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Reflections On Science

Limits to brain scanning technology – Prof Donna Rose Addis

Sarah-Jane O'Connor posted in on July 13th, 2016.

A proposal to test how reliable brain scans could be in detecting whether suspects knew anything about a crime goes beyond the limits of the technology, says Professor Donna Rose Addis. Writing in the New Zealand Herald, University of Auckland psychologist Prof Addis responded to an article published on June 29 describing the work of ‘The […]

Natural Health Bill a bitter pill – Julia Rucklidge

John Kerr posted in on June 22nd, 2016.

Writing in the New Zealand Herald, University of Canterbury Clinical psychologist Prof Julia Rucklidge outlines her concerns over legislation to control natural health products. An except (read in full here): Julia Rucklidge: Natural Health Bill a bitter pill for nutrient sector Mental illness is on the rise. Figures reveal crisis referrals from 2010 to 2015 have […]

The DSM-5 and redefining mental illnesses – experts respond

John Kerr posted in on May 17th, 2013.

The latest edition of the manual defining criteria for mental illness is set to have a major impact on how patients are diagnosed and how their treatment is funded. Walk into the office of any psychiatrist or psychologist and one item is guaranteed to be on the book shelf: the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of […]

NZ ‘truthiness’ research featured on Colbert Report

John Kerr posted in on August 14th, 2012.

A New Zealand-led study investigating how images affect our belief in written statements has been featured on the news satire show ‘the Colbert Report’. The research, undertaken by Eryn Newman, a PhD student in Victoria’s School of Psychology, and colleagues, examined the phenomenon American comedian and news satirist Stephen Colbert calls ‘truthiness’-the feeling that something […]

‘Text-speak’ more distracting – study

John Kerr posted in on August 9th, 2012.

New research from the University of Canterbury has shown that reading text-speak – the abbreviated writing many of us use in text messages – is harder on the brain than reading plain English. Psychologists from the university have been picking apart the differences between the reading normal English and ‘text-speak’, that digital pseudo-language which skips […]

The Psychology of climate change

John Kerr posted in on June 28th, 2012.

In the latest issue of Element magazine (distributed with the New Zealand Herald) Andy Kenworthy explores new research into the reasoning of climate change denial. An excerpt (read in full here):  A climate of denial Despite a wealth of evidence backed by the world’s top scientists, a startling number of people still refuse to believe […]

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Prof Marc Wilson on the End of the World

John Kerr posted in on January 27th, 2012.

Associate Professor Marc Wilson, from the Department of Psychology, Victoria University, talked to TVNZ’s Breakfast show about the Mayan calendar, doomsday theories and why some people truly believe the end is nigh. Watch Prof Wilson on Breakfast here. From the TVNZ website: Belief in doomsday stems from distress – expert Believing the end of the […]

Copyright hits psychological boundary

John Kerr posted in on January 13th, 2012.

An American university has filed a lawsuit against a New Zealand hypnotherapist for breach of copyright after he published what it describes as cheat sheet for one of its psychology tests. A Napier-based hypnotherapist, Andrew Dobson, says he has removed from his website information about a psychological test which the University of Minnesota claims breached […]

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2012: Happy New Apocalypse?

John Kerr posted in on January 12th, 2012.

Joseph Gelfer, Adjunct Research Associate, School of Political and Social Inquiry at Monash University, picks apart the 2012 apocalypse theory for the Australian science website The Conversation (reproduced here under Creative Commons licence). 2012 cometh: how to prepare for the apocalypse If you believe the doomsayers, the human race is not long for this earth. By […]

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NZ pigeons count in international media

Kent posted in on December 23rd, 2011.

A New Zealand researcher who showed pigeons can be as good as rhesus monkeys at sorting images of shapes into numerical order has made news around the world, with reports of of the former racing pigeons in Dunedin popping up in the New York Times,  Scientific American and a swathe of TV channels. Though the […]

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