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Cognitive Psychology
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Cognitive Processes [electronic resource]

Explores the higher mental processes, including reasoning, planning and problem solving. Also considers why the cognitive revolution is attracting such diverse investigators from philosophers to computer scientists. Includes commentary by Dr. Howard Gardner of Harvard University and Dr. Michael Posner of the University of Oregon.

The Mind Hidden and Divided [electronic resource]

Examines how events and experiences of the subconscious affect moods, actions, and health. Includes case studies of multiple personality and split-brain patients and demonstrations of hypnosis. Includes commentary by Dr. Jonathan Schooler of the University of Pittsburgh and Dr. Michael Gazzaniga of Dartmouth College.

IQ [electronic resource]: A History of Deceit

What we now call an IQ test was originally developed by Alfred Binet at the start of the 20th century as a way to measure developmental delays in schoolchildren. But with the eugenics craze at its peak, Binet's concept was soon appropriated and exploited by those who wished to guarantee the ethnic purity of their society. This program looks at the history of IQ assessment, from Ellis Island evaluations to William Shockley's racist declarations in the 1970s, and reveals how social policies were influenced by the idea that intelligence is set at birth. In addition, Charles Murray, co-author of The Bell Curve: Intelligence and Class Structure in American Life, defends his views.

TEDTalks [electronic resource]: Daniel Goldstein - the Battle Between Your Present and Future Self

Every day, we make decisions that have good or bad consequences for our future selves.

TEDTalks [electronic resource]: Sheena Iyengar - How to Make Choosing Easier

We all want customized experiences and products-but when faced with hundreds of options, consumers freeze up. With fascinating new research, Sheena Iyengar demonstrates in this TEDTalk how businesses (and others) can improve the experience of choosing.

TEDTalks [electronic resource]: Baba Shiv - Sometimes It's Good to Give Up the Driver's Seat

Over the years, research has shown a counterintuitive fact about human nature: that sometimes, having too much choice makes us less happy. This may even be true when it comes to medical treatment. In this TEDTalk, Baba Shiv shares a fascinating study that measures why choice opens the door to doubt, and suggests that ceding control-especially on life-or-death decisions-may be the best thing for us.

Psychometric Testing and Employment [electronic resource]

Psychometric testing, used to assess a candidate's psychological and cognitive suitability for a particular job, is a key stage in the recruitment process for many employers. This interview-led program explains what psychometric testing is and why it's used, the various types of psychometric tests job candidates might encounter, how to prepare for the tests, and the advantages and disadvantages of psychometric testing. Viewers gain insight into psychometric testing from the perspectives of human resources, clinical psychology, and career advice professionals. Produced in Australia.

Early Childhood Cognitive Development [electronic resource]: Weighing the Evidence

Does early brain stimulation really build a better baby? ABC News correspondent Chris Bury takes a balanced look at the Barney-or-Bach controversy with John Bruer, author of The Myth of the First Three Years, on one side and renowned child psychoanalyst Dr. Stanley Greenspan and Don Campbell, author of The Mozart Effect, on the other. Guest anchor Cokie Roberts then leads a thoughtful discussion on the subject between Harvard Medical School's Alvin Poussaint; Ellen Galinsky, co-founder of the Families and Work Institute and author of Ask the Children; and Danielle Crittenden, author of What Our Mothers Didn't Tell Us.

Lending a Hand [electronic resource]: Sign Languages and the Deaf

Complex and highly sophisticated, sign languages have proved excellent tools for analyzing the foundation of human language capability. In this program, Dr. Jonathan Miller weaves together the history of sign languages for the Deaf with insights into the natural synergy between language, vision, and dexterity to support his conviction that there is a common mental structure underlying all languages, regardless of their outward expression. Along the way, Dr. Miller skewers a number of enduring misconceptions-for example, that sign languages are purely iconic and therefore incapable of conveying abstract ideas.

Dyslexia [electronic resource]: Diagnosis and Treatment

Difficulty with reading and spelling is not necessarily dyslexia. This program explains what dyslexia means and the many ways in which it is manifested; the extensive testing necessary; beyond how the subject reads and spells and what kind of error he or she makes; to make a diagnosis of dyslexia; and the role of heredity. Treatment builds on the student's strengths while focusing on his or her weaknesses and may involve neurological, psychological, or neuropsychological aspects, as well as individually-adapted language, auditive, and reading and spelling training programs; examples are given. Dutch dialogue with English narration.

Doing What Comes Naturally [electronic resource]: Childhood Language Acquisition

Born with no apparent knowledge of language, humans generally attain a basic mastery of their mother tongue in the course of only a few years. How do they do it? In this program, Dr. Jonathan Miller builds a case for Noam Chomsky's theory of a universal grammar and deflates misconceptions about childhood language acquisition while raising some very intriguing questions of his own. Dr. Miller's systematic investigation of a child's structured capability for acquiring language and the elaborate social supports that facilitate language acquisition results in a clear and engaging exposition of a captivating topic.

TEDTalks [electronic resource]: Elizabeth Gilbert - a Different Way to Think About Creative Genius

Elizabeth Gilbert faced a pre-midlife crisis by doing what we all secretly dream of - running off for a year. Her travels through Italy, India, and Indonesia resulted in the best-selling and deeply beloved memoir Eat, Pray, Love about her process of finding herself by leaving home. Gilbert is a longtime magazine writer - covering music and politics for Spin and GQ - as well as a novelist and short-story writer. In this funny, personal, and surprisingly moving TEDTalk, Gilbert muses on the impossible things we expect from artists and geniuses and shares the radical idea that instead of the rare person being a genius, all of us have a genius.

TEDTalks [electronic resource]: Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi - Creativity, Fulfillment, and Flow

When we are involved in [creativity], we feel that we are living more fully than during the rest of life." Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi has contributed pioneering work to our understanding of happiness, creativity, human fulfillment and the notion of "flow" - a state of heightened focus and immersion in activities such as art, play, and work. A leading researcher in positive psychology, Csikszentmihalyi has based his study on human strengths such as optimism, motivation, and responsibility. Called "a man obsessed by happiness" by Richard Flaste of The New York Times, Csikszentmihalyi notes that money cannot buy happiness and looks to those who find pleasure and lasting satisfaction in activities that bring about a state of "flow" in this fascinating TEDTalk.

TEDTalks [electronic resource]: Rory Sutherland - Life Lessons From an Ad Man

Advertising adds value to a product by altering the way the public thinks about that product, not by changing the product itself. In this TEDTalk, advertising guru Rory Sutherland makes the daring assertion that how we perceive an object's worth can be just as satisfying as its actual, material worth - think of the popularity of tattered, faded jeans - and his conclusions have interesting consequences for how we look at life. As vice chairman of Ogilvy Group, Sutherland has played an integral role in cutting-edge, interactive campaigns that blur the line between ad and entertainment.

TEDTalks [electronic resource]: Eric Berlow - How Complexity Leads to Simplicity

Ecologist Eric Berlow doesn't feel overwhelmed when faced with complex systems. He knows that more information can lead to a better, simpler solution. Illustrating the tips and tricks for breaking down big issues, he distills an overwhelming infographic on U.S. strategy in Afghanistan to a few elementary points.

TEDTalks [electronic resource]: David Brooks - the Social Animal

Tapping into the findings of his latest book, New York Times columnist David Brooks unpacks new insights into human nature from the cognitive sciences - insights with massive implications for economics and politics as well as our own self-knowledge. In a talk full of humor, he shows how you can't hope to understand humans as separate individuals making choices based on their conscious awareness.

TEDTalks [electronic resource]: Patricia Kuhl - the Linguistic Genius of Babies

At TEDxRainier, Patricia Kuhl shares astonishing findings about how babies learn one language over another: by listening to the humans around them and "taking statistics" on the sounds they need to know. Clever lab experiments (and brain scans) show how 6-month-old babies use sophisticated reasoning to understand their world.

Just Trial and Error [electronic resource]: Conversations on Consciousness

An exhibition about consciousness and the human brain at University College London inspired the making of Just Trial and Error, in which cognitive neuroscientist Brian Butterworth, perceptual neuroscientist Beau Lotto, sculptor Antony Gormley, and Twain Luu, an Internet entrepreneur well-known for her study of the "global brain," explore the meaning of consciousness as it is understood in their respective fields. Over the course of the film, they offer insights into the human brain, perception, the space art occupies, the role of the Internet, global consciousness, and much more. A provocative multidisciplinary documentary that is, in the words of New Scientist magazine, "a meditation on consciousness in today's society and the overwhelming sense that we need to place greater value o [...]

Fragments of Genius [electronic resource]: Understanding Savants

By any standard, Derek Paravacini is an exceptional pianist. Stephen Wiltshire can draw whole cityscapes from memory with uncanny accuracy. Both are savants with severe learning disabilities due to autism. Focusing on these two case studies, this program looks at how a disability sometimes unlocks extraordinary abilities, as well as how research on savants has led to a better understanding of brain function. Allan Snyder, professor of science and the mind at the University of Sydney, discusses several theories of savant skills, while Dr. Bruce Miller shares his work on dementia which led him to identify a region of the brain that when damaged produces savant behavior.
2006; 2000

Talking [electronic resource]

For the newborn, the notion of coexistence-that there are others in their world with whom they can communicate-begins with crying. In this program, researchers and other experts join with parents to discuss the steps children go through in mastering their mother tongue. Topics include the process of cognition, a baby's ability to make use of body language and semiotic gestures, babbling as a precursor to language acquisition, timeframes for learning to speak, and growing up in a multilingual home.
2006; 1999