Our weekly round-up of the best psychological coverage from elsewhere on the internet
You may have heard of the “Mozart Effect,” the idea that playing classical music can improve babies’ intelligence. But is this claim true? In a word, no – but check out this beautiful video from Claudia Hammond BBC Reel to learn more about where the myth came from.
Studies have shown that both male and female observers – including healthcare professionals – underestimate the level of pain women experience. We can also overestimate men’s pain, and there is evidence that these gender biases even extend to beliefs about children’s pain. However, more work is needed to understand the perception of pain beyond the standard pool of white Western participants, writes Amanda C de C Williams below The conversation.
It is a popular belief that you can tell a liar by the way he acts. However, research has shown that this is not really the case: we are not very good at determining whether someone is lying because of their non-verbal behavior. And while psychologists have found that there are other, better ways of finding out the truth about a suspect’s story – such as certain interview techniques – many police and border guards still rely on the old, ineffective methods, writes Jessica Seigel BBC Future.
The Psychological Science Accelerator could offer a new model for conducting psychology research that could potentially help the field overcome its replication crisis. The group has already started several large international, pre-registered studies, both replications and new work. But is the model sustainable? Brian Resnick takes a look Vox.
We tend to think we should fix something by adding more things. This emerges from a number of studies in which participants were presented with various scenarios such as improving an itinerary or an essay: Most people tended to add goals or words rather than remove them. However, the work also suggests that prompts and exercise options increase the likelihood that people will find “subtractive” solutions instead, writes John Timmer under Ars Technica.
A US panel has concluded that the use of brain organoids in research is ethical, reports Jocelyn Kaiser at science. The committee set up by the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine stated that it is “extremely unlikely” that organoids of the brain will be conscious in the near future and that no new form of labor inspection is required with these “mini-brains” .
How does growing up in poverty affect brain development? A number of studies have found that children with impoverished backgrounds have certain differences in brain structure, as we wrote in 2019. However, these data are largely correlative. Therefore, researchers are currently investigating how reducing poverty through regular cash payments actually affects cognition and brain development, Alla Katsnelson reports on New York Times.
Compiled by Matthew Warren (@ MattBWarren), Editor of BPS Biomedarticles