According to new research by Kalina Michalska, assistant professor of psychology at the University of California, Riverside, we now know that anxious children tend to avoid making eye contact, and this has consequences for how they experience fear. The shorter and less frequently they look at the eyes of others, the more likely they are to be afraid of them, even when there may be no reason to be.
One of the most striking findings in psychology is that almost all cognitive abilities are positively related, which allows researchers to summarize people's skills on a wide range of domains as one factor, known as 'g' or 'general intelligence.' Despite this, the mechanisms underlying 'g' remain somewhat mysterious. In a new study, scientists from Cambridge, London, and Berlin use longitudinal data to directly compare different proposed explanations for the phenomenon of 'g.'
Chimpanzees of all ages and all sexes can learn the simple circular relationship between the three different hand signals used in the well-known game rock-paper-scissors. Jie Gao of Kyoto University in Japan and Peking University in China is lead author of a study in the journal Primates, which is the official journal of the Japan Monkey Centre, and is published by Springer.
For babies every moment is a new experience -- until the infant brain organises the flood of stimulations. It has to save new information in its long-term memory, aggregate similar experiences and categorise them. Therefore, one thing seems to be crucial: sufficient sleep. Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences have now discovered that babies can even associate them with meanings the first time -- much earlier than supposed.
A new study from the University of Pennsylvania shows the pitfalls of helicopter parenting -- in dogs. Researchers showed that doting mothers seem to handicap their puppies, in this case reducing the likelihood of successfully completing a training program to become guide dogs.
A University of Oklahoma professor, Edward T. Cokely, shows that informed decision making depends on the ability to accurately evaluate and understand information about risk in a newly published study in the scientific journal Human Factors. A state-of-the-science review of the literature concludes that visual aids are beneficial for diverse people with different levels of numeracy and graph literacy. Cokely identifies five categories of practical, evidence-based guidelines for the evaluation and design of visual aids.
UCLA researchers have discovered that children with autism have a tell-tale difference on brain tests compared with other children. Specifically, the researchers found that the lower a child's peak alpha frequency -- a number reflecting the frequency of certain brain waves -- the lower their non-verbal IQ was. This is the first study to highlight peak alpha frequency as a promising biomarker.
Just as athletes cross-train to improve physical skills, those wanting to enhance cognitive skills can benefit from multiple ways of exercising the brain, according to a comprehensive new study. The 18-week study of 318 healthy young adults found that combining physical exercise and mild electric brain stimulation with computer-based cognitive training promoted skill learning significantly more than using cognitive training alone. The enhanced learning was skill-specific and did not translate to general intelligence.
New research from Washington University in St. Louis suggests that children as young as 3 already are beginning to recognize and follow important rules and patterns governing how letters in the English language fit together to make words.
The commercial brain-training program Lumosity has no effect on decision-making or brain activity in young adults, according to a randomized, controlled trial published in The Journal of Neuroscience.