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Volume 21, Issue1January, 2008

More from this Issue

APS Welcomes Rob Kail

This month, Rob Kail, Purdue University, officially begins his term as Editor of Psychological Science, APS’s flagship journal. Although Rob has already been editing behind the scenes for months, the January 2008 issue marks the first with his name on the masthead of the journal. The start of Kail’s editorship More

Understanding Media Psychology

When I first enrolled in a media psychology program, I had a limited concept of the field. I had stumbled across the distributed learning program online, and the combination of media and psychology fascinated me. My undergraduate degree is in journalism and mass communications, but my family is involved in More

Psychology’s “Big Ideas” in 2007

As the new year gets underway, take a look back on the research that you started, finished, or trashed in ‘07. If you aren’t inspired, then pick up an issue of The New York Times Magazine’s “7th Annual Year in Ideas.” The magazine grouped some of the most “curious, inspired More

State of the Caucus

“You see things; and you say ‘Why?’ But I dream things that never were; and I say ‘Why not?’” – George Bernard Shaw The APS Student Caucus (APSSC) members make a habit out of asking “Why not?” and then finding ways to turn their dreams into reality. These dreams are More

Twelve Tips for Editors, and One Suggestion

In previous issues, I have written columns featuring tips for authors and tips for reviewers. Do readers of the Observer really need tips for editors, too? After all, we deal with only a few of them, right? Yes and no. Although any one author deals with relatively few editors in More

Exercising Judgement: The Psychology of Fitness

It’s only been a few weeks since you made that New Year’s resolution to exercise more, but already you’re finding reasons to skip days — maybe even weeks. You know all the benefits of a healthy lifestyle: In addition to the weight loss, which would obviously be nice, exercise has More

Moving Beyond the Cheshire Cat: Research in Oral Health Behavior

In Lewis Carroll’s classic story Alice in Wonderland, the Cheshire Cat appears and disappears at will, often showing up as a disembodied, grinning mouth full of teeth. This prompts Alice to say, “…a grin without a cat! It’s the most curious thing I ever saw in my life!” One might More

Bloom and Grow: My View of Psychological Research in China

Thirty years ago in China, there were only a few people called psychologists, and no college students had the opportunity to obtain a degree in psychology because no Chinese universities had psychology departments at that time. Today, however, there are more than 180 psychology departments and teaching units in Chinese More

A History of APS’s Publications

We’re so used to the Observer and APS’s journals as mainstays in the field that it’s easy to forget that they haven’t always been around. In this month’s column, we look back at the founding of each and see that, even after two decades (give or take), they remain true More

APS Fellows Win Grawemeyer Awards

Two APS Fellows, Albert Bandera and Philip Tetlock, have been awarded 2008 University of Louisville Grawemeyer Awards. Each year, the Grawemeyer Foundation awards $200,000 each to recipients for works in music composition, ideas improving world order, psychology, education, and religion. Bandura received the 2008 psychology award and Tetlock received the More

The Power in Willpower

Until recently, psychologists used to think of “willpower” as a metaphor, part of folk psychology having no relation to what actually happens in the head. The brain, seat of our decisions, wasn’t a muscle, after all. Self-control wasn’t “powered”, it was a cognitive thing, more like a computer than a More

No End in Sight for Budget Blues

The long slump in government financial support for research continues into the New Year. Get used to it. Money for science rates scant attention with Congress deadlocked, military spending taking billions per month, the President wielding his veto authority, and political energies consumed by the marathon election campaign. Bipartisanship is More

On the Newsstand

Go Ahead, Rationalize. Monkeys Do It, Too The New York Times November 6, 2007 “For half a century, social psychologists have been trying to figure out the human gift for rationalizing irrational behavior. Why did we evolve with brains that salute our shrewdness for buying the neon yellow car with More

Enhancing Learning and Exam Preparation

Exams often are anxiety provoking; the first exam of a course even more so, as students do not know exactly how the professor tests. For many students, an exam review session is the magic balm that can alleviate exam woes and stress. Many courses favor breadth over depth, and students More

Metrics of Science

Assessments of science are important for many different reasons. For individuals early in their careers, metrics of scientific work can provide valuable feedback about where they stand and the progress they have made. For faculty seeking to hire another member of their department, such metrics can simplify the task of More