Psychological Science

The Thoughtful Animal

Category archives for Psychological Science

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Painstaking scientific research has identified seven dating tips that could boost your chances on Valentine’s Day … including shouting in his right ear and scaring him witless. Whether or not you have a Valentine this year, head on over to check out to my latest piece in The Guardian: Valentine’s Day dating tips from lovestruck…

What’s the best way for a lonely guy to get a date? If you’re a Splendid Fairy-Wren (Malurus splendens, native to Australia), your best bet might be to frighten the object of your affection. You’ve learned all about the birds and the bees; now it’s time to learn from them. Lots of research has shown…

In honor of Science Online, which begins on Thursday night, I will be writing about lemurs this week. Why lemurs? Because on Friday morning, as a part of Science Online, I will be taking a tour of the Duke Lemur Center. It is common among animals – especially primates – to orient their gaze preferentially…

Eric M. Johnson and I spent about 45 minutes discussing “evolutionary psychology beyond sex” last night, which you can see today on Bloggingheads “Science Saturday.” Or just watch it here:

“Two chimps had been shut out of their shelter by mistake during a cold rain storm. They were standing dejeted, water streaming down their shivering bodies, when Professor K√∂hler chanced to pass.” Upon opening the door for the two chimps, Dr. James Leuba recounts, “instead of scampering in without more ado, as many a child…

Ah, Thanksgiving. A day full of turkey, cranberries, pie, and, of course, SCIENCE! After you fill your stomach with gravy and stuffing, stuff your mind with all this great Thanksgiving science. What’s any good Thanksgiving feast without some turkey? Emily Anthes of Wonderland starts the meal off with an offering of thanks for the turkey’s…

Scientists thought they had a pretty good handle on the social interactions of bottlenose dophins (Tursiops). They’ve used the term fission-fusion dynamics to describe dolphin (and non-human primate) society and so far it has served researchers well. Fission-fusion societies among dolphins are characterized by two levels of social hierarchy: groups of two or three related…

This week marked the release of Brian Switek’s (blog, twitter) first book, Written in Stone. I got my hands on a review copy a few weeks ago, and I have nothing but good things to say about it. (Disclaimer: I was provided with a free review copy of the book, without any expectation that I’d…

Despite the fact that my research lies at the intersection between cognitive, comparative, and developmental psychology, I am also quite interested in the evolution of our understanding of psychopathology. The ultimate goal of the study of psychopathology is to ground such disorders in brain and body. But our understanding of some pathologies are simply not…

Welcome to the mental illness mini-carnival! Mental illness, or psychopathology, is a field riddled with controversy and it can be sometimes confusing to wade through all the uncertainty and conflicting data and opinions. In an effort to help make sense of some of it, your faithful psychology and neuroscience bloggers are here to help. “Illness…