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91996Volume 9, Issue3May-June 1996

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.


  • Using Evolution By Natural Selection as an Integrative Theme in Psychology Courses

    Many who teach the introductory course bemoan the enormous breadth and diversity of our field. How, we ask, can we present psychology in an organized fashion, not as just a hodgepodge of facts and theories? One answer: Use evolution by natural selection as an integrative theme. No other concept can tie all of psychology together as meaningfully. Here are some thoughts about how to use the evolutionary theme in an introductory or more advanced psychology course. Early in the course, explain clearly the concept of evolution by natural selection and its relevance to all of psychology Many students hold misconceptions about evolution that can interfere with their ability to apply the concept as the course progresses. Some conceive of evolutionary "fitness" in terms that go beyond the survival and reproduction of genes.