Category Archives: Science

Wanna Be a Doctor? You Need Psychology – Guide to the new MCAT

doctor-BG-blue-worldPsychology has finally become recognized as an study necessary to become a doctor, according to the non-profit organization AAMC (Association of American Medical Colleges). This has ramifications for the rest of the world, as its famous medical exam – the MCAT (Medical College Admissions Test) – is used in 114 countries across the world. The test has undergone major changes that will come into effect in 2015, and one of the changes is the substantial addition in testing psychology knowledge.

Transitioning to the New MCAT

The Current (i.e., soon-to-be-outdated) MCAT

In the current edition of the MCAT, there are three sections:

Posted in Medicine & Health, Psychology, Science | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

America’s Most Outrageous Legal Decision of 2013

affluenza

There have been many profoundly unjust decisions in the United States this year. One of the worst would have to be the setting free of George Zimmerman, who shot and killed the unarmed black teen Trayvon Martin, who committed absolutely no crime and was literally trying to run away from Zimmerman, who was wielding a gun. Yet, an even more outrageous case has surfaced recently, which I can only succinctly  describe as: the worst legal decision of the entire year.

Posted in Abnormal & Clinical Psych, Biographical, Culture, Legal Issues, Psychology | 1 Comment

Life Experiences Not Only Influence Your Genes, but Your Children’s Genes

Mountain Top

People tend not to carefully consider the ramifications of many of their actions. Scaling a mountain, taking an extra glass of wine, working longer hours for higher pay, etc. In fact, many people have trouble considering what the consequences of their actions will be a year, a month, or even a week later. This is of course why things like gambling addictions are as prevalent as they are. Therefore, it’s only natural that we don’t think of the genetic ramifications of our actions. But new research suggests that those genetic ramifications extend beyond our own lives.

Posted in Biology & Evolution, Science | Leave a comment

The Whole Story on Japan’s 99% Conviction Rate, and the Corruption that Follows

handcuffs red bg

The conviction rate in Japan is unbelievable. Some reports say 99.8%, others say 99.97%; but it’s clear that it’s above 99%. Why is this so? Are Japanese police really so perfect that they almost always arrest the real criminals and always have the evidence to prove their cases? Don’t bet on it. The Japanese legal system is corrupt, and the effects of this broken system can be felt by anyone in Japan who has ever been detained, regardless of innocence.

Confessing for Nothing

This excerpt from The Economist sums up the problem:

Posted in Culture, Japan, Legal Issues, Psychology | Tagged , , , , , | 5 Comments

The Secret to Happiness Revealed (No, seriously)

Being happy makes you not only live longer, but it makes you more successful in life. Philosophers have been writing about happiness for ages, and it is today one of the most popular topics in psychology research. Luckily, the science is gradually becoming more clear on what factors do and don’t contribute to happiness. However, this article is not about a list of things that will increase your happiness; it is instead about the single most important thing about being and staying happy. It’s the reason why some people who you would expect to be absolutely miserable are in fact exceptionally happy. So what’s the secret?

Posted in Culture, Featured, Legal Issues, Medicine & Health, Psychology, Science, Social Psych, TED | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Third Culture Kids and Hybrid Cultures

World on the face

Where are you from? If you’re like most people, the question seems easy enough to answer. But if you hate getting asked that question in the first place, then you might be a third-culture kid. This is a phenomenon not well-known to most people. Knowing about it, however, can be very helpful in understanding culture in general, the world in its togetherness, and our own identity. So what exactly is a Third Culture Kid (TCK)?

Posted in Culture, Psychology, Science, Social Psych | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Implicit vs. Overt Racism – Are We All a Little Racist?

black kid shining white man's shoes

I hesitate to say “there are two types of racists out there,” but there are two types of racism. One is the blatant racism that you hear from people who just have a misguided sense of superiority with their own race; another is the implicit bias people have when making perceptions of people based on race.

Posted in Culture, Japan, Media, Psychology, Science, Social Psych | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Rotten America – Big Prison, Arrest Quotas, and What Education Really Pays For

this-school-closed sign

ResearchBlogging.org Sure, learning the times table isn’t going to make you any less likely to stab someone at age 25, but one thing that education critics don’t understand is that it’s the experience in its entirety which is important, not each individual class. School is where people learn some of life’s most important lessons, such as the importance of friends, the benefits of working hard, and the fact that there are various people with different ideas about the world. As it turns out, studies have even been showing that educated people are far less likely to commit crimes than uneducated people. So why is it that there are so many cases of schools in the US closing down in order to build more prisons? Well look on the bright side – students won’t even need to go to school to learn the most important lesson the American education system has to offer: Life is not fair.

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Are Patents Protecting Ideas or Stifling Innovation?

lawsuit gavel on coins

A patent is a form of intellectual property that can be granted with the presupposition that an invention for public consumption will come out of it later. Parents are good because it allows “the little guy” the time to make his or her invention without worrying about some giant corporation stealing the idea and making it themselves. If a giant corporation does steal the idea, then they must pay this little guy money, which may make the idea theft not worth it in the end. However, what happens when patents for every minuscule idea are granted to people who don’t even have any desire to make something from them? As people have been saying for years, we get the stifling of innovation.

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Can Dogs Sniff Out Cancer? Can Rats Sniff Out Tuberculosis?

Rat Sniffing

I know what you’re thinking – “dogs can sniff out cancer? What a bunch of nonsense!” And do you really want to trust rats with detecting a disease, when they were responsible for so much of the spread of disease throughout history? Well don’t hold it against them, because these animals didn’t know anything about it. In fact, these animals are now used for medical diagnoses, and people’s lives depend on them. It appears that dogs actually can sniff out cancer, and rats can sniff out tuberculosis (TB). Astonishingly, their amazing abilities to smell don’t even stop there.

Posted in Medicine & Health, Science, TED | Tagged | 1 Comment