Ep 207: The Psychology of Vine

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Would you believe there’s a lot of psychology you can fit into a 6 second vine? Well there is. In this video episode I show you a few of there vines I like and which are also good (unintended) demonstrates of a variety of psychological concepts. I think you’ll have fun with this one.
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Ep 202: How To Memorize Freud’s Stages of Psychosexual Development

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Need to memorize Freud’s stages of psychosexual development for a test? Here’s a mnemonic that should do the trick. In this brief video, the founder of psychoanalysis gives you a mnemonic and explains the 5 stages for you. What do orangutans and ogres have to do with Freud’s stages? They’ll help you remember them, that’s what. Find out how in this episode and make sure to check out these other Psych Files episodes for psychology mnemonics: How to Memorize the Parts of the Brain, How to Memorize Erikson’s Eight Stages, and How to Memorize Piaget’s Stages of Cognitive Development. I love mnemonics here on The Psych Files so if you need to memorize anything else let me know!

Ep 199: Depth Perception – How Your Brain Sees What’s Not There

Depth Perception Before & After
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How do you create a sense of depth in a flat image? In this video I’ll show you how to use 5 cues of depth perception to turn a flat image into one that looks like it has depth. I’ll be drawing from terms you would learn about in a chapter from a psychology text on Sensation and Perception. We’ll have a little fun exploring how we can use what your brain expects to see to trick it into seeing what we want it to see.
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Ep: 175 – How to Protect Yourself from the Persuasive Tactics of the Car Salesperson

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In the market for a car? They have seen you coming and are ready to use sophisticated techniques to persuade you to buy. Be prepared. The video above shows you some of the persuasion techniques used to get you to buy the car THEY want you to buy. Avoid these subtle techniques and buy the car YOU want.

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Ep 173: An Interactive Neuron and Map Using ThingLink

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Every once in a while a really cool tool comes along and I like to show everyone the fun I had with it. In this video episode I show how I easily made an interactive image of a neuron and an interactive map containing videos and locations for some of the major studies in psychology. Do you know where, for example, “Bobo doll” study was done? How about the spot where “Marion Keech” received her message from the alien race called the “Clarion” which revealed the inner workings of cognitive dissonance? Find out how to make your own fun and easy interactive image in this episode of The Psych Files.
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Ep 165 (video): Psychological Research Under Fire: What Can We Do About It?

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What’s going on with Psychology? There have been a number of reports about poorly conducted or completely fraudulent research in the field such as this one that appeared in the New York Times. Well, there’s bad research in all fields, but psychology, which has through its history struggled for scientific credibility, is particularly sensitive to this issue and many psychologists have come out with strong recommendations to make sure that our research is of the highest quality.
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Ep 160: How to Spend Your Money and Truly Make Yourself Happy

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Why aren’t rich people happier than those with less money?

We think money will bring happiness, but research in the area of positive psychology has consistently found that having more money does NOT make us happier. Find out how to spend your money the right way so that it really can bring happiness into your life. [Read more…]

Episode 121: Top 10 Psychology Apps for the iPad, iPhone, & iPod

Best Psychology Apps on the iPad/iPhone
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I show you 10 of what I consider to be the best psychology apps in the app store. There are a lot of psychology apps and many are not so good, but in this episode I pick out what I consider to be credible therapy apps, excellent mind mapping tools, relaxation apps, and some of the best 3 dimensional ways to look at the brain.

Here are three apps created, maintained and constantly updated by me – Michael A. Britt, Ph.D.:

Episode 109: Correlation and Causation

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Looking for examples of correlation and causation? You’ve heard it a million times: correlation doesn’t mean causation. Still need help? Well, here’s a humorous look at this topic that I think drives home the point. The Psych Files "Breaking News" explores whether satisfied workers are more productive and whether living together causes divorce. I hope you enjoy this unique video episode on the topic of correlations.
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The Phases of the Moon and Admissions to Mental Hospitals

This meta-analysis, published in 1985 in the journal Psychological Bulletin, found very few statistically significant relationships between the moon and human behavior.

Those studies that do find links, Rotton and Kelly said, are inaccurate, either because they don’t take important factors into account (that are responsible for the “lunacy”) or they mistake chance events as proof of a lunar effect. from, “‘Supermoon’ Lunacy: Does the Moon Make Us Crazy?

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A popular correlation that is wrong is this effect of phases of the moon on mood. Research has shown that there is no relationship. The moon is just too far away to affect our individual moods and there is no data that admissions to mental health facilities increase during the phases of the moon.
Examples of Correlation and Causation
You have to keep your eye out for a subtle, often unseen 3rd factor that could be causing the two things you’re looking at to appear to be related. This may require a little brainstorming on your part. Humans are “hardwired” to see relationships between all sorts of events. We’re often wrong though.

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Episode 105: Smart Birds are More Successful with the Ladies

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A popular piece of animal research indicates that intelligent male Browerbirds appear to have greater "mating success" (researcher lingo for sex). The more sensitive birds may also be more preferred by the opposite sex as well. So much for the jocks. Find out about this fascinating research on animals in this video episode of The Psych Files. bowerbird.jpg

Resources On Animal Intelligence

  • Many thanks to Jason Keagy for his communication regarding this research.
  • Here is a link to Dr. Gerald Borgia‘s website where you can learn more about the activities of his research group (including info on applying to become a research assistant).
  • Thanks to professor Emeritus Stephen Black from Bishop’s University for alerting the Teaching in Psychology discussion list about this neat study on browerbirds
  • More on problem solving animals: If you haven’t seen these crows do some neat problem solving then you’re in for a treat.