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Volume 23, Issue4April, 2010

More from this Issue

Alphonse Chapanis: Pioneer in the Application of Psychology to Engineering Design

Alphonse Chapanis (1917-2002) combined his interests in basic psychological research in vision and perception with applications to engineering design to become a distinguished leader of human factors engineering (referred to as ergonomics in many industrial engineering departments and in other countries around the world). While still in graduate school in More

Taxing Unhealthy Foods May Encourage Healthier Eating

States are beginning to impose “sin taxes” on fat and sugar to dissuade people from eating junk food. Other groups favor subsidies over punitive taxes as a way to encourage people to eat fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. The two strategies have never been tested head to head. So psychological More

Aha! So That’s How We Solve Problems

Important discoveries often involve a moment of insight — the “Aha” experience — and yet the brain mechanisms responsible for these insights have remained largely unknown due to the sporadic, unpredictable, and short-lived nature of such experiences. However, in a groundbreaking study, researchers have identified specific brain areas at work More

Congratulations to the 2010 Janet Taylor Spence Award Recipients

The APS Board of Directors is pleased to announce the 2010 recipients of the APS Janet Taylor Spence Award for Transformative Early Career Contributions, in recognition of the significant impact their work is having in the field of psychological science. The award recognizes the creativity and innovative work of promising More

Color My Numbers: New Study Suggests Learning a Key Part of Synaesthesia

For as many as one in 20 people, everyday experiences can elicit extraordinary associated sensations. The condition is known as synaesthesia and the most common form involves “seeing” colors when reading words and numbers. Many previous studies have shown that the brains of people who experience this phenomenon are different More

Silent No More: The Case for Changing Our Pronunciation

At its December 2009 meeting, the APS Board of Directors was unanimous in support of a proposal by the APS Pronunciation Committee to change how we say the words psychology and psychological (and psychologist) to include the initial “p” sound. In keeping with APS bylaws, such a change in pronunciation More

Psychology Research with Undergraduates: An Interview With Debra Zellner

The Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR) is a membership organization with a mission “to support and promote high-quality undergraduate student-faculty collaborative research and scholarship.” This organization, founded in 1978, promotes undergraduate research by providing faculty development opportunities; sharing information on the importance of undergraduate research with state and federal elected More

Understanding Confidence Intervals (CIs) and Effect Size Estimation

The newly released sixth edition of the APA Publication Manual states that “estimates of appropriate effect sizes and confidence intervals are the minimum expectations” (APA, 2009, p. 33, italics added).  An increasing number of journals echo this sentiment. For example, an editorial in Neuropsychology stated that “effect sizes should always More

Changes in Psychological Science: Perspectives from Textbook Authors

Introductory textbook authors live on the leading edge of psychological science, examining the entire discipline from its history to the modern frontiers, distilling the most important aspects into a format digestible by first-year college students, and then repeating the process for the next edition. This work gives them rare perspective More

The Science of Hollywood Blockbusters

There is something about the rhythm and texture of early cinema that has a very different “feel” than modern films. But it’s hard to put one’s finger on just what that something is. New research may help explain this elusive quality. Cognitive psychologist (and film buff) James Cutting of Cornell More

Can We Make Healthful Foods Taste Good, or Even

Losing weight and eating healthier are national obsessions. Good psychological science helps us understand why the foods that are the healthiest are often not those we like the best. We understand that our food preferences are acquired by mechanisms that evolved to solve short-term nutritional problems. We are hard-wired to More

APS Member Immordino-Yang Receives Cozzarelli Prize

APS Member Mary Helen Immordino-Yang, University of Southern California, has received the 2009 Cozzarelli Prize from the Editorial Board of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). The Cozzarelli Prize is awarded to articles reflecting excellence and originality in the scientific disciplines represented in the National Academy of More