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Psychology

This category contains 109 posts

Context matters in climate change policy support

I tend to set up the courses I teach in ways that students aren’t always used to. I do this based on research about effective strategies and I talk to my students about that research and the reasons why I have chosen a particular approach. I find these conversations are really important because, like most … Continue reading

Years of good life

I’m very intrigued by the idea that we need measurements of well-being and success that go beyond income and GDP. Sure, I could have taken another contract and worked all weekend long but I’m in a position where I can choose to go kayaking instead and take care of my mental and physical health. I … Continue reading

Co-opting social values

Greenwashing is when a company makes false or unsubstantiated claims about how environmentally friendly a product is. They are frustrating because they can be hard to distinguish from true environmentally friendly products. But what about when companies make claims that tie themselves, or at least attempt to tie themselves to broader social values like a … Continue reading

Individual or Collective?

I’ve been thinking a lot recently about individual versus collective actions. When I worked in energy efficiency we often focused on individual actions as being a starting point towards sustainability. Part of the hope was that if an individual engaged in individual actions like installing a high energy furnace or not idling while they waited … Continue reading

Are Kids the Way to Increase Concern in All Adults?

When I first got into environmental education the idea that kids would share what they learned with their adults at home and influence their attitudes and decisions was common. A new study by Hartley et al (2021) examined whether kids could influence adults outside of their immediate family. To sum up, kids got the power. … Continue reading

To add or subtract, that is the question

A common excuse in education for not using active learning strategies in a course is that there isn’t enough time because of the amount of content that needs to be covered. This never sits well with me. I fully admit that I can’t cover everything and l make tradeoffs if I want to include something … Continue reading

Will a Face Mask Help With my Allergies?

This never would have even occurred to me to ask if it hadn’t been for the covid-19 pandemic, but since wearing face masks is a thing in North America now is there any chance they will improve my allergies? Dror et al (2020) found that nurses with chronic rhinitis including runny or plugged nose, sneezing, … Continue reading

Is simulated nature the same?

I’ve written before about the physical and psychological benefits of seeing and spending time in nature. Similarly, I’ve written about some of the barriers that people face in accessing natural settings. Which leads to the question of whether simulated nature has the same benefits as the real thing. Browning et al (2020) asked this question … Continue reading

Is anyone else talking to their animals?

Okay, so the other day a friend called me out for having conversations on Instagram between myself, my cats, and the service dog in-training I am currently raising (@tai.m42, @arielandtempest, and @dww_chico respectively). I’m definitely missing my social interaction at the moment and that is definitely manifesting itself as some conversations with my animals only … Continue reading

Wandering Brains

When I was a camp leader we used to joke that the secret to being a good leader was having a shorter attention span than the kids in the camp. I use a variation of this same philosophy in my teaching. I try to use a variety of different approaches to teaching and learning, and … Continue reading

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