When the Majority Becomes the Minority

Rapidly expanding racial and ethnic diversity in many industralized countries has sparked a new wave of research on the ways people react to changes in their power and social status.

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Volume 29, Issue4April 2016

About the Observer

Published 6 times per year by the Association for Psychological Science, the Observer educates and informs on matters affecting the research, academic, and applied disciplines of psychology; promotes the scientific values of APS members; reports on issues of international interest to the psychological science community; and provides a vehicle for the dissemination on information about APS.

APS members receive online and print subscriptions to the Observer, including the online archive going back to 1988. The print edition is a member-only benefit.

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Featured


  • APS has many functions, but the promotion of psychological science to government entities is among the most important. To that end, it cultivates close relations with legislative and executive staff, insuring a two-way flow of

  • Cognitive science pioneer Aaron Beck revolutionized the scientific investigation of depression, and his subsequent research has elucidated biological mechanisms that underpin some cognitive features of the disorder. In a new article published in Clinical Psychological

  • Today, parents wanting the best for their children’s intellectual development can turn to a number of “educational” digital apps, a variety of “brain-based” teaching strategies and curricula, and a never-ending stream of videos, toys, games

Up Front


  • Psychology, Open Science, and Government: The Opportunity

    APS has many functions, but the promotion of psychological science to government entities is among the most important. To that end, it cultivates close relations with legislative and executive staff, insuring a two-way flow of information. One close relationship is with the White House’s recently created Social and Behavioral Sciences Team. In this column, David Yokum, a leader of that team, tells APS members what that team has been doing. It is deeply gratifying to see our science being thus applied. -APS President C. Randy Gallistel Note: The views expressed are the author’s and do not necessarily represent the official views of the United States Government or the Government of the District of Columbia. There is a movement afoot to weave psychological science into the fabric of government.

Practice


  • Teaching Current Directions in Psychological Science

    Aimed at integrating cutting-edge psychological science into the classroom, Teaching Current Directions in Psychological Science offers advice and how-to guidance about teaching a particular area of research or topic in psychological science that has been the focus of an article in the APS journal Current Directions in Psychological Science. Current Directions is a peer-reviewed bimonthly journal featuring reviews by leading experts covering all of scientific psychology and its applications and allowing readers to stay apprised of important developments across subfields beyond their areas of expertise. Its articles are written to be accessible to nonexperts, making them ideally suited for use in the classroom. Visit the column for supplementary components, including classroom activities and demonstrations. Visit David G. Myers and C.

First Person


  • Developing Theory With the Grounded-Theory Approach and Thematic Analysis

    Grounded theory is an approach by which theory is extended from qualitative analysis (Charmaz, 1990; Walsh, 2014). It began nearly 5 decades ago (Glaser & Straus, 1967) and has since developed and diversified (Heath & Cowley, 2004). This article outlines a process of thematic analysis directed by the grounded-theory approach and discusses the conditions under which this process is most suitable, using examples from my work with a research team on my master’s thesis about gender-role conceptions among Latinas (Heydarian, 2016). The use of thematic analysis driven by grounded theory is particularly informative for this area of cultural research.

More From This Issue


  • Beck Proposes an Integrative Theory of Depression

    Cognitive science pioneer Aaron Beck revolutionized the scientific investigation of depression, and his subsequent research has elucidated biological mechanisms that underpin some cognitive features of the disorder. In a new article published in Clinical Psychological

  • Books to Check Out: April 2016

    To submit a new book, email apsobserver@psychologicalscience.org. Parenting and Theory of Mind by Scott A. Miller; Oxford University Press, March 21, 2016.

  • Banaji, Ivry, and Pinker Honored With APS William James Fellow Awards

    APS Past President Mahzarin R. Banaji, of Harvard University, along with APS Fellows Richard B. Ivry of the University of California, Berkeley, and Steven A. Pinker of Harvard University, are recipients of the 2016 William James Fellow Award, which recognizes their lifetime of contributions and basic psychological science. Ivry and Pinker will deliver award addresses about their work at the 2016 APS Annual Convention, May 26–29, in Chicago, Illinois, while Banaji will be honored with a symposium at the 2017 APS Annual Convention in Boston, Massachusetts. Banaji is a social psychologist and a professor of social ethics at Harvard’s Department of Psychology.

  • Making Science ‘Edible’

    Today, parents wanting the best for their children’s intellectual development can turn to a number of “educational” digital apps, a variety of “brain-based” teaching strategies and curricula, and a never-ending stream of videos, toys, games

  • Habits and Open Science

    In March 1665, Henry Oldenburg introduced the first publication of the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society to the world. In one remarkable paragraph, Oldenburg declared the purpose of the scientific journal — the second in the world, by only 2 months — to be the “clear and true” communication of scientific work to other curious people around the world. The printing press had revolutionized the spread of information and opinion, and the Royal Society was determined to take advantage of the technology to revolutionize science itself.

  • Ashoka University Builds Science-Centric Psychology Program

    In a small scholarly town just a few miles from New Delhi, a private university is striving to revolutionize psychology’s identity in India. Ashoka University, a fledgling nonprofit institution located in the state of Haryana in northern India, has a mere three people in its psychology department faculty, but the university plans to hire additional instructors over the next few semesters. The program’s fundamental goal is to bring students a scientific perspective on psychology with quantitative methodological training.

  • Estes Fund Supports Training in Mathematical, Computational Modeling

    The William K. and Katherine W. Estes Fund has awarded grants for three programs offering advanced training in mathematical and computational modeling for psychological science. The Estes Fund, which is overseen by APS and the Psychonomic Society, invited proposals for summer school or workshop programs providing training on topics or methods in an area of rapid recent progress that may aim to serve trainees as well as established researchers. The three funded programs are: “Contemporary Neural Network Models: Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, and Cognition” -- James L.

  • National Museum of Psychology on the Way

    The Drs. Nicholas and Dorothy Cummings Center for the History of Psychology at the University of Akron is launching a Kickstarter campaign on April 13th at 3 p.m. to build the first ever National Museum of Psychology. The project is spearheaded by APS Fellow David Baker, the center's Margaret Clark Morgan Executive Director. It will feature an interactive 6,000 square ft. multimedia museum that will exhibit items from both the Cummings Center and the Smithsonian Institution.

  • Kraut Earns 2016 SIGCHI Lifetime Achievement in Research Award

    Herbert A. Simon Professor of Human–Computer Interaction Robert Kraut, an APS Fellow who works at the Human–Computer Interaction Institute (HCII), has been named the recipient of the 2016 SIGCHI Lifetime Achievement in Research Award. Presented annually by the Association for Computing Machinery’s (ACM) Special Interest Group on Computer–Human Interaction, the award recognizes an individual for the very best, most fundamental, and influential research contributions to the human–computer interaction field.

  • Anderson, Dweck Share Atkinson Prize

    APS William James Fellow John R. Anderson (Carnegie Mellon University) and APS James McKeen Cattell Fellow Carol S. Dweck (Stanford University) have won the 2016 Atkinson Prize in Psychological and Cognitive Sciences. They both will receive a cash prize of $100,000 at the annual meeting of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) in Washington, D.C. The Atkinson Prize honors researchers who are making fundamental contributions to the advancement of the psychological and cognitive sciences. The prize was established by APS William James Fellow Richard C. Atkinson, a former director of the National Science Foundation and former president of the University of California system.

  • AAAS Honors Psychological Scientist for Fight Against Torture

    The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) has awarded its 2015 Scientific Freedom and Responsibility Award to psychological scientist Jean Maria Arrigo, who publicly challenged the American Psychological Association’s efforts to allow and conceal the involvement of psychologists in brutal CIA and US military interrogations.