, conducting, and ultamitly transmitting signals to our brain. The combination of the differnt structures such as the pinna in the outer ear, the eardrum in the middle ear, all the way to the inner hair folicles with in the Cochlea combine to give us an extensive auditory function.


Our auditory function is incredible. Humans can pick up on the slightest sounds such as the sound of a paper clip hitting the floor. In our primitive age, this was probably advantageous as it helped us react faster to potential predadors creeping up to attack us. However, today, our extensive hearing can sometimes be a nuisance, (especially when you are in the library trying to write a blog and someone is rustling their papers) as we are able to hear many distractions. Ear plugs do a good job blocking most sound waves, yet our auditory system is still capable of picking up the slightest of sounds.


At the University of Minnesota we are Driven to Discover. Imagine if we invented a device that could some how turn down the internal volume in our heads. Instead of amplifying sounds, like hearing aids do, we could decrease the amount of volume. This way we could sleep peacefully, while our roommates are blasting their music. What do you think?

Childhood obesity rates in this country are astonishing to say the least. In no way can we blame this entire epidemic on the rise of electronic media but it is fair to attribute this rise as a leading cause.

Post World War II, 1946, about 0.5% of all American homes contained televisions, increasing to 55% just ten years later, and now at an incredible average of 2.4 televisions sets per household. (Roberts & Foehr 12) With such widespread electronic distribution to families and households across our nation it is no wonder why children of America devote so much of their time in it.

Despite the physical and obvious negative effects of high electronic usage, it also takes away time that could and should be devoted to outdoor play, unstructured play, or physical play in general. The importance of play is highly valuable to the development process within children including development of "imagination, dexterity, physical, cognitive, and emotional strength." This Articlet elaborates.

So setting aside what negative affects certain video games and video game genres may have on development and future behaviors, there is also the immense issue of the postive aspects of life that it can hinder. Such as physical and unstructured play within children. Now is the time parents kill two birds with one stone: tackle childhood obesity rates and make their children mentally healthier by limiting electronic usage and promoting physical play.

For Childhood Obesity Rates, (Beware, content is disturbing)


Makeup Blog - 11/17/2011 Discussion Section- Intelligence

What do Motzart, MJ, Bill Gates and Van Gogh all have in common?

From a young age we've all been taught that everyone has their own individual talents. That from these talents stem our passions for life that guide us to what we should do, make, study, etc. Everyone may have special talents... but can anyone have all of these talents at once?


The idea of multiple intelligence displays the concept that people vary in their ability levels across areas of intellectual skill. In other words, there are different ways of being smart. Motzart is no Michael Jordan, and Bill Gates is no Vincent Van Gogh but each of these individuals are smart in their own ways, and in their own domains of intelligence.

So what do Motzart, MJ, Bill Gates and Van Gogh all have in common? They are all smart in their own ways!

(Makeup for missed discussion on Sept 29, sorry for the super delay!)

Our senses help us to have knowledge about the world and one of those senses is hearing. As we all know, sound waves are the determents for the sense of hearing. When the sound is examined, three distinct features come into prominence, which are loudness, timbre and pitch. All these features depend on frequency, and complexity.

To describe the form of the ear, the outer ear, the middle ear, and the inner ear must be presented. The pinna, the eardrum, ossicles, oval window, cochlea, and cilia are associated to the form of the ear since they are the essentials.

I think that pinna is the one that seems less important but in essence, its role is massive. Without pinna, we wouldn't be able to hear since it is what catches the sound waves and help other materials of ear to sense the sound.


How Reliable is the IQ Test?

Vote 0 Votes

(Makeup for missed discussion on November 10th)

People are always interested in their level of intelligences and IQ tests are one of the most common ways to measure it. In my opinion, IQ tests are not very reliable in that everyone can score differently in different times if they prepare themselves for the questions. Also, it is about the frequency of using the brain. I mean if you read book, play sudoku, etc very often, then you are more likely to score higher on the IQ test than other people can.

Moreover, this issue has a close relationship with socio-economical status: If one is grew up in a financially poor area, then he/she is more likely to score lower then a person who is well educated. However, the thing is if you take that less-educated person and train him, then he can score better each time he tries harder.



You probably think you are pretty smart. To get some idea of how smart you are relative to the population, a psychologist would have you take the 90 minute Wechsler test. I know you don't have that kind of time now, so how about a 5 minute version?

A Five minute intelligence test

So these questions are a bit tricky but do they measure everything we consider to make up intelligence?Picture 1.png

Think of the smartest person you know. What characteristics can you describe that make this person intelligent?

Is it just one thing or many things? Are those abilities related or distinct. Did that person become intelligent from living in an environment that supported education, did they inherit intelligent genes or did they get that way through hard work and constant study?

These are important questions that psychologists still don't have clear answers for. You may think the 5 minute test above is not exactly a valid test of intelligence but what is?

Some researchers have tried to boil down all of the different types of intelligence tests into a set of 12 that describes the broadest range of cognitive abilities with the fewest amount of tests.

The 12 pillars of wisdom.pdf

Even after scholars examine decades of intelligence research I still wonder if this captures why some people seem smarter than others and why higher levels of intelligence lead to better life outcomes. emotional_intelligence_jpg_230x150_crop-0,0_q85.jpg

In class we discussed a recent study that demonstrated self-control was another important aspect separate from intelligence that accounted for success in life. Others have suggested that motivation may play a role as well.

Intelligence and motivation.pdf

Finally, no matter how smart a person is, if they can't relate to other people their intelligence might be wasted. Many scholars have theorized about emotional intelligence as being essential to communicating ideas to others, gathering the support needed to accomplish goals and leadership to guide the process.

Do you think you could describe what characteristics are involved with emotional or interpersonal intelligence? Complete the activity and then think about how this ability fits with the more traditional view of intelligence as measured by the tests in the 12 Pillars article.

Measuring Interpersonal Intelligence.docx

Body Image

Vote 1 Vote

Growing up, we are exposed to so many things that seem "perfect." Barbie for example, is a familiar figure for many young girls. We see her perfect body,perfect hair and her perfect boy. As we are exposed to this more and more as young kids, the need for perfection is implanted in our brains. We grow up striving for nothing less than perfection. This is something that I think many people can relate to. Unfortunately, thought it may start out as harmless- it can end up having extremely severe and negative results.

We see models and celebrities with the perfect bodies, leaving us feeling as if we are not good enough. In too many cases, this leads to eating disorders. Many eating disorders can result from genetic factors; but they are also triggered by sociocultural expectations . These disorders may seem like no big deal at first, but in addition to the toll on your physical appearance, it has just as much of an impact on you mentally.

My 3 favorite blogs:

1. jack0620- I found the story really interesting about the brother and sister marrying. It proves that though bizarre things may be uncommon-they still occur!
2. Rhode094- We wrote similar blogs about body image, which is an extremely important issue
3.Byexx102-I thought the how to spot a liar was really funny and well written. The stats included in it was something I had never heard before. We as humans don't realize how often we lie.

Over the past several years, anti-aging/wrinkle treatments have been all the rage. It comes in many forms such as creams, gels, and even botox treatments. The article in our text book (page 370) brings up the point that several aging men and women seek the "fountain of youth". Many people fall victim to the "look younger, feel younger" garbage that is displayed and encouraged by the media time and time again. Who says that putting a cream on our face to reduce wrinkles or lift certain features will make us look younger, or even feel younger? This "fountain of youth" that several people search for is leading me to believe that as humans, we are afraid of becoming too old or looking too old. Do we really need creams, gels, botox, etc to help us look and feel older or is it all a mental state that the media has driven into us? In my opinion, looking old and feeling old are relatively different. You can look old without feeling old, and you can feel old without looking old. It really frustrates me that having an "old" appearance is seen as such an ugly concept that men and women should fear and even avoid.

My favorite blog posting from writing four was "Hold on I need to tweet this". The content was just as intriguing as the title. It made me feel almost guilty of the fact that I spend way too much time using my phone when I'm spending time with my friends. Even if only for a short period of time, it is serving as my inspiration to be more aware of the affects my excessive cell phone use is having on my relationships.

My second favorite blog posting was "Is everyone victim to the standards of beauty?" It made me raise a lot of questions as I read through it, but it made me really excited that I was able to do that. I think it is safe to say that several of us are victims to certain standards we hold as far as what we consider to be "beautiful".

My third favorite blog posting was "Peer pressure". The entry was very true to the fact that parents steer us away from certain "friends" for good reasons. As an adolescent, we don't always understand those reasons. But if we all knew back then what we know now, we'd probably praise our parents their choice to restrict our time spent with certain people.

Mozart Babies

Vote 0 Votes

I found the article in our about The Mozart Effect to be rather interesting. The article described that a group of students that listened to a Mozart piano sonata shows a significant improvement on a spatial reasoning task compared to a group that listened to a relaxation tape.

The press soon got ahold of these results and ran with them. Before long companies were making Mozart tapes and CD's geared towards babies, claiming that they will boost an infant's intelligence. But can listening to a certain genre of music really make a child smarter?

Later research showed that the effect shown in the college students was due an increase in emotional arousal. Short-term arousal boosts alertness and is likely to increase performance on mentally demanding tasks. So while it can be a good idea to let young children listen to Mozart's work, it won't turn them into tiny geniuses.


My favorite blog post was "How to Spot a Liar" by byexx102. I liked it because it was easy to read and understand and the attached video was great.

My next favorite post was "Why People Don't Like to Touch Strangers" by cenxx009. I really liked the image used in this post and the writer did a good job of explaining his points.

My third favorite post was "No More Chinese for Her" by goss0092. I liked this one because I love food and I can relate to her and her sister.

Mozart Babies

Vote 0 Votes

I found the article in our about The Mozart Effect to be rather interesting. The article described that a group of students that listened to a Mozart piano sonata shows a significant improvement on a spatial reasoning task compared to a group that listened to a relaxation tape.

The press soon got ahold of these results and ran with them. Before long companies were making Mozart tapes and CD's geared towards babies, claiming that they will boost an infant's intelligence. But can listening to a certain genre of music really make a child smarter?

Later research showed that the effect shown in the college students was due an increase in emotional arousal. Short-term arousal boosts alertness and is likely to increase performance on mentally demanding tasks. So while it can be a good idea to let young children listen to Mozart's work, it won't turn them into tiny geniuses.


Born Without Emotions?

Vote 0 Votes

(Makeup for missed discussion on October 27th)

After recently watching through the first three seasons of the hit Showtime series Dexter, I began to think about how his emotions can be viewed in psychology.

Dexter Morgan, the main character in the show, works in forensics for the Miami Metro Police Department and specializes in blood analysis. He is extremely proficient at his job, but he holds a very dark secret; he is a serial killer. Ever since he was a little boy, Dexter had urges to kill. His Dad began to notice this and he decided to train Dexter to kill only other killers that are dangerous and could do the deed again. After his dad dies, no one else knows of Dexter's secret as he is very good at what he does. As the show progresses it is clear that Dexter has little emotional attachment to any thing in his life. How can this be? Why would someone not experience the emotions that any normal human would?

After doing some research, it is clear that Dexter is a psychopath. Psychopathy is a mental disorder characterized primarily by a lack of empathy and remorse, shallow emotions, egocentricity, and deceptiveness. Psychopaths are also known to have a low tolerance for boredom and a need for excitement. These are both characteristics that Dexter displays throughout the show.

How does someone become a psychopath? There are a number of reasons. Genetics and traumatic childhood experiences are both causes could have influenced Dexter. He witnessed his mother's murder as a toddler which could have led to his disorder. He also discovered that he has a serial killer brother. This shows how genetics can play a role.

Dexter is an incredible show that should definitely be checked out by anyone who is interested in Psychology, or just wants an entertaining series to start watching!dexter-pfwa.jpeg

You see shows like Maury and Montel, where they have couples who are unsure of their partners fidelity come with the belief that a polygraph test will prove or disprove their uncertainties. Lies are extremely difficult to prove, and yet people rely on it so much. So the question is, Is it possible to detect when someone is lying? Experts in the psychology field have recently been brought to the research that concludes MRI's are more capable of detecting lies than the traditional lie detector tests, which rely on irregular heart beats, skin and blood pressure, but the new fMRIs and brain scans are being incorporated to become a powerful forensic tool, which compares greatly to the polygraph test, which have many potential flaws. Plus there are methods that can be used to BEAT lie detector testing, which makes it that much more discredited. So why does the government, law enforcement, and shows like Maury stand by polygraph? Maybe because its statistically better at testing lies, than by chance alone.

My top 3 blogs:

1. erics096 Walk that way, thought it was interesting how you linked body movement and beauty. Great visuals!

2. byexx105, Taking a trip down memory lane. It was very thoughtful, and I also wonder how my childhood neighborhood would look to me if i were to go back today.

3. khori002, "That awkward moment when...Great visual! I can definitely relate, I'm always going through the tip of the tongue syndrome.

peer pressure.

Vote 2 Votes

Think back to high school for a moment. Was there ever a time you can remember that your parents/caregiver said you couldn't hang out with someone because they were a bad influence? Well, your parents may have knew more than you once thought.

Peers actually do have a great influence over us! I myself can think of a few times when I hadn't planned on ever doing anything I wasn't supposed to, but my friends made me think it was the greatest idea ever....right. Those "great ideas" led to my getting grounded! Now if I had only listened when my parents told me not to hang out with that certain someone....

Why Hatred Exists

Vote 2 Votes

One topic I found particularly striking, is the quite recent research on hate. Hate is a controversial topic, but one that should not be ignored. With the attacks on 9/11, and all the terrible things that happen in the world, it is in our interest to understand why hatred exists. Much like love, we should be able to explain the extent and degrees of hatred, so that we can better understand the motives and actions of those who experience hatred.

One person to spearhead the theory of Hatred was Robert Sternberg, and quite simply there are three elements to hatred in varying degrees:

• Dislike of intimacy - not wanting to get close to people
• Passion - Literally despising people
• Commitment - Intent to harm or do something else to someone

A combination of these three provide a basic framework for differing types of hatred. Whether that is from Jihadists, Protestors, Terrorists, or otherwise; hatred can be basically explained by this theory.
hitlerpsych.jpegBut, as hate has been found to be a mostly learned behavior that means it can be unlearned. What do you think of Hatred in the sense of human nature? Is it a learned component of our lives, or is someone born with hatred? Can someone really learn to stop hating someone/something?

Three favorite blogs:
"Hollywood vs. Amnesia" - I really enjoyed the connection to pop culture and the role of amnesia as a plot device, because it made it that much more relevant and entertaining.
"Hypnobirthing, Does it Work???" - Seeing as I have no perspective on childbirth, this post gave me a little insight into the possible pseudoscience that can occur in this of all places.
"I remember nothing..." - I really love the false memory created of Bugs being at Disney, even though he was a Warner Brothers character, and the idea that we may fabricate memories more than we can remember.

em + pathos

Vote 0 Votes

(Make-up for discussion group on Thursday, November 3rd)

To answer a central question of "Similarity, Attraction and the Art of Blushing," no, I do not really want to look like the object of my affection 25 years from now!

What an odd phenomenon, this facial similarity in longstanding couples. What purpose does it serve? A key phrase in the article was, "silent empathy." In elaboration on his speculative view involving gradual face-shaping via repetition of mimicry, Dr. Zajonc says, ''Facial mimicry allows a truer empathy because it triggers the same inner state. Couples can understand each other much better when this happens.'' It would be interesting to somehow look at oxytocin, the hormone most popular for bonding, in relation to the process.

I think a science fiction novel could utilize this idea in imaginings of how alien races formed. First bonding, then mimicry, then assimilation... and the production of a hormone resembling oxytocin?

the urge.png

But what about other hormones? I'd like to see a study on which partner changes more toward the other towards similarity. Does person A become more like person B, or vise versa? Why would this be? Sex differences seem like a good place to start; it has been suggested that testosterone reduces empathy.

If this is the case and if Zajonc's view is correct, in a heterosexual couple, would the woman's appearance change more dramatically? The changes may be too subtle to measure. I can't help but think of the famous "urge to merge," the popularized and stereotypical tendency of partners in a lesbian relationship to become quickly and drastically similar one another.

Blame It On My Friends

Vote 2 Votes


Do you have any friends? Most likely the answer is yes and if it's no, you should find one as they can be the ones to blame if you ever get in trouble!
I read the Peer vs. Parents section in Human development and found it extremely interesting. Though it doesn't go very in depth into the findings, I agree that peers could possibly be more of an influence than that of the parents. I feel that there's been numerous of cases where everyone has done something, that they normally wouldn't have done, in order to fit in a certain type of groups. Also, with children learning at very young ages, with just first impressions of the things that their peers do could influence them to think differently. Though Judith Rich Harris' claim may not be 100% accurate, I believe there are some truth in it and that peers do shape the development of a child's social life more than their parents.

Have your parents ever tell you to not surround yourself around a certain type of people?

Favorite Blogs:
1) "Can Money Buy Happiness?" I like this post because it poses the question that I think everyone has heard before numerous times. It's always an interesting topic to pick at and discuss and the photo that he provided was just great.
2)"Are You My Mother?" Would probably my second favorite. I'm really interested in topics regarding animals and psychology, I find the animals love for the man extremely interesting.
3)"Does your significant other look like he/she could be your sibling?!" I like this post because it brought up a topic, that I think, is kind of uncomfortable. I don't think anyone wants to think that their boy/girlfriend looks like their sister/brother!

Training my Pup

Vote 3 Votes


As a dog owner, I have been thinking about how to train my pup to go hunting with me. However, he doesn't like fireworks so I fear he certainly won't like the sound of my gun. This may also be because he's a pug and not a black lab!

I have come to learn puppies need to experience various stimuli before the age of three months in order to securely withstand life's stressful events. In other words, what puppies haven't seen during this critical period, they will fear as adults. This corresponds with the period of imprinting. This demonstrates how an animal acquires his identity during a critical period of brain development. It is called period of imprinting because the animal forms his identity based on the available social contact present. Knowing this, a question comes to mind, how do I prevent this behavior from developing in the first place?

Favorite Blogs:
1. "Zombie Ants!" The article's title instantly grabs my attention and it generally raises questions. I'm a zombie fan altogether though!
2. "A Game of Emotion." I grew up playing hockey, so it was easy to relate too and accurate as to how it feels being on the ice.
3. "How to Spot a Liar." Her blog had a nice flow to it and I liked how she linked society to negativity and how we're guilty of doing it and continue to do it even after we connect the relationship.

This section got me thinking about economics, consumption, protests...What is the correlation between our desire to consume material objects or sensory stimuli and how quickly that perceived-level of happiness and satisfaction gained wears off? Is there such a thing as becoming desensitized to consumption, similar to being desensitized to violence as we discussed in class?

This article is only loosely concerned with these things, but in light of continuing economic deterioration for many people, I think there's something to be analyzed about how the illusion created around trying to materially satisfy ourselves may have reached a peak with our collective peak-consumption period, and more people all the time (maybe the self-proclaimed "99%"?) are realizing the treadmill is moving too fast to keep up. blog4-3.jpg

My favorite was "Health and Happiness" by E. Carriere; it asks many thought-provoking questions.
My next is "Hold on I need to Tweet This" by leuxx016; I love Louis C.K. - cynical bliss.
My next favorite is "Engaged Couple..." by jack0620; the story is just creepy and funny.

The principle of emotional intelligence was something that I had heard very little of before reading chapter 9 in the textbook. Countless times I've been drawn to taking "IQ Tests" though I'd never once seen an "EQ Test." Emotional intelligence is defined as the ability to understand our emotions and those of others, and to apply this information to our everyday lives. As it turns out, our good friend Dr. Thorndike contributed more to psychology than his law of effect. He was also a founder of the principle of social intelligence, which is now known as emotional intelligence. You could all read this long, boring article, but for those of you with other homework to do, I'll summarize it for you; emotional intelligence is an important factor to success in many fields of work. thorndike.gif

<The E.L. Thorndike, master of cat boxes

Really enjoyed the video of the German kid yelling at his computer and destroying everything he could find.

Excellent video, and a nice concise post.

This blog was concise and to the point. It included a visually appealing comic to draw attention to it.

According to our text book, people tend to agree at higher than chance levels about who is, and isn't, physically attractive. Across the world men and women tend to agree on this culture phenomenon. There is even a "perfect" waist-to-hip ratio for both of the sexes.

If these so called "standards of beauty" are universally recognized, do "less attractive" people chose a mate whom they know is not attractive? Or are they just as attracted to them as they are to an attractive person?

According to the book, couples pair together based on physical attractiveness. Basically, 2's with pair with 2's, 8's with 8's, etc. So the question is, are the 2's attracted to the other 2's, or do they fall victim to the "standards of beauty" discussed in the book and essentially "settle"?

Does your significant other look like he/she could be your sibling? - I enjoyed this blog because people often tell me that my boyfriend and I look alike! After reading this, I began to look at all the couples I know and realized that this trend is actually pretty prevalent!

Grand Theft Auto - Training kid killers - I liked this blog because the topic of media and violence is very interesting to me. After doing a report on the Columbine shooting in Colorado, this controversial topic always catches my attention.

lipsticks, eye shadow, mascara... worthy stuff? - I really liked this blog because as a girl, I am always intrigued by the effects of makeup. It's also interesting to read about how wearing it can change your whole mood.

Smells Like Tean Spirit

Vote 0 Votes

Can you all just do me a favor?

Can you just grab your textbook, open up to page. 381, and read that little blirb on the bottom picture? Just read it. Did you do it? Did you smack yourself on the head and go "REALLY? 'Less guilty by reason of adolescence'?"

Maybe this is just my one opinion, but I happen to think that is ridiculous. Now I am by no means denying the research showing that teens are still developing the regions of their brains controlling planning, decision making, and even impulse control. But I feel like teens still have the ability to choose where these struggles will be; you can either struggle with planning your work load and other responsibilites, or you can struggle with planning out what happens after you steal those nice pair of shoes.


So many adults view teenagers as this strange subspecies of humans (here is a silly clip showing my point, when in fact most teenagers do not struggle with the stereotypes shown in the media (such as drunk driving and early pregnancies).

Again, I understand that teenagers are literally not as mentally mature as adults, but to say that someone is "less guilty by reason for adolescence" is like almost like saying "less guilty by reason of being really really mad". Anyone who commits a crime is obviously going to be in at least some type of different mental state, even if its something as simple as rationalizing your actions.

So long story short, being a teenager does not make you an idiot.

p.s. Can I just say that the first paragraph of Chapter 10 made "The Secret of NIMH" make so much more sense?Secret of NIMH.jpg

My three favorite blogs were:

1. There is No Escaping Change
I really thought that this was a very thought provoking topic. It is something that I believe we should all come to terms with, and understand before we learn it the hard way. I also really liked the picture and thought it was clever :)

2. Why Hatred Exists
I feel that this too is also a very important topic. Hate is one of the worst types of crimes a person can make, and its an easy one at that. I also thought it was interesting that the contrast of love was also brought in.

3. Types of Intelligence
I have always found a fascination in seeing how different people are skilled at different things. I'm that person who loves taking all of those "career tests" and "personality quizes", just because I enjoy seeing how different types of intelligence/thinking affects areas of your life.

Wasted my time again!

Vote 1 Vote

After reading about the Mere exposure effect, I finally figured out why I've always hated my school pictures. The mere exposure effect stated that if we were exposed to the same thing numerous times, we would be more likely to favor it. All the time I spent trying to look nice for school picture; all went to waste because of the mere exposure effect. I really thought that I looked good for the school pictures and double check with my mom to make sure I look good. But yet again, another failure. Though, the mere exposure effect explains why my mom would like my school pictures and why I would not. Since my mom was repeatedly exposed to the image of me, similar to the school pictures, she would favor it. And since I was more exposed to the mirror image of me, I would find the mirror image of me to be more favorable than my school pictures. Did you like your school pictures??

My favorite blog was "New emoticons - I feel awkward!!!" by xiao0100 because I also do believe that we should incorporate emoticons in our text to should emotions.
My next favorite was "Opposites Attract...Or Do They?" by leex5571 because she does a nice job in explaining the three major principles that guide attraction and relationship formation.
My third favorite was "Pump It Up!" by mehlh017 because she does a great job in explaining motivation. For instance, too little or too much motivation would cause you to perform not as well. Whereas, just the right amount of motivation will help you perform well.

Have you ever talked to somebody who you can clearly tell has no interest in conversing with you? Or have you ever had a conversation with somebody who you have no interest in conversing with? People can tell a lot about your emotions and feelings according to your body language and gestures. For example something very common especially in current day is talking to someone who is texting on their phone. This can be taken as a very rude gesture and can give off the message that you are clearly not as important as the person receiving the text. body gestures

Body gestures/ language can display the mood you are feeling today. For example, lets say you just got an "A" on a midterm, some people might throw their hands up in the air and shout "YES!". However even if you just through your hands up in the air with a smile, most people would be able to tell you are in a ecstatic mood. Even while in class, or in a sitting position, if an individual is slouching then we can assume the person is sad or not content with their current state. In class tomorrow can you determine peoples emotions by their gestures?

My favorite post was "training my pup" because I found it very interesting how training a pup is affected by a critical period or event during brain development. This is very true in making sure a dog knows to use the bathroom outside, or to not bite humans.

My next favorite post was "Abortion another form of birth control" because it brought up a highly controversial topic that is up for much debate in terms of how to view abortion. The key fact that stood out to me was how the brain begins to develop after 18 days of fertilization. I am against abortion and even more now knowing that the brain begins to develop this early in the process.

My third favorite post was "Truth and Lies..." because it brings up yet another highly controversial topic. I agree with the fact that even though researches argue they can prove when someone is lying using a lie detector test, how can we be sure these test are even accurate. So many factors can influence people responses even if they seem as if they're lying.

Extreme Beauty

Vote 0 Votes

The art of attraction has pushed our society to extremes. To look at this we must understand the basic qualities men and women look for...

Instinctually, women look for protection for their offsprings and themselves causing traits like the ability to provide for a family (wealth) and the ability to ward of predators (strength).

One can see where these traits have manifested themselves in modern society. Most men's goal in life is to become wealthy, where as most women dream of having children. The film "Tough Guise" looks at the extremes masculinity has reached today. For many impoverished men, the prospect of wealth is out of reach and thus their focus turns to finding a way to gain respect from other men and the affection of women through being perceived as powerful by becoming very strong. Action figures today have larger muscles than ever, surpassing what is physically possible. Men who are not strong, seek respect through appearing larger by wearing baggy clothing, similar to the way a dog puffs up his fur when under attack. Another way for men to gain this respect comes from carrying weapons and attempting to inflict fear in others thus becoming "strong" in a different sense.

Tough Guise opening scene

Women conversely, are desired for their ability to reproduce at a most basic level of sexual attraction. Thus, traits like large hips which allow a wider birth canal and large breasts which allow for more milk to support young children have been selected for. In the same way as action figures, dolls have gone to extremes in our culture. Take the barbies tiny waist or the even more extreme bratz dolls. here is what barbie would look like in real life taken from the website linked below...

Life-size barbie

Average woman's height is 5'4″
Their weight is approx. 140 lbs.
They wear a size 14 dress
Their bust is between 36″ and 37″ (B cup)
Their waist is between 30″ and 34″
Their hips average between 40″ and 42″
Their shoe size is estimated to be between 8.5 and 9.5

Barbie's height would be 7'2″
Her weight would be 101 lbs.
She would wear a size 4 dress
Her bust would be 39″ (FF cup)
Her waist would be 19″ (same as her head)
Her hips would be 33″
Her shoe size would be a 5

Needless to say, as our culture evolved, our perception of masculinity and femininity have evolved as well. But how can anyone live up to the expectations our society now puts on our shoulders?

Favorite blogs...
my first choice was sunxx592's blog "Does your significant other look like he/she could be your sibling?!" i enjoyed this post because i cannot deny the fact that my boyfriend shares many similar features with my brother, although i try to ignore that fact!

I also liked rosen685's post "Animals Lie" because it reminded me of a movie we watched in my Anthropology class called "clever monkeys" which showed some adorable monkey's using the art of deception.

Lastly i enjoyed jack0620's post "Engaged couple discover they are brother and sister when their parents meet just before wedding" because of the interesting idea that you would be attracted to someone who has similar genes to you... EXTREMELY similar.

Walk That Walk

Vote 1 Vote


Physical attractiveness plays a major role in overall attractiveness to another person. People that are more physically attractive tend to be more popular and have more physically attractive partners that people that are physically unattractive. Scientists have found that body shape and body movement are key factors in being "beautiful".
Studies done by the Texas A&M University showed that when women walked with hip sway, their attractiveness ratings were about 50% higher than without. In the same study, attractiveness ratings for men more than doubled when they walked with a swagger in their shoulders. So, next time you want grab a guy or girl's attention, just add a little "swag" to your step.
I'm glad to see that physical attractiveness isn't all through genetics. I wonder if stance also has the same affect on physical attractiveness?

My favorite post was Returning From the Dead because I have always wondered wether or not stories of people dying, leaving their body and coming back to life is real or just a trick of the mind.
My next favorite was Dirty Little Secrets because it is so hard to believe that people can do such horrible things when they are told to, yet there is very strong evidence to support it.
My third favorite was Color Blind Test because I learned that colorblind people can actually see the number that they aren't supposed to see in colorblindness tests when they are told the number.

b walk.gif

why people love video games

Vote 0 Votes

In the discussion section this week, we discussed the question whether restriction is needed for video games. After that, I came up with another question, why people love video games.
My opinion is, people love video games because it can give people a chance to experience a totally different life. Not everyone can be a great football player and win the champion every year. But most of us can purchase "NFL 2012" and won everything in that game. Not everyone witness the World War, but most of us can get a "Call of duty 5" and imagine themselves as part of the war.
That is why video games producer need to make the video game violence and unreal. Because no one want to experience daily scene and daily feeling in a video game. Can you imagine a 14 years old boy playing video game which simulate cooking in kitchen or cleaning bedroom?KJL%LVMZ)(QN2T6WEKXSGSF.jpg

my favorite one is Animals Lie by rosen685, I really love the picture, which really explain everything in the whole entry

second one is HONEY BADGER DON'T CARE!!!! by Mossa . The honey badger is just so cute

my third choice is Does your significant other look like he/she could be your sibling? from sunxx592. the content is really interesting.

Health and Happiness

Vote 2 Votes


According to a section of Chapter 11 of our text, the common sentiment "I wish you health and happiness" may be flirting with redundancy; it seems health and happiness are tied at the hip, correlation/causation kerfuffles aside. A package deal, perhaps?

One thing that has suggested some degree of causation between happiness and another facet of life--open mindedness--is an experiment undertaken by Isen, Rosenzweig, and Young: "Doctors who were given small bags of candy made more accurate diagnoses of liver disease than other doctors, apparently because being in a good mood allowed them to consider alternative diagnostic possibilities." This finding supports the broaden and build theory.

Why on earth does this happen? What is it about happiness that predicates broadening of our minds? Does happiness expand our vision? Does it increase feelings of self worth, helping us to abandon defensive, rigidified mindsets? Does it reduce the inherent fear we as humans often harbor for new thoughts and ideas? How big is the correlation between happiness and knowledge?

For some ancient philosophers, the answer to that question is a perfect 1.


  • My favorite post was "Nature vs. Nurture: Self-identity Questions" because it was thoughtful with many independent ideas, provided a unique perspective, and resonated with my previous liberal arts education.
  • My next favorite was "Homosexuality, Nature or Nurture?" because, due to its relevance to current debates, its inherently somewhat inflammatory nature, and the vast amounts of new research available to the topic at hand, it provided the opportunity for some good discussion.
  • My third favorite was "What's the underlying cause?" because both the subject matter and the way it was written seemed to beg for discussion seeking to clarify terms and expand hypotheses.

I have always wondered how "lie detectors" work. How is it possible that a machine can know whether or not what I am saying is true, and more so, how can it be proven? While reading chapter 11, I learned that these so called "lie detectors" are truly not proven to be completely accurate. In fact, the most common, the Polygraph test, simply measures when the receiver is aroused. These two are not always connected, and furthermore, there are many ways to fool the machine.

It appears to me that there is no way to be completely sure whether someone is lying or speaking the truth. While there are physical mannerisms and brain waves that can signal arousal, there is nothing that can directly detect lying. Lying vs. the truth is one of the biggest mysteries out there, because with what we know now, there is no way for it to be certainly proven. Will this mystery ever be solved?

Favorite Blogs:
1. Can Money Buy Happiness? by bauer511. I really liked how they used a real experiment to describe what they were talking about. The concept of "buying happiness" is very intriguing.
2. lipsticks, eye shadow, mascara...worthy stuff? by araxx003. I liked the image they chose of the same woman, one image with make up and one without. It is eye-opening to the point that women these days can and do transform themselves to appear attractive, and also to help their confidence. Is this a healthy way to live?
3. Are you my mother? malon271. I enjoyed this post because this topic interested me while I was reading the textbook. It is so mind-boggling how a goose could really believe a person is its mother.

Hey Kids Want Some Candy?

Vote 0 Votes

I thought the section about children and strangers in chapter ten to be pretty interesting. I didn't know that there was an actual term for Stranger Anxiety. I also didn't know that this did not exist in children under eight months of age. It explains all the last time i visited my relatives and their baby. The kid screamed for about 10 minutes when i tried to hold him. Stranger anxiety is a common characteristic in young children so it makes prefect sense now. Children develop such strong bonds to their primary caregivers, that they are likely to feel uneasy around someone who has an unfamiliar face. There are many positive strategies that a child's caregiver can undertake to help manage their child's anxiety. Maybe I see my little cousin next time I'll bring him a toy.

1. My favorite blog was Zombie Ants. Since the birth of Nazi Zombies it appears that the world has a new obsession with zombies now and i've jumped on the zombie band wagon.

2. My second favorite blog was the one about dolphins with lasers on their heads. It made me laugh and tied nicely into what we were discussing in class that week.

3. my third favorite was paranormal activites = psuedoscience. It was interesting because it was something that we could all relate too seeing how the third movie just came out.

Hold On I Need to Tweet This

Vote 3 Votes

One of my biggest pet peeves is when you are talking to someone and they pull out their cellphone to read a text or check something else. This is a very common theme now a days, with Twitter, Facebook and many other social networks. It is one thing that I think our generation struggles with. I found this funny clip with the comedian Louis C.K. talking about his take on smartphones and social networks.

Thinking about how we are perceived while on our phones is something that I have been thinking about for this blog. I find it that when someone is starring down at their cellphone, it puts off a very negative vibe. To me it seems as though the person is closed off from everything around them. While I love technology and think that social networking has immense benefits for society and connecting people around the world, it can become over powering. I am by no means criticizing texting or Facebook, but I am questioning what type of body language we portray while we are starring down at our cellphones and not aware of our surroundings. I would be very interested to hear what others think about this topic. Do you think people can be over indulged with their cellphones and that it portrays a negative image.

One of favorite posts during this semester was "Funny transliterated Chinglish" because I studied abroad this past semester in China and found many different signs translated to English that made absolutely no sense.

Another favorite post was "How Siblings Learn From Each Other?" because it is something that I was definitely aware of growing up. I had an older brother and observed what worked for him and what did not, and then I incorporated those things into my own life.

My final favorite post was "Waiting Until the Last Minute, Again?!" because I feel as though everyone procrastinates and I found it very interesting reading about the strategy to overcome this horrible flaw.

While looking through chapter 10 I found infant determinism to be extremely interesting. It is the assumption that our early experiences, in our first three years, determine how we will act in adulthood. However, we can't assume later experiences in our lives don't play a role in our thoughts and behaviors. I think this is interesting because there is always a way someone can change if they seek help (assuming they don't like how they turned out). Early experiences can shape who we are but they don't define us.


1). I really liked the picture of the multiple intelligences that freem467 included in her blog. I never knew there were so many different areas of intelligence that one could possess.
2). I liked the study bauer511 found. I think it's interesting that chocolate was found to be eaten faster by people who looked at the money (wealth) versus looking at the neutral picture.
3). I thought the statistics that rhode094 found on how much women spend annually on beauty products was outrageous, but I definitely can believe it when I think about how much women tend to spend on beauty.

On the section of Motivation, one thing I found interesting was the concept of conflicting drives. This occurs when approach and avoidance drives clash with themselves and each other. The tendency to approach comes from an inclination toward situations, like eating food or going to a party; avoidance is a disposition away from situations, like making the food or getting grounded for sneaking out.


In addition to approach-avoidance conflicts, two approach drives can conflict, as well as two avoidance drives. I am all too familiar with the effects of conflicting drives. Often during the summer I find myself making the decision of going out and mowing the lawn or getting yelled at by my mom, which is an avoidance-avoidance conflict.

My roommates and I have also succumbed to the effects of conflicting drives whenever we lose the remote. This is an example of an approach-avoidance conflict. We'll find ourselves watching three episodes of Maury before the will to find better programming, approach, outweighs our laziness of not wanting to walk across the room, avoidance. Now I'm going to find the remote before I have to listen to "You are not the father" again.

My favorite post was HONEY BADGER DON'T CARE!!!!! because it was funny and had some good visuals.

My next favorite was Zombie Ants! because it linked an awesome article and posed some interesting questions.

My third favorite was Frickin' Dolphins With Frickin' Laser Beams On Their Fricken Heads...well sort of because he showed a very interesting example of conditioning and I love Austin Powers.

Types of Intelligence

Vote 2 Votes

The part in chapter 9 about multiple types of intelligence was interesting to me because i did not realize there were certain categories for each type. Naturalistic intelligence allows us to discriminate among living things, while musical intelligence deals with timbre, rhythm and tone. Logical-mathematical, verbal/linguistic, and virtual/spatial intelligence are pretty self explanatory. Intra-personal intelligence allows one to understand oneself, while interpersonal helps us communicate with others. Bodily-kinesthetic intelligence is what most athletes have. Existential intelligence deals with the capacity to understand deep topics and ponder the meaning of life. I am curious as to how much of a specific intelligence type belongs to people of different professions. For example, do you think athletes are not as musically talented? Or perhaps philosophers do not have as developed naturalistic intelligence.


Vote 1 Vote

IQ's; I have always believed that your IQ score was for the most part a good measure of intelligence, I mean I knew it was not 100% accurate but I believe it gave a fairly good measure of your intelligence . I however did not know and have never really thought about their being other types of intelligence besides mathematics and science. However after thinking about it and reading I realized that their were different types of intelligence; musical, artistic, sports, and many other types that I normally would not associate with intelligence. But I mean Beethoven was a genius but was he an excellent mathematician? Beethoven.jpg

My favorite post was: A family of geese, because when I was younger that was my absolute favorite movie, I watched it way to many times. Also I always find it interesting how you can learn knew things and then relate them back to stuff in your life for example imprinting with geese, which is not something you would expect to happen.
My next favorite was: Does your significant other look like he/she could be your sibling?! because I do think its interesting that their all the statistics and reasons that you wouldn't expect to have a big impact on how you choose you significant other, I mean who would think that having similar facial features to be one of those factors.
My third favorite was: Tell the Whole Truth and Nothing but the Truth because I am very intrigued by law and court hearings and I do find it very interesting that even though you may think and truly believe that you are telling the truth you may not be.

The numbers of homosexual couples are increasing. At least 10 million people have one or more lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender parent. Despite the distinctive roles that mothers and fathers often play in children's lives, children raised by same-sex couples are any worse off than those raised by normal couples. As long as they split their mother and father role, children will have normal social adjustment outcomes, academic performance, and sexual orientation. Social psychologist says that "well adjusted heterosexual" whose upbringing proves that love, not gender, makes family. The children of lesbian couple appeared to be less aggressive, more nurturing to peers, and more tolerant of diversity.

Do you think children who are being raised by same sex couple at a disadvantage because is it unnatural?

Favorite Blogs
1) Abortion; Another form of birth control? -I think this is a good topic to discuss about. I think abortion is an option because it is same as killing the babies.
2) A woman's greatest asset is her beauty- I agree that the media affects people's body image. Models make you think you are fat. They emphasize that people need to be thin and the conception that thin is only acceptable body type.
3) Love abroad- I think this topic is interesting because some behavior might be allowed in some countries, but some are not. Western countries are more opening minded about the relationship between guys and girls.

What is Love?

Vote 0 Votes

An age old question, What is Love? Many have sought after the answer to this age old question and yet it still remains one of life's great mysteries. Upon reading the section on the types of love in chapter 11 it stood out to me that Sternberg's triangular theory of love was the most accurate in my opinion. What makes love so hard to classify is that it takes on many different forms depending on who it is directed towards and where a person is at in their lives. We all have our own specific needs whether they be intimacy, passion, commitment or some combination of the three. In my opinion love is initiated by passion and intimacy. In general the desire to be close to someone and share ones secrets and desires is what prompts most to seek out "love". As we put ourselves out there and find that we can trust the other the commitment to the relationship takes effect. We don't want to let the other person down so we are going to be there time and again for them like they are there for us. Regardless of what love means to you I think that what makes it so special is that it is a great risk. The vulnerability factor is what makes love so painful and rewarding at the same time.

Can Money Buy Happiness?

Vote 5 Votes

Psychologists at the University of British Columbia set out to find an answer to this long time question. The researchers recruited volunteers to taste a piece of chocolate, but before tasting the delicious treat they were shown a picture. One group was shown a picture of money while the other was shown a neutral picture. After the experiment the researchers concluded that the group of participants that were shown the picture of money before eating the chocolate spent less time eating the chocolate and were observed enjoying it less. In conclusion the researchers argued that because wealth allows you to experience the best that life has to offer, it undermines your ability to enjoy life's little pleasures. I know you would want to argue that if you were gifted with wealth your life would be much happier but would it really?

My favorite post was How to Spot a Liar because her post was short, easy to read, and to the point, she also had a good video to go along with it.

My next favorite was A Family of Geese because it was well written, and a great topic I found enjoyable to read.

My third favorite was Why People Don't Like to Touch Strangers because it was a fun topic that was well structured and had an good flow to it.

But I Don't Wanna....!!!

Vote 0 Votes

Want to get someone to do something YOU want? Give them something THEY want. Motivation refers to the drives -- especially wants and needs -- that propel us in specific directions. When we know that we'll be given something we want or need, we tend to work harder and faster to reach that point. In other words - we're motivated. These wants and needs that are rewarded to us can be refereed to as incentives.


Using an incentive program, many managers are able to get their employees to reach company goals. The extrinsic motivation provided by the rewards helps to motivate the employees to reach the external company goal. This is shown in a scene from the popular TV series, The Office, at 2:45 mins. Although this is an extreme example - it shows how you can get people to behave the way you want them to ... if you're willing to give them something they want in exchange.

Favorite Blogs:
1.How to Spot a Liar! (byexx102) - it was a good length, focused on an interesting topic and used a video to illustrate her point.

2.Johnny wants a pair of skates, Suzy wants a doll: Constructing a Christmas world (Mary) -- it was very relevant-- to both the season and the textbook! It got me thinking more about ca child's understanding of the world.

3.Engaged couple discover they are brother and sister when their parents meet just before wedding (jack0620) - it took the information in the text about attraction one step further and shared a great video to display this.

Yes this is true! The siblings were seperated after a divorce between their parents. Mom took the daughter (at 8months old) and Dad took the son (at 2yrs old). The big question is how? How could this happen? After reading chapter 11 (specifically about attraction), I thought what if two people were too much alike or even worse relatives?! Hoping that eventually the chapter would adress my question about such a thing occuring, but coming up with no answers led me to find this amazing documentary about sex appeal. According to this discovery channel documentary on the science of sex appeal, we should be able to "sniff out" our relatives...

Apparently these siblings noses wern't working correctly. To make matters worse before finding out they were relatives, the woman (sister) is due to give birth to their child soon! For more details on this story go to:

Our book says there are 3 principles regarding attraction: proximity, similarity and reciprocity, buit I think they also forgot to mention genetics.stock-photo-3063200-brother-and-sister-getting-along.jpg

Top 3 articles
1. "how to spot a liar" by byexx102. I have always been interested in this whole concept of body language. I wondered if its really true. My boyfriend tells me all the time "I can always tell when something is bothering you because your face gives you away" I think these signs are common in some people, but we can't apply this to everyone (generalization)
2. "A game of emotions" by hillm109. I liked the photo, but as I said in the comment, it made me thin about the effects of violence on gender. In the book it said that males who witness violence are more likely to violent compared to females who view violence at a young age. In chapter 10 it also talks about the influences on gender roles (men engage in more physical play with their sons, while women take their daughters shopping) He used hockey in his post, but being that I love football, I often look at the physical (and sometimes violent) nature of the sport. Men actually enjoy smashing and hitting each other! Farve loved it so much he couldn't make up his mind when to leave the game!
3. "Why people don't like to touch strangers" by cenxx009. Personal space differs among cultures and as a Spanish Major, I learned this the hard way. The first Spanish instructor I had (in 9th grade) asked for a volunteer. While standing in front of the class, she told the class she was going to have a conversation with me. She began to approach, but when she got too close I backed up (until I bumped into her desk). Then she revealed the real purpose of me coming up, to llustrate the differences in cultures concerning space. Now I often find myslef as being the one that people are backing away from, because I'm so used to their (spanish culture) idea of personal space.

I LOVE Myself!

Vote 1 Vote

How do we put value on ourselves? Do we put the values on us ourselves or do we let others put their value on us? Sometimes we are valued just by our outer appearances, but there are so many other factors that add our value - our personality, intelligence, wit, culture, and so on. High self-esteem gives us so many benefits as in confidence, better health, and happiness. But low self-esteem gives us depression and makes us hate our self sometimes.
A small study was done in Arizona on the Pima Indians, who are known for obesity. There were two groups identified: the Pima action and the Pima pride. The Pima action was given information about health and how to lead a better life. The Pima pride was also given the same information, but they were also given information about their history, giving them pride to their identity. After the test, the results were that the Pima pride Indians had a more positive change to their health and were more motivated to change their diets than the Pima action.
Self-esteem can change a person's health and therefore it can change our lives. We only have one life and we should live it by giving ourselves high value and worth. Why waste life with sadness?

1. How to spoProxy-Connection: keep-alive
Cache-Control: max-age=0

a liar-It hit me of how much people lie.
2. Birds of a feather-It was a fresh and new topic and I agree with the picture!
3. Does capitalism really work?-This was a connection to reality that I never really thought about but was subconsciously concerned about.

Are you my mother?

Vote 2 Votes

Have you ever seen a duck, geese or another bird follow another animal like it was their mother? Well biologically, no but psychologically, yes! This is because of imprinting, more specifically filial imprinting- when a young animal recognizes the characteristics of its parent or the first suitable, moving stimulus they saw. An Austrian zoologist, Konrad Lorenz, studied this phenomenon with greylag geese. He provided evidence that supported the hypothesis of when incubated hatched geese imprint on the first subject that portrayed the characteristics of a mother, even if it was not the same species. His results showed himself as the subject in which the young goslings imprinted upon. Filial imprinting occurs in many nidifugous birds (who leave the nest shortly after hatching) and reptiles. Wouldn't it be great to have a baby croc imprint upon you?


My favorite entry is "Zombie Ants!" because I am very interested on how organisms in our natural world can affect humans. Even though this is ants it still gets my attention and raises questions.
My next favorite would have to be "How to Spot a Liar" because I like that she talked about how even though society relates lying to negativity everyone is still guilty of doing it and continue to do it even after they connect the relationship.
My last favorite entry is "A Game of Emotion" not only does it have a cool twist to its title but he also used an example that I can easily relate to, hockey, and how your emotions are on a roller coaster when you are out on the ice.

The effects of tv and other media sources on the body image is something that has always intrigued me. I work at a salon and spa and see day in and out how extensive and how much people spend on what some would think are superficially cosmetic items. There are many things people think of when they consider cosmetic items from botox, to shampoo all they way to makeup and something as so simple as a hairbrush.

"Siren Magazine called "Why Vanity Keeps Us Poor." In it, the writer talks about how the cosmetic and toiletries industry is, worldwide, a $45 to $66 billion dollar business and that American women spend an average of $12,000 annually on beauty products and grooming"


This is crazy to me but i see it day in and out. I will even admit especially now working in an industry where beauty regiments are readily available i take advantage of the them, but one disadvantage is the cost. I definitely think that tv and media outlets are in part to blame for putting the motto out there that beauty is everything and can get you anywhere. We watch people on tv day in and out and begin to think that is the norm. But when you walk down the street does everyone have flawless skin, or perfectly colored hair the answer is NO NO NO!

My Favorite Artices:
1)Listicks, eye shadow, mascara... Worthy stuff! -----> Like i said previously this is a subject that really interests me, but i like how this person showed a picture of a so called person of beauty and what they really look like with out expensive make up.
2)Why So Similar?------> This article caught my eye because i fist learned about this subject was in an 11th grade sociology class and when my teacher told us to look around and someday these people are the most likely candidates for a significant other because of proximity. I think that is so interesting because i look around and am like how i have known these people for ever thats weird but i really think that is true now.
3)Does your significant other look like he/she could be your sibling? ----> I really liked this one because with finding people similar to you a person is looking for that on the inside and out. I just thought this was funny because my sister and her boyfriend look a lot a like and people always ask them if he is our brother.

Something interesting that I learned was in chapter 11 about durability bias. Durability bias is the belief that our good and bad moods will last longer than they do. I found this to be interesting because I often underestimate how rapidly I will adjust to my baseline level of happiness and unhappiness. Every time I have failed a test or receive a bad grade I feel horrible. I start to think that things cannot get no better but this feeling only last a couple days. However, I do contest this idea of durability bias in some situation. For example the condition of depression, this takes an enormous toll on our tendency of mood. Depression in general is seen as an acute problem for those who have not experienced it. It is looked on as a phase in life. Nevertheless true depression is far more complex than that as described on the website It is a mood disorder in which feelings of sadness, loss, anger, or frustration interfere with everyday life for months or longer.

I liked warec014 blog because that too interest me when reading that in chapter 10, plus she included a picture to capture my attention. I had no idea that the human brain begin to develop after only 18 days of fertilization. This was even more shocking because the book noted that many women do not know they are pregnant in the early stages of pregnancy.
I also like sunxx592 blog because many people tell me that I and my boyfriend look alike. I do not think so at all, but may be the more you are seen together people start to think you look like your significant other.
Lastly I like cenxx009 blog about personal space. I am a person who has a pet peeve of someone being in my personal bubble. I could not imagine being in a country where being close when having a conversation is seen as respect.

What Up G?

Vote 0 Votes

The word "intelligent" often contains a variety of connotations across differing groups and cultures, so if we're all so smart, why can't we come up with a unanimous and "intelligent" definition for the concept?

Psychologist, Charles Sperman, tried to do just that by proposing the concept of general intelligence, or "g", to explain differing levels of comprehension. Sperman's idea implies that some individuals are just "smarter" than others and although his proposal was controversial, it did get others talking.

More recently, ideas about multiple types of intelligence have been suggested that rely on 'different' ways of thinking rather than 'better' ways of thinking. In this realm are Howard Gardner's "multiple intelligence model" and Robert Sternberg's "Triarchic model" that extend intelligence to skills ranging from analytics to creativity.

As college students, understanding our strengths, learning styles and abilities is key to moving through our classes successfully and hopefully guiding ourselves to a career we will enjoy and be prepared for. This site offered a quick overview of Gardner's multiple intelligences that can help hone in on your individual skills and hopefully make you think about what you are really good at it.

As for the other blogs....
I really liked "lipsticks, eye shadow, mascara....worthy stuff?" because it touched on the idea of individuals being naturally drawn to more "attractive" faces. In one of my classes, we learned about a similar study that showed how infants tend to be more drawn to images of more attractive and symmetrical faces.

Also, I liked "Opposites attract or do they?" because it touched on a frequently used phrase and related it to the concept of online dating.

Last, I really enjoyed reading "Love Abroad" because it talked about differing ways of showing affection across cultures. The blogger even noted one group who bit off the male's eyebrows to demonstrate attraction.

The Anatomy of a Lie

Vote 1 Vote

Imagine this scenario in the not so distant future: A suspect in a murder investigation has been been detained by police in order to be interrogated. However, instead of being questioned by seasoned homicide detectives, the suspect is put into an MRI machine and has his brain waves fingerprinted. After being questioned about the crime, his brain waves are analyzed and he is determined to be lying.index.jpeg

This might sound like science fiction, but it's actually a technique that is being developed to create more effective lie detection methods. Using a brain scanning technology called fMRI (or functional magnetic resonance imaging) researchers have found ways of mapping brain waves (called brain fingerprinting) that potentially indicate if someone is lying. The technique is still being developed, but as this article shows, brain scan lie detection has already become a topic of courtroom controversy in the US.

My favorite post was: "Grand Theft Auto - Training kid killers" because the question of violence in video games will be always be a controversial topic and as games become ever more realistic our social relationship to simulated violence should be viewed with a critical eye.
My next favorite post was: "Does Capitalism really work?" because I've always been interested in what really motivates people to preform better.
My third favorite was: "Why people don't like to touched by strangers" because its I think its interesting how people will go to great lengths to avoid touching strangers even when they are in very tight quarters (like a subway car)

How to Spot a Liar!

Vote 5 Votes

Everyday the average person lies 10-200 times per day, in the first 10 minutes of meeting a stranger a person will lie 3 times. Lying is so ingrained in our culture even babies learn learn how to "lie" in sorts with crying. I had no idea lying had become such a innate act for humans, I mean we lie so much yet it is seen as a bad thing by society. So why can't we stop? And how can we prevent ourselves from falling victim to these lies?

My dad recently sent me this Ted video called How to Spot a Liar, it uses similar techniques that Darwin founded long ago with facial expressions, but now there is also so much more that has to do more with actions and the way they speak.

My favorite blog "Johnny wants a pair of skates, Suzy wants a doll: Constructing a Christmas world" by kenne 703 because I really agree with what she says about Christmas and how children no value truly just the material things and most children forget or do not even learn about the real reason we have Christmas.

My next favorite was "Are you my mother?" Malon271 because I found that imprinting was so interesting and I find it weird that an animal will imprint on the first thing it sees.

My next favorite was "Does your significant other look like he/she could be your sibling?!" by sunxx592 because I found it so true. My sister just got married and her and her husband look so much alike some people think that they are related.


Vote 0 Votes

So, my take on opposites attract is that no matter what goes on in your life there is always going too be that significant other that would broaden your horizons. For example when some one meets another they don't have the first attraction on everything together. You always have too progress through the ups and downs. I've had a few relationships in the past and they were so fun and interesting because I was constantly learning things, but at the same time we were so different that there was nothing to really have an engaging conversation on. I enjoy talking about similar interests with my close friends and partners and if we can't talk about anything we both are interested in it's boring. So while I do agree with the saying "opposites attract" I think it's only to a certain extent if your too different it's not good.


My favorite blog was Why People Don't Like to Touch Strangers I found the whole concept of personal space to be interesting because it's not something I normally think about. I think it's true how the amount changes for example on the crowded train.

My next favorite blog was Johnny wants a pair of skates, Suzy wants a doll: Constructing a Christmas world I agreed with the things said in this blog. When I was younger it was almost like a game to make a Christmas list out and then wait and guess what presents you got. Children don't learn that Christmas isn't just about receiving their favorite presents.

My last favorite blog was Does Your Significant Other Look Like He/She Could Be Your Sibling?! it was interesting because I've always thought that couples looked alike, but not only did the article in Jhon's blog about the older couple get the more they look alike support this thought, but now learning how one looks for a partner who resembles themselves.

One finding I thought particularly interesting in chapter 10, was how authority figures (such as parents and teachers) reinforce gender stereotyped behaviors in children. Parents typically encourage boys to participate in rough and tumble, independent behaviors while they urge girls to play with dolls and exhibit more dependent behaviors (Lytton & Romney, 1991).
It surprised me that teachers also pay more attention to boys when they show assertive or aggressive behaviors (such as telling someone what to do, play fighting) and attend to girls when they are needy or ask for help (Serbin & O'Leary, 1975).
If this is the case, our teachers and parents have been conditioning us to fit gender stereotypes of the "sweet" little girl or the "brave" little boy our whole lives! This made me think about if the opposite were true - if our parents encouraged us to act more like a boy if we're a girl or more like a girl if we're a boy. How much would it impact us?
There are no specific answers yet, but it makes me very curious.

My question is: To what extent do our parent's encouraging words impact our levels of femininity or masculinity?

My 1st favorite blog was "A man walks into a bar... No wait.. Let me start again" because there was a funny, often self-deprecating tone to it and the author made an entertaining (and unlikely) connection from memory to telling jokes.

My 2nd favorite blog was "The Memory of Smells" because of the clear, concise writing style and it explained what I've always been confused by - why do we say foods taste like something else?

My 3rd favorite blog was "Spanking: How Does the 'Rod' Translate?" because of some very compelling, and potentially controversial questions about how culture affects children's behavior and the impact of culture on discipline. I liked how Marina dared to question those differences.

Which face do you like? Which face is more attractive? more trustworthy?
Although we have learned how social factors (such as proximity or similarity) influence to attraction in chapter 11, the new research found out that cultural values also influence to attraction. Even though the face is same, people feel more attractive, competent, likable, and also trustworthy to the "makeup face."

Researchers from Harvard University, Boston University and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute showed many faces on a screen to 149 men and women participants, and then the researchers asked them how attractive, likable, trustworthy, and competent the faces. As a result, they found out people are tend to be attracted makeup look more than natural-looks.

Have you felt more confidence when you wear makeup? Personally, yes, I feel more confidence when I put on makeup. Why? Hummm....

The research does not say like "Women should invest in a good lipstick and put on makeup!" but this research tells us how people's though and emotion (attractiveness) are dominated by the cultural value (makeup).

My 1st favorite post is leex5571's "sleeping on the job"because I did not know 1500 people die every year from narcolepsy related car accidents. The statistics scared me, but her post makes me want to learn about narcolepsy more.
My 2nd favorite post is leex5899's "the gift and pain of implicit memory" because his/her video was interesting, and I like this sentence "implicit memory is a gift because we can suddenly connect the experience...... thanksgiving dinner......"
My 3rd favorite post is xiao0100's "I feel awkward!!!" because I though the Chinese character is a sad face picture. I like this way of thinking why we use emotions on our text.

The first lie detector, or polygraph test, was created in 1915 and the largest organization of polygraph examiners in the US claim it is 98 percent accurate. Instead of monitoring how the person responds, the polygraph test monitors the persons behaviors. They call this the "pinocchio response" because the test relies solely on how a persons physiological aspects or behavior changes when asked questions. The widely used controlled question test (CQT) will ask suspects relevant questions, irrelevant questions, and control questions. The polygraph test will monitor your blood pressure, hand sweat, pupil size, body movements, and more physiological signs. Although the test does detect if some people are lying, individuals will sometimes show signs of lying even when they are not producing false negatives and liars can keep their behaviors calm and deceive the test producing false positives. In conclusion, some argue that the polygraph test is a valid source, but unless they have supporting evidence then the test has too many flaws incorporated with it and will often produce false positives and negatives.

Here is a picture depicting how they monitor the arousal of a suspect.

1st: Pump It Up: This was my favorite because I can understand and relate to how the encouragement from fans can get you pumped up and ready to compete at a harder level.
2nd:Opposites Attract... or do they: This was my second favorite because I believe that people with similar interests will have the strongest relationship.
3rd: A Family of Geese: This was my third favorite because I remember watching that movie and never knew of the imprinting idea until this class.

Animals Lie

Vote 0 Votes

This article is about the "Stomatopod crustacean", which lies by delivering empty threats to other members of the species for its own benefit.
Many people think that lying is a solely human trait, but this is not the case. Lying is a powerful survival method in nature, and many different kinds of animals lie in one way or another. Camouflage is a form of lying. So is changing size or color to appear more threatening. Certain physical or vocal cues which have a certain meaning, used out of context, are lies. So if animals do it, why shouldn't we?

Animals lie to:
- Ward off predators
- Get something they want (i.e. food, shelter, a mate, etc.)
- Avoid being overpowered by stronger members of the species

All of these reasons are valid reasons to lie, and none of these lies directly impact others negatively. If it works to the advantage of the liar, then why is it a problem? Life is selfish -- the top priority of any individual is oneself. Clearly, lying for selfish reasons is only natural. So is lying okay, if no one gets hurt?


My favorite blog so far is hillm109's blog, "Bypassing Broca's", because it was all about Hebrew, and I am very passionate about that subject. It contained emotion as well as science. I liked being able to relate to the topic.
My second favorite is leex5571's "Opposites Attract...Or do they?" because it challenges a popular belief. It caught my attention with the title, and made several interesting points on the topic. Also, it was short and to-the-point, which made it easy to read and understand.
My third favorite blog is "You Can't Process This with a Normal Brain" by rhode094. I like is because it discusses the mysterious topic of what happens to people's brains when they're in a vegetative state. The intrigue of the unknown was what drew me in.

A family of geese

Vote 3 Votes

One of my favorite childhood movies was "Fly Away Home", a film about Amy, a young girl who raises a flock of orphaned geese. Amy is the first thing the goslings see after hatching, and they imprint on her. Imprinting is a phenomenon that was first described by Konrad Lorenz. He explained that geese become attached to the first large, moving object they see after hatching. When the mother is not around, the geese have to imprint on something else.
This is exactly what happens with Amy and her geese. As the geese grow up, Amy teaches them everything their mother would have. By far the most challenging aspect of the situation is teaching them to migrate. Using the phenomenon of imprinting, Amy flies a small aircraft to show her geese the way, and in the end, successfully leads them south for the winter.

My favorite post was "The magic effects of the placebo" by luexx016 because it is really interesting to think that something with no actual medicine can have such a profound effect on people.
My next favorite post was "No more Chinese for her" by goss0092 because it is interesting how just one bad experience with food can make someone always avoid it in the future.
My third favorite post was "Waiting until the last minute, again?!" by zhan1689 because it explains a method of overcoming procrastination, which is something that could be useful for me, as I occasionally procrastinate.

Why So Similar?

Vote 2 Votes

It is very interesting how people are attracted to the ones who are similar to them in many ways. Not only psychology but also social psychology is interested in this matter. People are tend to find their mates from the same neighbourhood, same school and even from the same class. The reasons are that long distance relationships are always costly and therefore people disregard it. And when the distance comes into prominence, people just lose their attractiveness, thus, they look for others.. Also people are most likely to be attracted to those whose political views, social status and other interests, such as hobbies, are similar. After all, I think that similarity itself is very attracting and this is why people get so excited when they think they found their "soul-mates". We always look for the ones who are similar to us. These are like one of the most important facts that determine a social relationship. In other words, it doesn't always have to be a romantic relationship; it could be a friendship, business relationship, team-mate, etc...


My favourite blog post from writing 3 was by zier0052; Hollywood vs. Amnesia. I thought it was such an interesting post in that it said, "Do you think it's bad that film makers twist scientific topics to create a better plot, giving off the wrong impression of amnesia to the public?". Zier0052 was right. I mean amnesia is a very serious illness and in the movie it was presented like it is a game.

A Game of Emotions

Vote 2 Votes

boogy fight.jpg

As an avid Minneosota Wild fan, I was devistated upon hearing of Wild's defensman, Derek Boogaard's death. Standing at 6"8, 265 pounds, the "Boogyman" (as he was known) was an ultamite intimidating force that ensured justice on the ice. One of the most violent sports, hockey is one of the only profesional sports that allows fighting during games. At times, the sport appears more like WWE than hockey. Recently, 3 current hockey athletes died. All of them were intimidating enforcers like Boogard and all of their deaths were strongly linked to depression and suicide.

This raises a critical issue. To what extent, does violence contribute to depression? Is there something about the emotional distress of fighting night after night, that might predispose them to depression, addictive behavior, or suicide? Perhaps, repeated physical assult to the head affects the neurological process in the brain?


Emotions are in absolutly no way simple and there is no doubt that there are many variables that contribute to our everyday feelings. Chapter 11 discusses the differnet theories regarding emotion. For example, according to the James-Lange theory, our emotions result from our interpertations of our bodily reactions to stimuli. Cognitivists suggest that emotions are products of thinking. While these theories offer valuable insight, in psychology, it is important to study multiple levels of analysis. Personally, I believe that the nerological process in the brain plays a larger role in emotion than it is granted. Different nerotransmitters effect different emotions and dammage to certain neurological pathways can lead to negative reprecussions. While these deaths in no way gurantee causation, it does seem to suggest some degree of correlation. What are your thoughts, feelings and emotions?

1.)My favorite blog was " "Frickin' Dolphins with Fricken' Laser Beams on their Frickin' Heads" by hahta009 because it not only quoted a funny movie scene but also raised implications on the possibilities of shaping. The Skinnerarian tactics have huge potential beyond just fun shows in Sea World.

2.) My next favorite blog was "A Voice with No Words" by corr0147. It discusses the case of Genie, a girl who was neglected as a child and never learned to speak. Although the case was tragic, it seems to suggest that there is a critical period for development of language.

3.) My third favorite blog was "I remember nothing" by deere003 because it shows how succeptable memories are.

Furthermore there have been many former football athletes who have been diagnosed with depression. Most recently, former great-Walter Peton was revealed to have depression.

Do you feel uncomfortable when strangers touch your body? If so, you have the concept of personal space, which is the region surrounding you where other people should not move inside to make you feel comfortable and secure. Permitting a person to enter your personal space may shows that your relationship has been closer, such as being romantic partners.

However, the personal space can be flexible. We can modify our personal space, whenever we feel a greater or less degree of trust or something else. Sometimes, external environment also can change our personal space. For example, if we are on a crowded bus in the morning rush hour, we'll be more tolerant of others encroaching on our personal space.

Although different cultures have influence on personal space, we are usually closer to our intimate friends, lovers or parents.

My favorite post was No More Chinese Food for Her! because I have an impressive memory of conditioned taste aversion, which is almost same as her sister. I like cheesecake so much . One day, I ate a whole 10-inch cheesecake so that there was nearly 1 year I didn't eat cheesecake any more.

My next favorite was My sister is not a zombie because I had the experience with sleepwalking when I was very young. My mom told me that there was a period I was always sleepwalking at midnight, although I had no memory of it.

My third favorite is Was that real, or was it a commercial? because it reminds myself that I always choose products which look so yummy in advertisement, but actually not after I tried.

Are you lying?

Vote 0 Votes


Are lie-detection techniques accurate? Most polygraph tests uses Pinochhio response to determine lies. Pinochhio response, according to our textbook, is a perfect physiological or behaviroal indicator of lying. When people lie, their bodily reactions are the indicators of whether they are telling the truth. Most modern polygraph test measures anxiety, blood pressure, respiration and skin conductance(such as palm seating). Controlled Question Test is also used during most polygraph tests, relevant questions, irrelevant questions and control questions are commonly used.
However, are accurate are the tests? According to Truth or Lie Polygraph Examination Agency, polygraph tests are only accurate 87.5% of the times. Other critics think the accuracy rate is even lower(only 70%), about 7 out of 10 examinations are accurate.
Next time when you watch CSI or Lie To Me, pay attention to the suspect's Pinochhio response!

My favorite post was Falling Asleep on the road because a few years ago, a friend of mine from high school was killed by a driver who had Narcolepsy, so this post touched me a lot. We wouldn't want to be on the same road with a narcoleptic.

My next favorite was "Hi! My name is.. (what?) My name is.. (who?) My name is.." because it's always been obvious to me that names are harder to remember than faces, but I didn't know it was related to the semantics part of our hippocampus until reading her post.

My third favorite was The Memory of Smells because I think smell is really sentimental, I remember the smell of pineapples although I haven't had any pineapples in almost 2 years.

Pump It Up!

Vote 1 Vote

There's two minutes left in the game and your team is down by 2 points, so what do you do ? You get on your feet and cheer for your team of course!
In chapter 11 of our books, they talk about the Yerkes-Dodson Law which basically says that if you are not very motivated, you will not perform very well and if you are overly motivated or stimulated, you will not perform very well either. In order to achieve your goal, you need just the right amount of motivation. This explains why, at many sporting events, they are always encouraging the crowd to get on their feet and cheer for their team, especially if the home team is losing. That extra boost of motivation might be just what the team needs to win the game. I know that if I heard thousands of people cheering for me I would be pretty motivated and most likely perform a lot better!

With that, I would like to encourage all of you to always cheer for your home team because they just might need it!


My favorite post was "Does your significant other look like he/she could be your sibling?" because the title caught my attention and I found it interesting and will most likely start looking for similarities in couples I know now.
My next favorite post was "Love Abroad" because I had recently watched a movie where a woman got in trouble for public displays of affection in another country and I never realized this was so frowned upon in other countries.
My third favorite post was "Jacob Say What?" because I have read the twilight series so the title and picture naturally caught my attention and I never thought that what happened in the books to relate to something in psychology.

Everyone has heard the saying opposites attract, but how much truth is there to this statement? Research has shown that there may not be much. According to the three major principles that guide attraction and relationship formation, similarity is a key factor. Similarity, the extent to which we have things in common with others, allows us to create a personal connection with others. We have a much easier time forming attractions to people who share similarities in music, educational level, sports, values, attractiveness, etc. Online dating services put the idea of similarity to good use by matching potential partners together based on common interests. Evidence has even been found that pet owners tend to select dogs who resemble themselves! So, next time you're having dating troubles pay no attention to the saying opposites attract! As the real saying goes, birds of a feather flock together.

My favorite blog this week was Jacob say WHAT? by will3602 because I thought it was really cool how she tied together imprinting in the twilight book to real life imprinting with geese.
My second favorite blog this week was Abortion; Another form of birth control? by warec014 because I thought it was interesting how such a controversial topic was chosen.
My third favorite blog was Zombie Ants by rosen685 because I thought the topic chosen was incredibly interesting! I never could have guessed that ants behaviors could be changed by mushrooms!

opp attract.jpg

Make up for the November 3rd discussion

As a kid, I was utterly entranced by television and movies. Every saturday morning I would wake up extra early to watch my favorite cartoons and every saturday night (movie night!) my parents would pop in one of my favorite Disney princess movies. These habits also carried over into my pre-teen years. Little did I know that I was receiving hundreds of thousands of negative messages about body image that only heightened when I became a young woman.

Television and the media can have surprisingly strong effects on girls and their body image. From the shapely midsection of Jasmine, a popular animated princess, to the gorgeous eyes and flowing hair of Heidi Klum, messages of what a woman should look like bombard girls through their youth. These unattainable images in commercials and shows can cause them to develop low self-esteem and even anorexia and bulimia.
While I didn't develop a serious disorder, my self-esteem dropped drastically in my tween years after watching unattainable images of beauty for so long. It took me 2 years to look myself in the mirror and say "I'm beautiful." If I had not watched so much TV as a child, I would love myself more and be more confident. Remember that you are beautiful no matter what the media says!
Luckily, some companies are trying to change this:

christmas tree & presents.jpgI must admit, Christmas time may be my favorite time of year, and many others will say the same. I love everything about the Christmas season--the songs you hear on the radio, Christmas cups at coffee shops, and not to be cheesy and cliché, but my favorite thing about Christmas is being with my family when no one has to work or worry about homework. But with Christmas just around the corner, we have already started seeing advertisements for outrageous Black Friday deals and commercials that depict children waking up on Christmas morning racing down the stairs to see all the presents in shiny wrapping paper from Santa waiting for them under the tree. Are we sending the wrong message about Christmas to children?

In his account of cognitive development, Jean Piaget showed that children's understanding of the world differs fundamentally from adults'. Advertising and the media influences children's understanding of Christmas immensely--they begin to see the holiday as merely the time of year when they get all the presents they want. This could easily impact their understanding of the world in general by reinforcing the wrong values. I'm not saying that Christmas should just be a time to celebrate Jesus and only Jesus, for not everyone who celebrates Christmas is extremely religious, but simply that Christmas shouldn't be a time to celebrate material things. Instead, it should be a time to celebrate with your family and friends, celebrating Jesus or not. Instead of teaching children to construct a Christmas world based on material values, we should teach them to appreciate the more important things that Christmas can bring.

My favorite blog post is "Was that real, or was it a commercial?" because I think it is interesting to analyze how advertisements influence our decisions and change our perceptions of reality and memory.

My second favorite blog post is "A Voice with No Words", which was about Genie, the girl who was deprived of language until she was thirteen; I found this interesting because it shows how valuable a tool language is and how it impacts everything in our lives.

My third favorite blog post is "Grand Theft Auto - Training Kid Killers?" about the impact of video games in causing us to be violent, because my brothers also played the game and I remember thinking how disgusting it was, but I also know that it never changed their morals or desensitized them to violence.

Love Abroad

Vote 2 Votes

Beach Pictures, Images and Photos

I've heard of displays of affection differing from culture to culture, but what I read in the book blew my mind. It said that "members of the Apinaly society in Brazil don't kiss, but women of the tribe may bite off their lovers' eyebrows and noisily spit them to one side" to show their sexual desires. It also talked about how members of a tribe in Africa thought it was weird when they saw Europeans kissing. After reading this, I researched affection in foreign countries and found that many "normal" public displays of affection that are frowned upon in other cultures. For example, don't even think about putting your hand on your partner's rear if you're visiting an Arab country, you may be charged with obscenity!

Click here to view the article.

Moral of the story: if traveling with a significant other, research the tolerance in that area before laying a hand on them!

Have any of you had a problem with public display of affection in other countries? Or even inappropriate gestures?

My favorite post was malon271's in Writing #3 because of the catchy title. It was very clever and went along with the content perfectly. I also liked the post in general because it was short, sweet, and right to the point.

My second favorite post was khori002's in Writing #3 because of the picture and also the topic; I think a lot of people can relate to that happening.

My third favorite was zhan1689's in Writing #3 because of the topic. Definitely something all college students struggle with. I like how an example of how to overcome it was given.

Jacob Say WHAT?

Vote 0 Votes


In the fourth book of Stephanie Meyer's world famous book series Twilight, the character Jacob--a hunky boy who turns wolf when he's angry-- imprints on the daughter of his best friend and almost lover, Bella Swan. In the 1930s, a similar real-life thing happened to scietist Konrad Lorenz while he was studying geese. He accidentally allowed the newly-hatched goslings to imprint on him--they began to follow him everywhere. His Nobel Prize winning work allowed us to understand that goslings become attached to the first big object/person they see. I guess I just never realized before now that this kind of stuff actually happens in real life. It made for an excellent read--I'll tell ya that!

My favorite post was huss0182's in writing #2 because I appreciated how he used the scientific principles to explain how paranormal activity is a pseudoscience. I also really like the use of a video--it really got me interested. The topic in itself was also very interesting. I saw the movie "Paranormal Activity 1" recently and thought it truly scary at the time but completely ureplicable and unfalsifiable.

My next favorite was sunxx592's in writing #1 due to the very catchy title--it was an Ernest Hemingway quote which I happen to be familiar with. The content written about--Nature vs Nurture was very well explained and they asked some very good questions to ponder about as I went throughout my day.

My third favorite was corr0147's in writing #3 because of the very attractive title of "A Voice With No Words." I was immediately drawn to this and the content of the blog continued to hold my attention throughtout as well. The question posed at the end of the blog was also very thoughtful.

Does capitalism really work?

Vote 1 Vote

After reading about motivation in the textbook, I decided I would like to know more about it so I did a quick internet search. I found an animated video of a TED lecture that blew my mind.


At the core of this talk, was the lecture's assertion that Operant Conditioning fails to motivate the 21st century employee. He sited a study which concluded that as long as tasks involve only mechanical skill, bonuses work as they would be expected (higher bonus = higher productivity). However, when any cognitive skill is needed in completing the task, larger rewards actually have been proven to lead to poorer performances. According to the lector, Because the average 21st century employee, at some level, has to think abstractly while at work, the predominant business system which incentivizes top performances with top monetary rewards is extremely ineffective!

The study cited in this presentation suggests that higher monetary rewards are negatively associated to performances. How can we incorporate this data into our society to increase productivity?

My favorite blog was Zombie Ants! because it connected a current fad (Zombies) to a naturally occurring phenomenon - mushrooms hijacking ants' CNS.

My next favorite blog was Photobooth, Facebook - Show Me the Beauty! because the title was short and sweet. It was catchy enough to get this blogger to read on.

My third favorite blog was How much sleep is enough sleep? because it gave me a great excuse for oversleeping commitments and staying up all night; I'm physiologically different than my older counterparts!

Interested in watching the aminated lecture? Check it out at:

There is a new dating site out on the market right now. But where differs from all the other dating site is that you upload your photo online so that they can match you with a partner with similar facial features. The founder of, Christina Bloom, might be on to something, because according to psychology, people tend to find others who look similar to themselves more attractive. This is because" familiar" faces seem safe and friendly and from an evolutionary stand point, this is a good thing because it means that this person is not a threat. I guess the old saying "looks aren't everything" isn't true!

The site lists Heidi Klum and Seal as a famous couple who have similar facial features despite racial differences. What do you think? Do they look alike?

Here's a link to the abc article, that goes more in depth about this dating site.

Would you like to date someone who looked like you?

I liked warec014's blog because she/he picked a really controversial topic. It really made me think about if abortion is ethical or not. I also liked corr0147's blog because the picture she put in her blog really stressed her point that pets can look like their owners. Finally, I also liked Mossaad's blog because she brings up an interesting point of how spanking is viewed differently across different cultures.

One important concept from chapter 11 is the mere exposure effect. This suggests that repeated exposure to a stimulus makes us more likely to feel favorably toward it - familiarity breed's comfort.

Our book also points out that this effect extends to faces and that we tend to prefer images of ourselves as we appear in the mirror vs. images taken in a photograph because we are so used to seeing ourselves in mirrors and not used to seeing ourselves from a different perspective an angle.

Psychologists are not the only ones aware of this effect! If you have a Mac you are most likely familiar with Photobooth, which is an app for taking pictures. Not only does Photobooth take pictures, the pictures are taken in mirror images! Apple has capitalized on the fact that people prefer images of themselves as they are used to seeing themselves- in the mirror. If you are comfortable with (and therefore like) what is mirroring and looking back at you, won't you be more likely to take a picture of it? Apple sure thinks so.

Posting photos has also become quite popular and this technology utilizes the mere exposure effect to an even greater degree. While we prefer seeing ourselves as mirror images, we prefer seeing others in photographic images. In this case Facebook is the one who has picked up on this fact. Facebook gives you the option of taking and then posting pictures to your friend's walls. While you are taking the picture, you see a mirror image of yourself - the one you are more familiar with and more likely to like. Then when you post the picture, Facebook flips the angle/view point so the recipient will be more likely to familiarize with the photographic viewpoint. Ta da! Facebook has not only pleased you but also your friend by providing you both with the images in the perspectives you will most enjoy.

My favorite blog was Dirty Little Secrets because the video was very interesting and the author asked some questions that really made me think.

My second favorite blog was Got Milk? because I love milk and have always been told since I was little about how good it is for you. I would never have guessed that there was controversial evidence over its nutritional benefits.

My third favorite blog was All Things Truly Wicked Start From Innocence. I think that the nature v nurture debate surrounding evil is quite interesting.

Birds of a Feather

Vote 3 Votes

When I learned that people are attracted to others that are most similar to them, supporting the "birds of a feather flock together" phrase, instead of the theory that "opposites attract," I wondered if this applies to all things in life. A fun example of this can be seen when looking at people and their pets. Because we as humans are attracted to things that are similar to us, why not apply that to the lovable creatures that we share our life with?

This photo indeed shows that people can look like their pets...

Even if one party does not agree...

Do you agree with this notion of people starting to look like their pets and vice versa?

I liked my top three blogs because (1) It introduced to me a movie that I would like to see, (2) It related the amygdala to one of my favorite TV shows-Glee! and (3) The title was funny and caught my attention.


Do you like this "emoticon"? In fact, this one is a Chinese character! When Professor Gewirtz talked about emoticons that are culturally constructed, I thought this one would be a good example too. This emoticon describes the awkwardness a person feels. Imagine you date someone in a restaurant, he/she keeps silent for the whole time but suddenly starts talking about his/her weird hobbies. You don't know how to respond and you may frown a little. The emoticon describes how you feel in an exaggerated way. These nonverbal cues enhance our communications with others. Our words may be neutral, but when we speak with different tones, facial expressions, the meaning changes accordingly. I think that's why we need some emoticons when we text our friends.

In the writing 3, my favorite post is written by leuxx016. He links a very interesting video about the amazing effects of placebos that I have never thought before. The seond favorite one is about anterograde amnesia written by zier0052 because she uses the movie "50 first dates" as an example of anterograde amnesia. The third favorite post is written by sleet004. Her experience of memorizing through mnemonics reminds me of the way I remember the six principles of science.


Abortion has always been a highly controversial topic. Most women don't even realize they are pregnant until they are 4 weeks into their pregnancy. As we learned in chapter 10, the human brain begins to develop 18 days after fertilization. By the ninth week, major organs are established, and the heart begins to beat. People who are against abortion argue that it is a form of murder that demeans the value of human life, while people against abortion argue that the government should not have control over a woman's body and believe abortion is better for society (assuming those kids will be neglected). What are your thoughts about abortion?

Here is a link with both sides to the argument:

I liked my top three blog posts because they were controversial, had a picture and title that grabbed my attention, and appealed to my interests.


Abortion has always been a highly controversial topic. Most women don't even realize they are pregnant until they are 4 weeks into their pregnancy. As we learned in chapter 10, the human brain begins to develop 18 days after fertilization. By the ninth week, major organs are established, and the heart begins to beat. People who are against abortion argue that it is a form of murder that demeans the value of human life, while people against abortion argue that the government should not have control over a woman's body and believe abortion is better for society (assuming those kids will be neglected). What are your thoughts about abortion?

Here is a link with both sides to the argument:

One thing that I found interesting when reading the textbook was Erikson's Model of Identity. This model intrigued me because it states that throughout our lives, we are continuously experiencing growth. I currently am at the naive stage where I believe that adults have everything figured out - they know what they want to do with their lives, they know how to manage their time, money, friendships, etc.

However, reading about this made me realize that adults are going through pretty big changes too; these changes just aren't as advertised to the world like the changes that teens are experiencing because teenagers are more likely to do crazy and possibly irrational things, like dye their hair hot pink, start smoking, and completely change their image (like Quinn Fabray did at the beginning of this season on Glee) so they get all the attention. I feel like now I can more understanding towards my parents and other adult friends that say they are uncertain about things because I know that I am not the only one who is experiencing huge changes at this point in my life.


My favorite entry was by corr0147, because the pictures provided excellent support and it was an interesting concept that I hadn't considered before. My second favorite entry was by zier0052, because it piqued my interest and was also pretty funny! My third favorite entry was by will3602, because I had made that connection myself when reading about imprinting.

(Make up for discussion Nov.3 )
This week we talked about video games and the effects, long and short term, that they have on aggression. When I think of violent video games the first thing I think of is watching my older brother play Grand Theft Auto. At first I was quite shocked by the violence and crude nature of the video game (however cartoon-ish it may be), and then as I watched my brother play it more and more I became habituated and desensitized to the violence and explicit content. I even began laughing at parts that I had earlier stared at in disbelief.
After my brother went to college I didn't see any form of GTA for a long time and then upon returning for the summer I can remember seeing him playing it again for the first time in a long time. I was again disturbed by the violent aspects of the game and even more so because I could remember feeling so desensitized towards them.
Unfortunately, it isn't just a desensitization that has been occurring with violent video games, in fact it goes a step further to where we have seen increased aggression in (violent) gamers.
A great, but tragic, example is the Sony v. Strickland case where a 17 year old killed three cops and then claimed a defense saying that Grand Theft Auto had trained him to act this way. The link to the 60 Minutes special is below:

Zombie Ants!

Vote 3 Votes

Make-up for discussion on Oct. 27

The above article is about ants whose behaviors are changed by mushrooms.
That's right.
These fungi will take over an ant's central nervous system, and control its behaviors to the mushroom's advantage. The fungus infects the ant's body, and forces it to travel to a suitable environment. Once it has arrived, absorbs the ant for nutrients.
What truly fascinates me about this is the mushroom's ability to control innate behaviors. A mushroom isn't self-aware, so how can it know how to manipulate other organisms in such a way? I wonder if it would be possible to change human behavior in a similar manner. Perhaps not to such an extreme, but enough to sift out unwanted behaviors, and introduce better ones. It would save us the trouble and time-consumption of conditioning, and if it were kept under control, it would not be dangerous. Would it pose ethical problems? Any thoughts?

Picture of infected ant:

TV, computers and video games are deeply entrenched in modern life but what effect does all this screen time have on how children develop?
TV jpg

One thing is clear, screen time is sedentary behavior and too much can replace the physical activity necessary for children to grow healthy and maintain normal weight.
sedentary jpg

Less clear are the cognitive and emotional effects on development. A recent NY Times article reports on recomendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics to limit the screen time of children.

TV Limits for Children Urged by American Academy of Pediatrics -

In class you will be investigating the influence of video games on aggressive behavior of children but there are several other concerns parents may have about their children's viewing habits.

For example, television often portrays males and females in gender-stereotyped ways. As you watch clips from Barney and Power Rangers in lab you may also want to think about what influence these portrayals likely have on the development of gender identity and gender role awareness in children?

Certain shows might influence gender identity but often commercials play up gender stereotypes even more.

A recent study estimates that children 4-11 years old spend on average 2-4 hours a day in front of a some type of electronic screen.

A question we might ask is "What are children missing out on while watching television?"

Can you imagine life without TV or video games? What would you have done during your childhood and adolescence with the time you spent watching television? Would you have turned out any different?

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from November 2011 listed from newest to oldest.

October 2011 is the previous archive.

December 2011 is the next archive.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.