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Volume 7, Issue3May 1994

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.

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  • This is a photo of a piece of paper torn to reveal the phrase "uncover the facts"

    Myths and Misinformation

    How does misinformation spread and how do we combat it? Psychological science sheds light on the mechanisms underlying misinformation and ‘fake news.’

Up Front


  • NIMH Grants to the Behavioral Sciences

    Investigators in several fields that are central to the research mission of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) recently have voiced uncertainty and concern over the immediate prospects for new/competing R0-1 grant support from the Institute. Some queries reflect a degree of confusion about terms used to assess the "fundability" of application; others seek clarification of NIMH priorities with respect to both the balance of our portfolio and the mechanisms used to support research. I appreciate having this opportunity to describe key dynamics underlying our current funding pattern and to ensure that concerns, however understandable, are proportionate to reality. The NIMH research budget experienced unprecedented growth during much of the past decade.

Practice


  • How to Improve Your Teaching With the Course Syllabus

    Did you ever have a student misunderstand an assignment, express surprise that you had considered attendance important, or want an explanation of how you grade after the final exam has been scored and the semester is over? If, like most teachers, you receive a few such remarks every semester, you already appreciate the need for clarity in your communication with students. One of the best ways to clarify such communication is through your course syllabus. As a teacher, you have probably distributed thousands of them and no doubt have written a score or more, yet often the syllabus is given little serious attention. But as Rubin (1985) has pointed out, “We keep forgetting that what we know—about our disciplines, about our goals, about our teaching—is not known (or agreed upon) by everyone.