New Content From Perspectives on Psychological Science

Belief in Unconscious Repressed Memory Persists
Henry Otgaar et al.

Here, Otgaar and colleagues respond to Brewin’s commentary on their 2019 review suggesting that the controversial issue of repressed trauma memories remains alive in clinical, legal, and academic contexts. Brewin (2021) claimed that few if any scholars refer to unconscious repression and that previous research did not assess unconscious repression. Otgaar and colleagues present evidence that some scholars support notions closely related to unconscious repression, including specifically endorsing unconscious repressed memories. They also cite recent research indicating that large percentages of people believe in repressed memories, which can be harmful in clinical, legal, and academic domains.

Invalid Claims About the Validity of Implicit Association Tests by Prisoners of the Implicit Social-Cognition Paradigm
Ulrich Schimmack

In this article, Schimmack responds to the comments on his previous article, in which he reported finding no evidence that the Implicit Association Test (IAT) measures implicit constructs, such as implicit racial bias. He examines the arguments of other researchers and argues that they lack validity and that IAT proponents tend to ignore or misrepresent challenges to the validity of IAT measures of implicit cognitions. Schimmack maintains that the IAT is used without evidence of construct or predictive validity, and he calls for more preregistered validation studies by independent researchers.

From da Vinci’s Flying Machines to a Theory of the Creative Process
C. Dominik Güss, Sarah Ahmed, and Dietrich Dörner

Güss and colleagues use da Vinci’s flying machines to infer nine steps of the creative process: (a) vision and curiosity as motivations to discover; (b) social recognition as motivation; (c) asking questions; (d) analogical thinking as a starting point; (e) trial and error to develop new ideas and products; (f) abductive thinking (i.e., introducing new knowledge as an explanation for a phenomenon); (g) incubation and forgetting; (h) overinclusive thinking, latent inhibition, and illumination (i.e., considering seemingly unrelated material, blocking irrelevant stimuli, and creating insights); and (i) schema elaboration (i.e. testing and working out details).

Comparisons Inform Me Who I Am: A General Comparative-Processing Model of Self-Perception
Nexhmedin Morina

Morina proposes a general comparative model of self-perception that may help to illuminate comparison processes that influence how individuals create self-perceptions. The model consists of a basic comparison process involving the individual’s prior representation of the target dimension, the construal level of the comparison standard, and the comparison outcome representing the posterior dimension of the target dimension. Contextual and personal factors influence the comparison process, and one’s motives and controllability shape desirable or undesirable emotional, cognitive, and behavioral responses to the comparison.

Promises and Perils of Experimentation: The Mutual-Internal-Validity Problem
Hause Lin, Kaitlyn M. Werner, and Michael Inzlicht

Lin and colleagues suggest that when developing theories, researchers must be aware of the mutual-internal-validity problem: Experiments and theories become wedded to each other and divorced from the real world because experiments are designed according to theories that describe experimental phenomena. This problem can result in a lack of explanatory power beyond laboratory settings. Lin and colleagues propose that researchers use theoretical triangulation to address this problem by bridging multiple theories, methods, and data sources (e.g., bridging social and cognitive psychology with neuroscience and using cognitive-neuroscience theories and methods to constrain and inform social-cognition theories).

Insight Into the Hispanic Paradox: The Language Hypothesis
María Magdalena Llabre

Hispanic people are less likely to die from heart disease than their non-Hispanic White counterparts, despite having higher risk factors. Cultural characteristics that affect how stress is appraised and accumulated might explain this paradox. Here, Llabre focuses on the features of the Spanish language that may promote emotional expression, expand emotional concepts, and influence the appraisal of stress. For example, the Spanish emotion lexicon might allow Hispanic people to have a wider range of emotion schemas, and the Spanish use of labels specifying the permanence of emotions as well as the use of the subjunctive mood might allow minimizing the impact of negative mood and experiences on stress.

Communicating What We Know and What Isn’t So: Science Communication in Psychology
Neil A. Lewis, Jr. and Jonathan Wai

How are psychologists supposed to communicate psychological science to the broader public if they are unsure about what is known or what they have to communicate? The credibility revolution in psychological science highlights metascientific questions about what psychologists know. Lewis and Wai analyze insights from the fields of social influence and science communication and persuasion to discuss strategies for navigating science communication in psychology amid the credibility revolution. They advise researchers to make clear what they know, how they know and don’t know, and what they still need to learn.

Moral Reasoning Enables Developmental and Societal Change
Melanie Killen and Audun Dahl

Killen and Dahl review research on the development of moral reasoning and link it to how human societies change over time. From childhood to adulthood, reasoning and judgments about resource distribution and other moral issues become increasingly sophisticated; individuals not only evaluate acts as right or wrong but also attempt to rectify inequalities, protest unfair norms, and resist stereotypic expectations about others. The development of moral reasoning can enable individuals to identify and challenge injustices. Thus, moral reasoning can lead to societal change when individuals call for those changes on the basis of moral concerns over fairness, justice, and welfare.


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