Professor Geoff Beattie has just become a Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine. The society was established in 1805 as the Medical and Chirurgical Society of London. A number of psychologists have been Fellows of the Society including the late Glyn Humphreys who was Professor of Experimental Psychology at Oxford and the President of the British Psychological Society, Professor Jamie Hacker-Hughes. Honorary Fellows have included Charles Darwin, Louis Pasteur, Edward Jenner and Sigmund Freud.
Research undertaken in the Department of Psychology at Edge Hill University, in collaboration with colleagues at Australian Catholic University has revealed new insight into the psychology of online emoticon usage, The research by Dr Helen Wall and Dr Linda Kaye explored why we use emoticons but more importantly, how this varies across different virtual environments. Their findings revealed a number of important themes surrounding emoticon usage, in respect of serving a function both for the sender and receiver of text-based messages on platforms such as Facebook, SMS messages and email. However, they also identified that other contextual factors played a role in determining whether or not we use emoticons, suggesting that emoticon usage, as a form of emotional expression may operate differently from traditional face-to-face emotional communication. Their findings have just been published in the journal Computers in Human Behavior and can be found here.
Professor Geoff Beattie recently did an interview with Dr Carlos Vazquez, the host of the new U.S. based daily 2 hour news talk show- Therapycable Live! which explores the many facets of human behavior such as “the mind of an athlete”, “what is consciousness ?”, “Psychology of a dictator”, “The mind of a terrorist”, and many more. Previous guests have included a number of key political and professional figures. For example, linguist, political activist and Professor at MIT Noam Chomsky; Michael Dukakis, former governor of Massachusetts and former Democratic Presidential Candidate; Walter E. Williams, Professor of Economics at George Mason University; Robert Trivers, Evolutionary Biologist at Rutgers University; Sir Lawrence Freedman, Professor of War Studies at King’s College London; Linda J. Bilmes, Professor at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government and former assistant secretary and chief financial officer of the U.S. Department of Commerce and John Casey, Former White House NASA policy advisor. Professor Beattie was interviewed on the subject of unconscious prejudice.
Recent research in the Department of Psychology has found that when presented with a stereotype about gender and gaming, female players perform worse on a gaming task than those who are not given this information. These were the findings of Dr Linda Kaye and Charlotte Pennington, in their experiments to test these effects. Most noteworthy, when female players were given additional information which distracted from their threatened gender identity, they appeared to be protected against this performance detriment. The findings suggest that gender stereotypes are indeed harmful in digital gaming contexts, but that psychology can hold the key on strategies on how to alleviate these effects. The research has just been published in Computers in Human Behavior and can be found here.