Friday, 26 July 2013

Link feast

In case you missed them  - 10 of the best psychology and neuroscience links from the past week:

1. The pre-registration debate has kicked off. Sophie Scott wrote an article this week for Times Higher on why she is opposed to the idea of planned psychology and neuroscience experiments being submitted to journals for approval and registration prior to the collection of data. The case for pre-registration was made by Chris Chambers and Marcus Munafo plus 80 supporters in the Guardian last month. They believe pre-registration will improve psychology and related sciences and deter questionable research practices. It sounds like a good idea but Scott's not the only one with reservations. The debate is likely to roll on - Pete Etchells is keeping track over at his Counterbalanced blog.

2. Many desperate people appear to benefit from ECT, but it seems so primitive. The BBC asks: Why are we still using electric shock treatment? 

3. Why study consciousness? - new TED talk by philosopher John Searle.

4. The link between a faulty body clock and mental illness - fascinating article and lecture by Russell Foster, professor of circadian neuroscience.

5. In a new book, psychologists seek to explain why we're so drawn to super heroes - Comics aficionado Noah Berlatsky is not too impressed.

6. Would you trust a doctor in a T-shirt? (Related - Psychology of what to wear to work).

7. The social sciences have stagnated, according to Nicholas Christakis, who'd like less emphasis on traditional topics and a greater focus on new areas like his - social networks.

8. The "secret" Milgram experiments ("When it suited him, he used his data; when it didn’t suit him, he ignored it.")

9. New book worth a look: "Mezzofanti's Gift: The Search for the World's Most Extraordinary Language Learners" by Michael Erard.

10. TV catch-up: Channel 4 broadcast a programme "Catching a killer: Crocodile tears" about the killers who make public appeals for information about the crimes they themselves committed (now on 4OD). Features forensic psychologist David Canter.

Looking ahead to next week: why not pay a visit to the free Brains: The Mind as Matter exhibition that opens at Manchester's Museum of Science and Industry today. I saw it in London and highly recommend having a look.
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Post compiled by Christian Jarrett (@psych_writer) for the BPS Research Digest.

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