Personality Pedagogy Newsletter Volume 8, Number 11, July 2014

July 22, 2014

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 3,030 other interesting links related to personality, please visit: http://personalitypedagogy.arcadia.edu.

This has been a good month for personality psychologists and teachers of personality psychology. News sources and social media have been buzzing with interesting findings directly related to personality psychology. Perhaps you’ve heard about the infamous Facebook study on emotional contagion or seen the Verizon ad illustrating the social factors which can undermine young girls’ achievements in science and math? Or, like, um, you know, how that annoying “Teenspeak” language is actually related to personality or how friends share similar genes? And, have you ever wondered about the attachment style of contestants on the TV reality shows “The Bachelor” and “The Bachelorette”? Yes, we have all this and more for you in this month’s newsletter.

This month we have added a new page on “Testing and Personnel Selection”. This includes many links that were previously included in the “Tests and Measurement” page, which, by the way, is now named “Personality Assessment” to better reflect the current state of the field.

Quick, grab your favorite chilled drink, browse the links below and place your bets on how “The Bachelorette” will end next Monday, secure in your knowledge of personality!

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. Virtuous Cycles: Night Owls and Early Birds

New research published in “Psychological Science” and summarized here by Wray Herbert suggests that there is an interaction between cognitive depletion and circadian fluctuations in tiredness. That is, people are more likely to cheat when they experience low energy, i.e., a dip in their biological clock. This suggests that early birds are likely to make bad choices later in the day and nights owls earlier in the day.

3. Powerful Ad Shows What A Little Girl Hears When You Tell Her She’s Pretty

According to the National Science Foundation, 66% of 4th grades girls say they like math and science, yet women make up only 18% of engineering majors in college. This Verizon commercial illustrates the social cues which may discourage girls from math and science during their early childhood. Runs 1 minute and 3 seconds.

4. Resilience: Motorcyclist Thrown After Crash, Walks Away

“I can either land on my feet or my head right now” is what was going through the mind of 24 year old Michael Smith as he was hit by a car while riding his motorcycle through an intersection in Florida. Amazingly, he flips head-over-heels, lands on his feet, and walks away. Runs 51 seconds.

5. The Secret of Effective Motivation

Psychologists Amy Wrzesniewski and Barry Schwartz summarize their research of the internal or instrumental motives of Cadets at the United States West Point Military Academy: “Our study suggests that efforts should be made to structure activities so that instrumental consequences do not become motives. Helping people focus on the meaning and impact of their work, rather than on, say, the financial returns it will bring, may be the best way to improve not only the quality of their work but also — counterintuitive though it may seem — their financial success.” From, “The New York Times”, July 4, 2014.

6. The Conscientiousness of Kidspeak

The “like”s and “you know”s ubiquitous in the language of 12-14 year olds are not, as parents bemoan, due to “sloppy indifference” but rather to “undue scrupulousness”. According to research by linguists at the University of Texas, youth high in Conscientiousness use these markers to signal that they have left out the details of what they are relating for the sake of economy. By Adam Gopnik for “The New Yorker”, July 20 2014.

7. Study Cracks How Brain Processes Emotions

From the website: “Although feelings are personal and subjective, the human brain turns them into a standard code [of neural activation] that objectively represents emotions across different senses, situations and even people, reports a new study. “Despite how personal our feelings feel, the evidence suggests our brains use a standard code to speak the same emotional language,” one researcher concludes.” From “ScienceDaily”, July 9, 2014.

8. Research Ethics: The Facebook Experiment: Reaction From Psychologists

According to former psychology professor Michael Britt in his podcast “The Psych Files”: “You’ve probably heard about the controversy over the Facebook manipulation of user’s News Feeds and the (possible) effect this had on user’s emotions. In the latest episode of The Psych Files I summarize the study and my conclusions about it. Also included on the website is a (large) concept map that also summarizes the study, links to references and Facebook’s official response. Also included in the map and the episode: suggestions for students regarding how a proper informed consent form might have been written and presented to students.” Episode 22, July 1, 2014. Runs 33 minutes and 16 seconds.

9. Do Friends Have Similar Genomes?

According to research by James Fowler and Nicholas Christakis, “We are more genetically similar to our friends than we are to strangers. […] Looking at differences between nearly 2,000 people, recruited as part of a heart study in a small US town, they found that friends shared about 0.1% more DNA, on average, than strangers.” From “BBC News”, July 15, 2014.

10. 7 Ways You Can Easily Increase Your Willpower

Eric Barker of the “Barking Up The Wrong Tree” blog presents these 7 evidence-based ways of increasing your willpower in your daily life. July 20, 2014.

11. 11 Interview Questions Hiring Managers Ask To Test Your Personality

From the website: “In an effort to find new hires that are great cultural fits, employers are putting more emphasis on soft skills, or intangible qualities […] some qualities that are a good indication of success in a role include organizational and communication skills, great team player, strong leadership skills, an ability to think on your feet, drive, and initiative.” From “Business Insider”, June 11, 2014.

12. Here’s How Amazing Leaders Adapt to Crazy Situations

According to research by clinical psychologist Leslie Patch, personality profiling of executives at GE, McDonald’s, Merrill Lynch, and more, found that active coping is the greatest predictor of managerial success. From “Business Insider”, June 20, 2014.

13. New Social Media Study Investigates Relationships Among Facebook Use, Narcissism and Empathy

A study by Tracy Alloway and colleagues and summarized here for “ScienceDaily” suggests that a some features of Facebook, like profile photos are linked to narcissism, while others, like chatting are linked to empathy. According to Alloway, “Every narcissist needs a reflecting pool. Just as Narcissus gazed into the pool to admire his beauty, social networking sites, like Facebook, have become our modern-day pool.” July 3, 2014.

14. What Attachment Style is The Bachelorette’s Andi Dorfman?

Erica Djossa writing for the “Science of Relationships” blog explains her evidence for why this latest eligible lady from the reality TV series may have secure attachment, even though secure attachment doesn’t make for “juicy reality TV”.

15. How Your Mood Changes Your Personality

Research by Jan Querengässer and Sebastian Schindler found “When participants answered questions about their personality in a sad state, they scored “considerably” higher on trait neuroticism, and “moderately” lower on extraversion and agreeableness, as compared with when they completed the questionnaire in a neutral mood state”. From “BPS Research Digest”, July 17, 2014.

16. Self-Motivation: How “You Can Do it!” Beats “I Can Do It”

Research by Sanda Dolcos and Dolores Albarracín published in the “European Journal of Social Psychology” and summarized here for the “BPS Research Digest” suggests that second-person self-talk (e.g., “You can do it!”) is more effective than first-person self-talk. The researchers surmised that second-person talk may be effective because it “cues memories of receiving support and encouragement from others, especially in childhood”. July 9, 2014.

17. Favorite Link Revisited: Making Connections: Social Issues in the Psychology Classroom

Susan Goldstein of the University of Redlands established and maintains this site to: provide teachers of psychology with resources to assist them, both pedagogically and conceptually, in making connections between current social issues and specific topics across the psychology curriculum. The site features summaries of research findings, suggestions for videos, podcasts, and other multimedia resources, pedagogy-focused resources on relevant classroom activities and teaching strategies, and links to professional organizations and scholarly web resources with information on social issues.

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Personality Pedagogy Newsletter Volume 7, Number 5, January, 2013

January 26, 2013

Hello and welcome to the seventy-seventh Personality Pedagogy newsletter highlighting what’s new at http://personalitypedagogy.arcadia.edu. For more about the links below and approximately 2,725 other interesting links related to personality, please visit: http://personalitypedagogy.arcadia.edu.

Happy New Year! Happy New Month! And for many of you, Happy New Semester! As much as I hate the darkness of winter here on the East Coast, I do relish the chance to start again with new beginnings. If you are like me, then you will welcome this month’s newsletter filled with new things to refresh and renew your personality psychology classes.

Speaking of happy, we’ve got a bit of a debate of sorts happening in this issue. Check out three of our newest links suggesting that money does buy happiness —  but that there’s more to life than being happy, and judge for yourself.

This month marks 20 years since the first fMRI study was published. To celebrate, the APS journal Perspectives on Psychological Science features a special section in which leading scientists reflect on the contributions this brain scanning technique has made to our understanding of human thought. While not strictly related to personality, the reflections are nonetheless interesting. Check it out here.

Special thanks goes out to Jon Mueller for the link to the Easy Bake Oven controversy (see below). Be sure to check out his newsletter and website if you are interested in teaching social psychology.

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. Maslow’s Theory of Self-Actualization, More or Less Actualized

Psychologist Ann Reitan reflects on Abraham Maslow’s notion of self-actualization. First, she explains what it is, then she muses on what it means for different people at different times in their lives, drawing on the work of Eric Erikson. Finally, she suggests that self-actualizing people may find meaning at lower levels of the hierarchy, such as when their needs are being threatened. She gives examples of people who she believed were actualizing while facing death (e.g., Viktor Frankl), fearing for their safety (e.g., Nelson Mandela), losing their freedom (e.g., Ghandi), and experiencing mental illness (e.g., Sylvia Plath). From “Brain Blogger”, January 8, 2013.

3. There’s More to Life Than Being Happy

According to Viktor Frankl, “It is the very pursuit of happiness that thwarts happiness,” and yet Americans and American psychology are obsessed with happiness. Meaningfulness and happiness are not the same thing, and this article draws on new work by Roy Baumeister, Kathleen Vohs, Jennifer Aaker & Emily Garbinsky (2013) to understand the difference. From “The Atlantic”, January 9, 2013. Their forthcoming paper in the “Journal of Positive Psychology” is available here: http://tinyurl.com/b8mbayk (opens in PDF format).

4. Yes, Money Does Buy Happiness: 6 Lessons from the Newest Research on Income and Well-Being

A summary of 6 observations from the paper “The New Stylized Facts about Income and Subjective Well-Being” by Daniel W. Sacks, Betsey Stevenson, and Justin Wolfers. From “The Atlantic,” January 10, 2013.

5. Implicit Assessment of The Five Factors

Researches have hit upon an implicit way of measuring personality, the “semantic misattribution procedure”. “In this initial study, and two more involving nearly 300 participants … participants’ scores on this test for conscientiousness, neuroticism and extraversion correlated with explicit measures of the same traits. The new implicit test also did a better job than explicit measures alone of predicting relevant behaviours, such as church attendance, perseverance on a lab task, and punctuality. The implicit scores for extraversion showed good consistency over 6 months. Finally, the new implicit test showed fewer signs of being influenced by social desirability concerns, as compared with traditional explicit measures.” From “BPS Research Digest”, December 13, 2012.

6. Assessing Personality via Social Media Postings: TruthSerum.com

TruthSerum.com claims to assess personality though people’s social media posts. Users can analyze their own personality and see how they compare to Barak Obama, Mitt Romney, Abraham Lincoln, the Unabomber Ted Kaczynski and some 135 other famous people on Neuroticism, Extraversion, Openness, Agreeableness, Conscientiousness, Machiavellianism, Narcissism, and Psychopathy (aka, Psychoticism).

7. You Can’t See It, But You’ll be a Different Person in 10 Years

“No matter how old people are, they seem to believe that who they are today is essentially who they’ll be tomorrow.” according to the End of History Illusion. According to researcher Daniel Gilbert, “Life is a process of growing and changing, and what our results suggest is that growth and change really never stops … despite the fact that at every age from 18 to 68, we think it’s pretty much come to a close.” You can listen to the original segment and comment by Gilbert here, on the NPR website (runs 3 minutes, 58 seconds) or read a more in-depth summary from the “New York Times” here.

8. Sexism-Free Easy Bake Oven On the Way

Due to the protests started by 13-year old McKenna Pope (here) and backed by big-name chefs including Bobby Flay, and the general public, Hasbro, the makers of the class Easy-Bake, oven will launch a new line of gender-neutral ovens that will feature gender-neutral colors and more boys in their advertisements.

9. Activities Guide: Teaching Ethics in the Introduction to Psychology Course

The Office of Teaching Resources in Psychology (OTRP) is pleased to announce this new resource for teachers by Ana Ruiz and Judith Warchal of Alvernia University. “This 23-page guide presents 17 activities related to ethics for each chapter in a typical Introduction to Psychology text as it integrates the APA Learning Goals and Outcomes for ethics into that course.  For each chapter, the activity lists the student learning outcome, instructions for conducting the activity, materials needed, approximate time required, and a method of assessment.” Activities most relevant to the personality class include APA ethics code jeopardy, research methods, personality testing, and debating controversial topics.

10. Who’s Gay On TV? Dads, Journalists, Investigators, And Footmen

Presents an interesting account of the various portrayals of gays and lesbians found on TV today. Though the number of gays and lesbians has increased in recent years, for some, the portrayals may not be as realistic as they could be. Published January 3, 2013. (also available in audio running 7 minutes, 45 seconds).

11. Gorillas, Watermelons and Sperm: The Greatest Genomes Sequenced in 2012

Scientists identified the genetic codes of some of the world’s most fascinating animals and plants. Check out what they found in this online photo gallery of 8 stunning images posted by “Popular Science”, January 2, 2013.

12. The 12 cognitive biases that prevent you from being rational

A good summary of 12 common flaws in our thinking including the confirmation bias, gambler’s fallacy, neglecting probability, the current moment bias, the anchoring effect, and more.

13. A Chart of Emotions that Have No Names in the English Language

Designer Pei-Ying Lin has created interesting conceptual charts of emotions including one for emotions that have no names in the English language and another for new emotions invented by the Internet.

14. Neurotic People Might Have Better Health Outcomes When They are High in Conscientiousness.

People who are high in Neuroticism and Conscientiousness experience lower levels of Interleukin 6 (IL-6), a biomarker for inflammation and chronic disease; lower body-mass index scores; and fewer diagnosed chronic health conditions. From “Prevention News”, November 2012.

15. Darwin Was Wrong About Dating

New research is beginning to question the long-accepted evolutionary explanation for various mating behaviors. Read about some of the alternative explanations and new data on sex differences in mating strategies, selectiveness, and desire for casual sex. From “The New York Times,” January 12, 2013.

16. Favorite Link Revisited: Careers in Psychology

From the website: “Are you preparing yourself for a career in psychology? Well, you’ve come to the right place! We understand your enthusiasm and eagerness to get started in a growing and lucrative field like psychology. However, we also know how difficult it can be to get started in this field, which is exactly why we’re here.” The site features background information on careers, degree paths, programs, internships, licensure information, interviews with psychology professionals, and more.


Personality Pedagogy Newsletter Volume 6, Number 12, August, 2012

August 6, 2012

Hello and welcome to the seventy-second Personality Pedagogy newsletter highlighting what’s new at http://personalitypedagogy.arcadia.edu. For more about the links below and approximately 2,567 other interesting links related to personality, please visit: http://personalitypedagogy.arcadia.edu.

Personality Pedagogy this month is all about ethics. In July, the Society for the Teaching of Psychology’s Office of Teaching Resources in Psychology (OTRP) introduced two new resources to help instructors teach students about ethics. The first one focuses on ethical issues in research and is called “Beyond Milgram: Expanding Research Ethics Education to Participant Responsibilities”. The second, “Educating Students About Plagiarism,” focuses on plagiarism and provides materials to help students and instructors recognize and respond to plagiarism. You will find links to these two resources below, along with a few other sites on research ethics, including the UNESCO Universal Declaration on Bioethics and Human Rights, Teaching Ethical Issues Through Movies and Other Art Resources, Moral Games for Teaching Ethics, and a repeat of the link to the complete set of three videos on Protecting Human Subjects Training from the United States Health Resources and Services Administration.

This month, Personality Pedagogy is pleased to debut two new pages. We have collected so many links to assignments, exercises, activities, case studies, electronic texts, examples, illustrations, lectures, lecture notes, lecture slides, tests, measures, scales, and audio and visual resources that we had to create stand-alone pages for Happiness and for Personality Development. Until now, resources for Happiness were mixed in the general Positive Psychology page, while resources for Personality Development, including stability, change, and personality coherence, were mixed in the Trait Theories page. We hope this change will help instructors find quality resources more efficiently.

If you, like us, are savoring what’s left of the summer with one eye out on the year ahead, don’t forget to check out our General Resources page where you can find lots of ideas, from ice-breakers for the first day of class to clickers and crossword puzzles, to study strategies and online textbooks in personality theory. Whether you are new to teaching personality or an “old dog” who could use some new tricks and a little inspiration, there’s something for everybody there. Check it out!

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://www.arcadia.edu/personality-pedagogy-form.htm

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. Beyond Milgram: Expanding Research Ethics Education to Participant Responsibilities

By Larissa K. Barber (Northern Illinois University) and Patricia G. Bagsby (Saint Louis University), this 33 page document describes participant ethics and an educational approach to participant rights and responsibilities that addresses the reciprocal nature of the researcher-participant relationship. It also provides four instructor resources: (a) websites that discuss participants’ rights and responsibilities, (b) a student learning module, (c) supplemental module resources (a Knowledge Retention Quiz, Answers to the quiz, a questionnaire to assess students’ beliefs about research ethics, and suggested discussion questions), and (d) references for additional resources and readings.

3. UNESCO Universal Declaration on Bioethics and Human Rights

The declaration, endorsed in 2005, addresses “ethical issues related to medicine, life sciences and associated technologies as applied to human beings, taking into account their social, legal and environmental dimensions.” Available in English, French, Spanish, Russian, Chinese and Arabic.

4. Teaching Bioethics: Ethical Issues Through Movies and Other Art Resources

This program takes users through UNESCO’s Universal Declaration on Bioethics and Human Rights exploring human dignity and human rights, benefit and harm, autonomy and responsibility, respect, equality, privacy, cultural diversity and more. Each unit includes 2-5 minute video excerpts from movies (e.g., “Twelve Angry Men”) and TV shows (e.g., “Grey’s Anatomy”) to spark discussion. Also available in Spanish.

5. Moral Games for Teaching Bioethics

Darryl R. J. Macer wrote this UNESCO guide for instructors teaching bioethics. Through these 43 games which spark critical thinking and values clarification as students “plan, act, monitor, evaluate, and reflect on moral choices.” Opens in PDF format.

6. Exploring Bioethics

Developed with the NIH Department of Bioethics and written by Education Development Center, Inc. this guide “supports high school biology teachers in raising and addressing bioethical issues with their students and engages students in rigorous thinking and discussions. By providing conceptual guidelines that promote careful thinking about difficult cases, it stresses the importance of presenting thoughtful and relevant reasons for considered positions on ethical issues”. The guide includes six teaching modules each with activities, masters, lesson plans, and teacher support materials. While designed for grades 9-12 most of the information is readily adaptable to college level courses. Two of the modules are particularly suitable for psychology classes (e.g., research ethics of human experimentation, genetic testing).

7. Educating Students About Plagiarism

By Marika Lamoreaux, Kim Darnell, Elizabeth Sheehan, and Chantal
Tusher (Georgia State University), this resource contains materials to help educate students about plagiarism and to help faculty understand how to handle it if it occurs. Included are an overview for faculty “Educating Students,” a slide show for a lecture “Plagiarism,” a worksheet for students “Recognizing Plagiarism,” a plagiarism contract students sign “Plagiarism Contract,” suggested answers faculty can offer to respond to common student excuses “Answers to Common Excuses,” and a flowchart showing how one university handles plagiarism reports “Academic Dishonesty Flowchart.”

8. Technology for Educators

Created by psychologist Sue Franz “finding new technologies so you don’t have to” where she shares her discoveries of technology which enhances her teaching or the learning of her students. Includes an overview and description of tech essentials, handouts from her workshops, and handy information on everything from blogging to presentations to file management and downloading videos.

9. 10 Fun Activities for Adjectives of Personality

Originally designed for English teachers to help their students understand and describe nuances of character, this site offers 10 activities exploring adjectives helping students to describe the personality of themselves and others. Includes links to positive personality adjectives and negative personality adjectives. Good for an ice breaker or as a class exercise to introduce trait theory.

10. The Shadow Exercise

As part of the “Teaching Clinical Psychology” webpage, John Suler, Rider University, includes this exercise on the shadow. Students reflect on a person they don’t like very much and consider if the traits they dislike in another reflect traits they don’t like in themselves.

11. Essential Secrets of Psychotherapy: What is the “Shadow”?

Stephen A. Diamond describes how to understand the unconscious dark side of our psyche in this article from “Psychology Today”, April 2012.

12. Return of the Repressed: Is a Mysterious Outbreak of Mass Hysteria Proving Freud Right?

Stephen A. Diamond wonders if recent cases of mass hysteria may be due to the impressive power of the unconscious reasserting itself in an anti-psychodynamic, pharmacologically-indoctrinated climate. From “Psychology Today”, February 2012.

13. Childhood Memories

As part of the “Teaching Clinical Psychology” webpage, John Suler, Rider University, includes this exercise on memories. Students reflect on one or two early childhood memories and answer questions. Good for illustrating aspects of Alfred Adler’s and Sigmund Freud’s theories.

14. Timothy Leary’s Interpersonal Behavior Circle Personal Inventory

This page includes the full 128-item scale as well as scoring instructions for the Leary Interpersonal circumplex model of personality. The model uses the two dimensions of dominant-submissive and love-hate to form 16 categories. Also check out the full text of Leary’s original 1957 paper here.

15. Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi: Flow, the secret to happiness

Mihaly Czikszentmihalyi asks, “What makes a life worth living?” Noting that money cannot make us happy, he looks to those who find pleasure and lasting satisfaction in activities that bring about a state of “flow” (Runs 18 minutes, 59 seconds).

16. Twins Don’t Share Everything

Scientists have discovered twins show differences in their DNA at birth due to differences in their epigenetics, the molecules that act on genes, according to this article, by Stephen Ornes, in “Science News for Kids”, July 31, 2012.

17. Favorite Link Revisited: Protecting Human Subjects Training

The complete set of three videos is available from the Health Resources and Services Administration. Modules 1 and 2: Evolving Concern: Protection for Human Subjects (22 minutes) and The Belmont Report: Basic Ethical Principles and Their Application (28 minutes); Module 3: Balancing Society’s Mandates: Criteria for Protocol Review (36 minutes)