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Showing posts with the label Psychological science

Believing in Magic: The Psychology of Superstition

Believing in Magic:  The Psychology of Superstition Updated Edition     By   Stuart A. Vyse Reviewed by    Geoffrey W. Sutton Are you superstitious? In Believing in Magic: The Psychology of Superstition    Stuart Vyse provides a highly readable, informative, and even entertaining look at superstition. Vyse covers a wide variety of superstitions used by children and adults in many cultures but focuses on the charms, beliefs, and rituals prevalent in the United States.   We also learn from experiments and observations how superstitious behavior develops in children and continues into adult life. Animal studies reveal uncanny resemblances to the superstitious behavior of humans. We also learn by imitating others thus; social influence is a factor associated with superstitious beliefs and rituals. Those who play professional sports, gamblers in casinos, and college students taking exams, serve as prime examples of people who engage in superstitious behavior. Is superstitious beha

Quiet – The Power of Introverts - A Book Review

  Quiet The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking   By   Susan Cain Reviewed by   Geoffrey W. Sutton As the subtitle explains, Quiet is about introverts in an extroverted culture. As a psychologist, I appreciate Cain’s exploration of personality psychology, which included interviews with experts and an awareness of the differences between her broader view of introversion and extroversion compared to the less encompassing features that comprise the personality construct in psychology. As a person favoring many features linked to introversion, I can identify with her stories and affirm the effort required to adapt to the demands of an extrovert-driven culture. In fact, American culture was a bit of a shock to us when we first came to the United States from England where the norm seems to be a polite reserve punctuated with copious amounts of saying “sorry” when we perceive we may have offended someone. What I did not realize as a child is that entire c

Noise: A Flaw in Human Judgment

  Noise: A Flaw in Human Judgment By:    Daniel Kahneman, Olivier Sibony, and Cass R. Sunstein Reviewed by   Geoffrey W. Sutton   We are constantly exposed to opinions. Some of those opinions are judgments. And some of those judgments affect our opportunities to work, obtain healthcare, receive fair treatment by government entities, and earn fair evaluations in school. Some people are paid to make informed judgments. Unfortunately, some judgments are noisy—they vary. Noise is about the differences in judgments that affect our lives. When the authors provide examples of variation in judgments, they are writing about variability in a statistical sense. As a retired professor who taught research and statistics to undergraduate and graduate students, I’m not sure the authors were entirely clear—at least not clear enough for readers who are either new to the concept or haven’t drawn on their statistics knowledge for some years. In any event, I think the book deserves a look be

The Seven Sins of Memory- Book Review & Resources

  The Seven Sins   of Memory By Daniel L. Schacter        Reviewed by   Geoffrey W. Sutton Schacter’s Seven Sins of Memory is like a fine seven course meal. Each course serves up an interesting collection of research that’s easy to read by the general public and pleasantly presented, yet rich with enough details to appeal to scholars and practitioners. I left feeling satisfied. Every mental health clinician and all who work with people should read about the seven sins of memory and come back to it when they wonder about memory complaints or detect discrepancies in recall. Students will find it helpful too as Schacter weaves psychological science into meaningful stories—a good example of how to write about psychological science for nonpsychology majors. I must say that I found the notion of “sins” strange—is this a psychology of religion book? I suppose it could be. Afterall, religious scholar Craig Keener included a discussion of memory in his book about the Gospe

Think Again- Learning to Rethink - A review

  Think Again The Power of Knowing   What You Don’t Know By   Adam Grant Reviewed by   Geoffrey W. Sutton   Think Again works. Throughout the book, I found myself rethinking some of my assumptions and learning new applications of familiar and new psychological findings. In many ways, Adam Grant challenges us to rethink what we are doing at work, school, and even in relationships. It’s a book that deserves a place in any syllabus challenging students to think and rethink their assumptions and to develop confident humility. But Think Again also belongs in discussion groups in the workplace. On a technical note, Grant divides the book into four parts followed by an Epilogue, and a more or less set of summary statements presented as Actions for Impact. The chapters are introduced with a poignant story. As the theme of a chapter unfolds, we encounter more stories and illustrations that help us appreciate the author’s point. You’ll find it’s like taking a course from a

Creating Surveys-Second Edition

  CREATING SURVEYS   Second Edition How to Create & Administer Surveys, Evaluate Workshops & Seminars, Interpret & Present Results Click to Download Free Sample Available on AMAZON GOOGLE e-Books Reviews “This resource provides practitioners and students a systematic, easy-to-read overview of what surveys are and how to use them. Even seasoned researchers could benefit from reviewing this book and keeping it handy for reference, but undergraduate and master’s students should find it particularly useful for grasping basic research constructs and designing simple survey projects. Not only does the book explain important principles, but it also provides many clear, concrete examples and links to additional resources that the reader will find helpful.” —Joe D. Wilmoth, Ph.D., Emeritus Professor of Human Development and Family Science, Mississippi State University   “Many researchers find themselves in contexts where they have access to groups of people whose values, opin