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152002Volume 15, Issue6July/August 2002

About the Observer

The Observer is the online magazine of the Association for Psychological Science and covers matters affecting the research, academic, and applied disciplines of psychology. The magazine reports on issues of interest to psychologist scientists worldwide and disseminates information about the activities, policies, and scientific values of APS.

APS members receive a monthly Observer newsletter that covers the latest content in the magazine. Members also may access the online archive of Observer articles going back to 1988.

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    Disaster Response and Recovery

    Disasters like Hurricane Florence and Typhoon Mangkhut draw massive media coverage, trauma interventions, and financial donations to victims. But psychological research shows the efforts don’t always yield the intended benefits.

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  • ABCs of IRBs

    Human Subject Protection: IRBs Made (The Big) Easy! Hosted by: Jeffery Cohen, Office of Human Research Protections and Barbara Spellman, University of Virginia Jeffery Cohen, federal Office for Human Research Protections, addresses the issues of risk and harm and informed consent in behavioral science research involving human participants. Some issues are so important and so pressing that APS members could not even wait for the convention to begin before they began discussing them.

  • Not-So-Cosmic Gender Differences

    The Auditory System as a Window onto Human Prenatal Development and Sexual Differentiation Presenter: Dennis McFadden, The University of Texas at Austin Introduced by: Elaine Hull, State University of New York - Buffal Pop culture likens the differences between the sexes to planetary origins other than Earth. It might explain volumes if men are from Mars, but differences between men and women are often more subtle. Dennis McFadden of the University of Texas at Austin studies one of these subtle, sometimes quiet, sometimes booming, differences between the sexes: Gender differences in the human auditory system.

  • Are We Ashamed by Anti-Arab Prejudice?

    Do Americans Feel Ashamed for Anti-Arab Prejudice Since September 11th? Presenter: Toni Schmader, The University of Arizona Co-Authors: Brian Lickel, University of Southern California; Michael Johns and Marchelle Barquissau, The University of Arizona The researchers examined whether Americans experienced vicarious shame (feelings of shame for acts committed by others) for acts of anti-Arab prejudice committed by other Americans after the September 11 attacks, and also wanted to test what role group identification as an American might play in this process. Having already developed a model of vicarious shame, this model begins with the essentiality of association.

  • Detecting Deception

    The Physiological Detection of Deception: Where are We and What Lies Ahead? Presenters: William Iacono, University of Minnesota The Scientific Basis of Polygraph Testing John Allen, University of Arizona The Promise and Limitations of ERP's for Assessing Deception J. Pete Rosenfeld, Northwestern University Countermeasures to P300 Amplitude-Based Guilty Knowledge Tests: Other Approaches Tyler Lorig, University of Chicago Rethinking the Physiological Detection of Deception Discussant: Stephen Fienberg, Carnegie Mellon Universi Each year, people in police stations and even in their own offices are questioned about their involvement in criminal activity and workplace misconduct.

  • Defensiveness: A Menace to High Self-Esteem

    Understanding Negative Consequences of High Self-Esteem: The Role of Defensiveness Presenter: Kathleen M. J. Hoffman, University of California, Los Angeles Co-Author: Traci Mann, University of California, Los Angeles We live in a society where high self-esteem is synonymous with - and believed to be essential to - well being. And why not? There is a wide range of evidence that high self-esteem has many positive effects for individuals. Research has linked high self-esteem to higher expectation to succeed; to higher task performance; and to being more independent and self-directed, and less prone to mood swings and depression.

  • What Can I Do With An Undergraduate Degree?

    Psi Chi Workshop I'm Finally Out of School! What Do I Do Now?: Career Options in Psychology Chair: Elizabeth Yost Hammer, Loyola University Participants: Peter J. Giodano, Belmont University Elliott D. Hammer, Xavier University Jesse E. Purdy, Southwestern University When you tell people that you were a psychology major, how many have said "Oh, you'll never get anywhere with just that" or "Oh, so you want to go into counseling then, huh?" After awhile do you start to get discouraged, because you don't know how to respond to those kinds of comments? Psi Chi, the national honorary society for undergraduate psychology majors, may have some answers for you.