Observer Vol. 23, No. 8 October, 2010

Cover Story

Heuristics Revealed

On February 12, 1995, a party of three seasoned backcountry skiers set out for a day on the pristine slopes of Utah’s Wasatch Mountain Range. Steve Carruthers, 37 years old, was the most experienced of the group, though they were all skilled skiers and mountaineers. Carruthers had skied these hills many times and was intimately familiar with the terrain. Their plan was to trek over the divide from Big Cottonwood Canyon to Porter Fork, the next canyon to the north.... More>

Presidential Column

Why We Like What We Like

Paul Bloom’s How Pleasure Works: The New Science of Why We Like What We Like provides a wonderful set of arguments for why we love what we love. In my own work I was struck that children seem to have automatic preferences toward social groups that mimic the adult state (in spite of far less experience) and have been working to understand these preferences and their origins. ... More>


Mischel Honored by Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Mischel_Walter thumb

APS Past President Walter Mischel is the first psychological scientist in 70 years to receive an honorary doctorate from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. The university noted that the degree was awarded “... to acknowledge [Mischel’s] outstanding scientific contributions in the fields of cognitive, social and personality psychology."... More>


Phantom Limbs More Common Than Previously Thought

After the loss of a limb, most patients experience the feeling of a phantom limb — the vivid illusion that the amputated arm or leg is still present. Damage to the nervous system, such as stroke, may cause similar illusions in weakened limbs, whereby an arm or leg may feel as if it is in a completely different position or may even feel as if it is moving when it is not.... More>

Observer Article

Reporting Science: The Story Behind the Story A Q&A with Benedict Carey of The New York Times


Benedict Carey, science writer at The New York Times, recently talked to APS’s Wray Herbert, about his approach to reporting on psychological science.... More>