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Volume 25, Issue4April, 2012

Fragrant Flashbacks

Memory and smell are intertwined; it’s through memory that we learn to remember smells, and disorders that take away memory also take away the ability to distinguish scents. Some of this learning starts even before we are born, when fetuses learn about their mother’s preferences through the amniotic fluid. Flavor More

More from this Issue

Fragrant Flashbacks

Memory and smell are intertwined; it’s through memory that we learn to remember smells, and disorders that take away memory also take away the ability to distinguish scents. Some of this learning starts even before we are born, when fetuses learn about their mother’s preferences through the amniotic fluid. Flavor More

Everything Is Cultural

Here’s a puzzler for you — what does the acronym IUPsyS stand for? No points for getting the “Psy” part (and here’s a hint: IU is not Indiana University). Give up? IUPsyS is the International Union of Psychological Science. It was founded in 1951 and currently has membership representing 70 More

Catching Science

“People ask me what I do in winter when there’s no baseball. I tell you what I do. I stare out the window and wait for spring.” -Rogers Hornsby Home plate was round, something like a dinner plate, when baseball was born in the 19th century, but it was difficult More

Sitting Across From Carl Jung

  Digging into the history of psychological science, the Observer has retrieved classic interviews with historical figures in psychology for an ongoing series Psychology (Yesterday and) Today. Each interview is introduced by a contemporary psychological scientist, and the full text of the interview is available on the Observer website. We More

Publish or Perish? Grade Yourself and Persist

Upon receiving an article relevant to my research, one ego-fueled reaction I have is to flip immediately to the references. Did they cite me? I gave up having friends and a social life for this: a citation might at least let me feel like my research is having some impact More

Rivalry Without Conflict

Take a gander at this cube. It will probably look weird because your visual system can’t decide how to perceive it. This persistent ambiguity is called visual rivalry, and in the case of the Necker Cube, it results from spatial conflict, or when two objects strike the same place in More

April Fool’s! A Reading List All About Humor

Why did the chicken cross the road? And why is that joke never funny? Psychological science has the answers. Peter McGraw, who directs the Humor Research Lab at the University of Colorado, Boulder, offers this reading list to those who want a deeper understanding of the psychological science behind humor. More

Creating Student Interest

Psychology instructors often encounter their students years later, and the bravest among us may ask them what they remember from our courses. We hope they will remember the facts that we heavily emphasized and stressed as important to our discipline. More often they recall, usually with some pleasure, the time More

Allowing Your Creativity to Flourish

“Creativity lies at the heart of the scientific process … true progress requires an act of discovery.” -Langley & Jones, 1988 Today’s educational institutions are arguably not providing an atmosphere that fosters creativity. We are currently in the midst of a trend in which the criteria for academic success seem More

Enliven Students’ Assignments With Wikipedia

According to Wikipedia.org, the online encyclopedia has over 26 million pages that cover topics from Britney Spears to the Pythagorean theorem. Students, laypersons and academics alike have turned to Wikipedia for quick answers to everyday questions. Despite the breadth of knowledge on Wikipedia, Jimmy Wales, founder of the website, has More

This Is Your Mind on Music

Whether a song prompts you to remember your first dance, or an annoying tune won’t stop buzzing around in your head, there is no doubt that music has unique effects on memory. APS Fellow Carol Krumhansl, a professor at Cornell University, studies this distinct connection. She took a few moments More

APS Janet Taylor Spence Award for Transformative Early Career Contributions

The APS Board of Directors is pleased to announce the 2012 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

James McKeen Cattell Fund Fellowship 2012-2013 Recipients

We are pleased to announce the recipients of the James McKeen Cattell Fund Fellowships. The Fellowships are awarded yearly to North American university faculty committed to developing scientific research in psychology and its applications to improving human welfare. The award includes financial support that allows recipients to extend their sabbatical More

A Zoo Where the Animals Come First

On the occasion of my 65th birthday, in the City of Atlanta, where I spent 17 years working at a zoo once denigrated as one of America’s worst zoos, I announced my retirement as president and CEO of the Palm Beach Zoo. Now I am able to look back on More

Funding Woes for British Universities

A little over two years ago, the Observer asked me to describe how British Universities were funded. I indicated at the time that change was anticipated, but no one expected such a thorough revision of the funding structure. As a result, the Observer requested an update. It’s important to note More

Psychological Science Around the World: Latin America

Latin American psychological science is a growing field with a promising future despite its young professional and scientific history. Here I will share some of that history and discuss some of the areas in which I believe Latin American psychological science must keep evolving to make our science more global More

Color It Relevant

When searching for a book, the color of the cover matters a lot. Sure, you might know the title, but locating “that book with the red cover and white letters on the shelf” is easier than locating The Betty Crocker Cookbook. Once you find the book and start reading it More

Searching for the Source of Consciousness

Watching a movie, smelling the roses, feeling the warmth of the sun—these are seemingly simple things we experience all thanks to consciousness. Yet where exactly does consciousness come from? The brain—obviously—but for psychological scientist Geraint Rees that answer isn’t good enough. Rees studies consciousness and how it correlates with brain More