Saturday, 9 January 2016

Link feast

Happy new year and welcome to the first Link Feast of 2016 – the weekly post where our editor lists his favourite recent psychology and neuroscience links:

Lumosity to Pay $2 Million to Settle FTC Deceptive Advertising
The creators and marketers of the Lumosity “brain training” program have agreed to settle US Federal Trade Commission charges alleging that they deceived consumers with unfounded claims that Lumosity games can help users perform better at work and in school, and reduce or delay cognitive impairment associated with age and other serious health conditions. [more on brain training]

How Expressing Gratitude Might Change Your Brain
A new study I covered at New York's Science of Us suggests that even just an hour of focusing on gratitude might have long-lasting neurological effects.

Therapy Wars: The Revenge of Freud
Cheap and effective, CBT became the dominant form of therapy, consigning Freud to psychology’s dingy basement, writes The Guardian's Oliver Burkeman. But new studies have cast doubt on its supremacy – and shown dramatic results for psychoanalysis. Is it time to get back on the couch?

Trivers' Pursuit
Renegade scientist Robert Trivers is lauded as one of our greatest thinkers—despite irking academia with blunt talk and bad manners. Profile by Matthew Hutson in Psychology Today.

Debate Rages over Whether Speaking a Second Language Improves Cognition
Some studies show that the purported “bilingual advantage” may be only a myth. Simon Makin reports for Scientific American.

Why Demography Needs Psychologists
At The Psychologist, Gillian Pepper, Lisa McAllister and Rebecca Sear look for psychological answers to questions about fertility and population dynamics.

The Age of Loneliness (video)
In this BBC documentary, people from all walks of life talk honestly about their experiences with loneliness, from a 19-year-old student to a 100-year-old woman [more on loneliness].

The Surprising Perks of Being Easily Embarrassed
Feeling foolish and awkward can be good for you in unexpected ways, boosting your sex appeal, social status and more. David Robson reports for BBC Future [read David's guest posts for the Digest].

New Study Indicates Existence of Eight Conservative Social Psychologists
Jonathan Haidt takes a look at more evidence for the massive under-representation of politically right-leaning individuals in social psychology.

How We Learn Fairness
In the latest of her superb psychology columns at the New Yorker Maria Konnikova covers research on how humans develop a sense of fairness and whether that quality is innate or learned socially.
Post compiled by Christian Jarrett (@psych_writer) for the BPS Research Digest.

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