Popular Science articles about Psychology & Sociology

Researchers find mass killings, school shootings are contagious

Mass killings and school shootings in the U.S. appear to be contagious, according to a team of scientists from Arizona State University and Northeastern Illinois University.

Report: Careers outside of academia are richly rewarding for Ph.D. physicists

This image shows typical PhD physicists salaries by career type, 2011, 10 ­to 15
years after getting their degree. The data shows middle 50 percent of respondents.When asked to picture someone with a PhD in physics, most people probably envision an academic in a lab -- and not, say, a CEO or a financial analyst. In...

Patients with recurrent depression have smaller hippocampi

People with depression were shown to have reduced hippocampus volume compared to non-depressed people.The brains of people with recurrent depression have a significantly smaller hippocampus - the part of the brain most associated with forming new memories - than healthy individuals, a new...

Stress in low-income families can affect children's learning

Children living in low-income households who endure family instability and emotionally distant caregivers are at risk of having impaired cognitive abilities according to new research from the University of Rochester.Children living in low-income households who endure family instability and emotionally distant caregivers are at risk of having impaired cognitive abilities according to new research from the University of Rochester.

Not-so-guilty pleasure: Viewing cat videos boosts energy and positive emotions

Bloomington, Ind.'s own Lil Bub is one of the more popular felines on the Internet.If you get a warm, fuzzy feeling after watching cute cat videos online, the effect may be more profound than you think.

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Starfish have a surprising talent for squeezing foreign bodies out through the skin

A starfish pushes a foreign body out through its arm tip.Starfish have strange talents. Two biology students from University of Southern Denmark have revealed that starfish are able to squeeze foreign bodies along the length of their body cavities and...

People living in disadvantaged cities are at greater risk of suicide

The city where an individual lives can influence the risk of dying by suicide, according to a new study from sociologists at Rice University and the University of Colorado at...

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Study: Juvenile incarceration yields less schooling, more crime

Teenagers who are incarcerated tend to have substantially worse outcomes later in life than those who avoid serving time for similar offenses, according to a distinctive new study co-authored by...

People more likely to cheat as they become more economically dependent on their spouses

Both men and women are more likely to cheat on their spouses the more economically dependent they are on them, according to a new study.

Stanford researchers tie unexpected brain structures to creativity -- and to stifling it

Investigators at Stanford University have found a surprising link between creative problem-solving and heightened activity in the cerebellum, a structure located in the back of the brain and more typically...

Study: 44 percent of parents struggle to limit cell phone use at playgrounds

Most north Seattle caregivers spent a small fraction of their playground time on a cell phone, and interactions were most often brief.A new University of Washington study finds that cell phone use at playgrounds is a significant source of parental guilt, as well as a powerful distraction when children try to...

Brain forming new associations.
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Sleep deprivation could reduce intrusive memories of traumatic scenes

A good night's sleep has long been recommended to those who have experienced a traumatic event. But an Oxford University-led study provides preliminary experimental work suggesting it could actually be...

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When times are tough, parents favor daughters over sons

In tough economic times, parents financially favor daughters over sons, according to researchers at the Carlson School of Management and Rutgers Business School. Their study, forthcoming in the Journal of...

Recalling positive memories reverses stress-induced depression

In a remarkable demonstration of the curative power of memory, published in Nature, scientists have established that artificial reactivation of memories stored during a positive experience can suppress the effects...

Do insect societies share brain power?

As social behavior evolved, the brain regions for central cognitive processing in social insect species may have gotten smaller -- the exact opposite of the pattern that has been documented for several kinds of vertebrate animals including mammals, birds and fish. This finding comes from a new comparative study of social and solitary wasp species, including wasps in the genus <i>Mischocyttarus</i> closely related to these, <i>Mischocyttarus mexicanum</i>. "This small nest of wasps was built under a sheltered eve at the La Selva Biological Station in Costa Rica," said the study's lead author, Sean O'Donnell, Ph.D., of Drexel University. "These are independent-founding wasps: relatively simple societies, never reaching large colony sizes. These wasps are thought to represent a fairly early stage in social evolution, possibly like species at the transition from solitary to social living."The society you live in can shape the complexity of your brain--and it does so differently for social insects than for humans and other vertebrate animals.

Linking climate change to natural disasters influences charitable aid

When natural disasters strike - droughts, typhoons, floods - the media, charities, and science organizations appeal to the public both for aid to the victims and to communicate the causes...

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UT study compares active video gaming to unstructured outdoor play

The increasing use of video games is often blamed for children's lack of interest in physical activity, but a study by the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, recently published in the...

Cooking up cognition

These days, cooking dinner requires no more thought than turning a knob on a stovetop, but for early humans the notion that - simply by applying heat or fire -...

Weight-loss surgery puts spark back into relationships

Bariatric surgery does not only benefit the health of patients who undergo this weight loss procedure. It also leads to greater intimacy between them and their life partners, and adds...

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UH study finds news may influence racial bias

This is Temple Northup.A recent University of Houston (UH) study suggests that long-term exposure to news may negatively influence racial bias towards social groups.

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NYU researchers ID part of the brain for processing speech

A team of New York University neuroscientists has identified a part of the brain exclusively devoted to processing speech. Its findings point to the superior temporal sulcus (STS), located in...

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