Personality Pedagogy Newsletter Volume 11, Number 2, October 2015

October 29, 2015

Hello and welcome to the eighty-seventh Personality Pedagogy newsletter highlighting what’s new at http://personalitypedagogy.arcadia.edu. For more about the links below and approximately 3,240  other interesting links related to personality psychology, please visit: http://personalitypedagogy.arcadia.edu.

This month, we bring you some fascinating links from many areas of personality, including how there may be an unintended side effect of deep brain stimulation (used to treat Parkinson’s and other diseases): personality change. Also, the “Science of Relationships” website has a fascinating psychoanalysis of sorts of Elsa and Anna, the sisters from the movie “Frozen”, suggesting that their rocky relationship may have been due to differing attachment styles. Finally, Dan Ariely, who’s psychoeconomic research always makes us think, presents a short video on how to encourage motivation at work. And at this point in the semester, who couldn’t use a little more motivation? If you’re in need of a smile, then check out the monkey selfies found under our Favorite Link Revisited.

As ever, please pass this newsletter on to interested colleagues and invite them to sign up for future issues and to visit the home of Personality Pedagogy: http://personalitypedagogy.arcadia.edu. Remember, you can view the current newsletter, comment on newsletters, re-read what you missed in previous newsletters, or search all newsletters by checking out our blog at https://personalitypedagogy.wordpress.com and you can even receive Personality Pedagogy newsletters via RSS feed as soon as they are posted, by clicking on the “RSS-posts” button on the bottom right.

Cheers,
Marianne

Marianne Miserandino
miserandino “at” arcadia “dot” edu

1. The Personality Pedagogy Monthly Newsletter
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2. Anxious-Avoidant Duos: Walking on Thin Ice in Relationships and Physical Health

Writing for “Science of Relationships”, Jena Lempke describes how Disney’s hit movie “Frozen” depicts how varying preferences for closeness in people with different attachments styles can lead to relationship problems. She describes how the friction between the sisters Elsa (with her avoidant attachment style) and Anna (with her anxious attachment style) was caused by their different attachment styles.

3. Personality Changes After Deep Brain Stimulation

“Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) is a well-known and accepted treatment for neurological and psychiatric diseases. In Parkinson’s disease (PD), DBS clearly improves patients’ symptoms, functionality and quality of life in the long run. Nevertheless, it seems that the electrodes do not have motor-specific functions. DBS influences mental states and personality and in some cases it can even lead to a “new personality”” by increasing impulsivity. From “Brain Blogger”, October 29, 2015.

4. What Pushes Us To Work Hard — Even When We Don’t Have To?

“Behavioral economist Dan Ariely says we work hard not because we have to, but because we want to. He examines the intrinsic values we need to feel motivated to work” in this TED talk from NPR, October 2, 2015. (runs 14 minutes and 52 seconds)

5. Erich Fromm on the Art of Loving and What Is Keeping Us from Its Mastery

“There is hardly any activity, any enterprise, which is started with such tremendous hopes and expectations, and yet, which fails so regularly, as love.” Read about Erich Fromm’s book “The Art of Loving” in this essay by Maria Popova for “BrainPickings”, October 29, 2015.

6. This Personality Trait Predicts Your Tendency to Lie and Cheat

“Researchers at the University of Koblenz-Landau in Germany say that a sixth personality trait,” called honesty-humility, “can predict one type of behavior that none” of the usual five-factors can: dishonesty. From “Business Insider”, June 15, 2015.

7. Tested: Whether You Can Change Your Personality At Will

According to research by Hudson and Fraley (2015) and published in the “Journal of Personality and Social Psychology”, “people may be able to change their self-reported personality traits through volitional means, and represent a first step toward understanding the processes that enable people to do so.” This summary from “PsyBlog”, June 16, 2015.

8. What the Textbooks Don’t Tell You About Psychology’s Most Famous Case Study

“If you turn to many of the leading introductory psychology textbooks (American ones, at least), you’ll find the wrong answer, or a misleading account. Richard Griggs, Emeritus Professor of Psychology at the University of Florida, has just analysed the content of 23 contemporary textbooks (either released or updated within the last couple of years), and he finds most of them contain distortions, omissions and inaccuracies” when it comes to describing the life of Phineas Gage. British Psychological Society “Research Digest”, June 30, 2015.

9. What Holocaust Survivors Can Teach Us About Gratitude

Neuroscientists have gained new insights into how gratitude operates in the brain. Glenn Fox and his colleagues had participants read testimonies of Holocaust survivors while their brains were being scanned. They discovered that areas activated during moments of gratitude include processing reward, fairness, moral cognition, and self-reference. Published in the journal “Frontiers in Psychology”, and summarized here for “PsyBlog”, October 21, 2015.

10. Should We Genetically Screen Four-Year-Olds?

Would true equality in education mean testing children’s genetics at the age of four, so that any learning difficulties revealed can be accommodated right from the start of primary education? Hear Robert Plomin on the role genetics play in children’s success. From “The Guardian”, July 17, 2015. (audio interview; runs 42 minutes and 46 seconds).

11. Only When I Laugh: The Science of Laughter

Laughter overrides our usual vocal and physical control to make sounds we never normally hear in any other context. Read all about this intriguing response in “The Guardian”, July 6, 2015.

12. Favorite Link Revisited: Monkey Selfie

Monkey Hijacks Photographer’s Camera and Shots Self-Portraits While filming macaque monkeys in an Indonesian national park, photographer David Slater lost his camera to one of his subjects. The resulting self-portraits are both comical and all too human and illustrate nicely the question of self-recognition as a uniquely human capacity.

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Personality Pedagogy Newsletter Volume 9, Number 10, June 2015

June 21, 2015

Hello and welcome to the eighty-sixth Personality Pedagogy newsletter highlighting what’s new at http://personalitypedagogy.arcadia.edu. For more about the links below and approximately 3,161 other interesting links related to personality psychology, please visit: http://personalitypedagogy.arcadia.edu.

This big news this month is that Personality Pedagogy has a new look: photos! If you browse any of our pages, you will notice the content is there but the layout is more aesthetically pleasing, incorporating many photos and illustrations. Also, we are now a mobile friendly site, meaning that it is easier than ever to look up content on the fly when you away from your computer. We will continue updating and repairing broken links over the summer and in the process finding new sites to add as you can see by this packed newsletter.

As ever, please pass this newsletter on to interested colleagues and invite them to sign up for future issues and to visit the home of Personality Pedagogy: http://personalitypedagogy.arcadia.edu. Remember, you can view the current newsletter, comment on newsletters, re-read what you missed in previous newsletters, or search all newsletters by checking out our blog at https://personalitypedagogy.wordpress.com and you can even receive Personality Pedagogy newsletters via RSS feed as soon as they are posted, by clicking on the “RSS-posts” button on the bottom right.

Cheers,
Marianne

Marianne Miserandino
miserandino “at” arcadia “dot” edu

1. The Personality Pedagogy Monthly Newsletter
http://personalitypedagogy.arcadia.edu

Sign up here to receive this newsletter delivered to your e-mail inbox once a month! We promise never to share your information with anybody else or to use it for any other purpose than Personality Pedagogy.

2. Using OK Cupid to Teach Research Methods

Co-founder Christian Rudder talks about how OK Cupid collects and uses data. Their methods raise important questions about research including: “What are different kinds of social science data? How can/should we manipulate respondents to get it? What does it look like? How can it be used to answer questions? Or, how can we understand the important difference between having the data and doing an interpretation of it?”

3. Positive Reinforcement – The Big Bang Theory

Sheldon uses chocolate to shape Penny’s behavior. Later, Sheldon and Leonard have a discussion of conditioning, which, despite some misuse of terms, may still spark discussion in your class.

4. Nature v Nurture: Research Shows It’s Both

A meta-analysis of almost every twin study conducted from across the world shows that the average variation for human traits and diseases is 49% genetic and 51% due to environmental factors. This, according to research published in the journal Nature Genetics and summarized here. Published May 15, 2015.

5. On The California Shore, Sizing Up Female Marines’ Combat Readiness

The Pentagon has decreed that the Marines must open combat roles for women by 2016 unless they can show a good reason not to. The Marine Corps has teamed up with the University of Pittsburgh to scientifically measure skills, strength, and endurance in order to establish valid and reliable gender-neutral standards.

6. How 4th Grade Predicts Your Future

“A growing body of psychological research is revealing a few remarkable connections between our childhood experiences with peers and our lives in adulthood.” Read about personality coherence of adult personality in kids who were rejected, controversial, neglected, and accepted as fourth graders. From “Psychology Today”, June 2015.

7. James Randi Educational Foundation

“James Randi has an international reputation as a magician and escape artist, but today he is best known as the world’s most tireless investigator and demystifier of paranormal and pseudoscientific claims.” Towards this end, his website features educational modules on “How to Think About Dubious Claims”, “Astrology: Superstition or Science?”, “Do you have ESP?” and more.

8. A Key Researcher Says “Grit” isn’t Ready for High-Stakes Measures

Grit, the “ability to persevere when times get tough, or to delay gratification in pursuit of a goal”, has been embraced by educators, the media. But according to researcher Angela Duckworth, “the enthusiasm is getting ahead of the science”. From NPR, May 13, 2015.

9. This Day in Jewish History: A Psychoanalyst Who Couldn’t Understand War is Born

“March 23, 1900 is the birthdate of the Jewish scholar and psychoanalyst Erich Fromm, who gave up the religious obligations of the Orthodox Judaism of his youth for the study of the psychology of love – and war, which, to his mind, made very little rational sense.” From “Haaretz”, March 23, 2015.

10. Allport

A whiteboard video animation on the life of Gordon Allport. Runs 2 minutes and 19 seconds.

11. Gordon Allport Wiki

Includes pages on Allport’s early life, trait theory, and his visit with Freud.

12. Social Psychology Then and Now

Writing for the APS Observer, Anthony G. Greenwald describes the life and work of Gordon Allport including his work related to attitudes, IAT, prejudice, values, and more. From January 2013.

13. A Profile of Aaron Beck

“PsychCentral” presents this brief profile of Aaron Beck.

14. The Doctor is IN

“The American Scholar” presents this overview of the life, work, and theories of Aaron Beck. Posted September 2009.

15. Whether You’re a Lark or a Night Owl, Your Sleeping Habits Say Volumes About Your Health.

A brief summary of the research on morning larks and night owls and how they differ in their disposition, breakfast habits, alarm clock use, vulnerability to jet lag, age, and more. From April 2013.

16. Centre For Personal Construct Psychology

The University of Hertfordshire maintains this site related to personal construct psychology (PCP). Features background information on PCP, George Kelly, the repertory grid, courses and services, literature and library, and more.

17. Kelly (1978): Confusion and the Clock

The last work of George Kelly where he discusses the idea of death. Originally published as Kelly, G.A. (1978) Confusion and the Clock In Fransella, F. (Ed.) Personal Construct Psychology. Academic Press.

18. Kelly (1969): The Threat of Aggression

Kelly, G. A. (1969). The threat of aggression. In B. Maher (Ed.), Clinical Psychology and Personality: The Selected Papers of George Kelly (pp. 281-288). London, UK: Wiley.

19. The Duckworth Lab

The research lab of Angela Duckworth at the University of Pennsylvania: “Our lab focuses on two traits that predict achievement: grit and self-control. Grit is the tendency to sustain interest in and effort toward very long-term goals (Duckworth et al., 2007). Self-control is the voluntary regulation of behavioral, emotional, and attentional impulses in the presence of momentarily gratifying temptations or diversions (Duckworth & Seligman, 2005; Duckworth & Steinberg, 2015).”

20. Favorite Link Revisited: The Pavlovian Response to Seeing Birthday Announcements on Facebook

The Pavlovian Response to Seeing Birthday Announcements on Facebook Mike Masnick discusses an “experiment” conducted by David Plotz of Slate magazine. Plotz noted that well-wishers responded automatically when they saw that a friend was having a birthday on Facebook.