How are Tool Use and Speech Processing Related?

Posted by & filed under Genetics: The Biological Context of Development, Language Development, Language-Thought, Learning, Motivation-Emotion, Neuroscience.

Description: Ok here is a question. What do tool use and spoken language syntax have in common? No idea? I do not blame you. What if I provided you with a hint (a bit of data) suggesting that the two are correlated AND that training in one of them (tool use OR processing complex spoken… Read more »

Campfires Are in Your Genes

Posted by & filed under Altruism Prosocial Behaviour, Cultural Variation, Genetics: The Biological Context of Development, Group Processes, Health Psychology, Intergroup Relations, Neuroscience, Stress: Coping Reducing, Student Success.

Description: What does sitting around a campfire with friends do for you? Yes, it can keep you warm, it can give you something to do after dark when camping with minimal artificial light, it can give you a chance to exchange scary stories but what can it also do for your physical and possibly mental… Read more »

Transgenerational Neural Impact of Early Neglect

Posted by & filed under Anxiety OC PTSD, Child Development, Clinical Health Psychology, Clinical Neuropsychology, Families and Peers, Genetics: The Biological Context of Development, Human Development, Neuroscience, Sensory-Perceptual Development, Stress, Stress Biopsychosocial Factors Illness, Stress Coping - Health, Stress: Coping Reducing.

Description: You have likely heard about the research looking at the longer term imp0acts of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE’s) on later development and functioning as children grow into adulthood. In has supported and spurred on an ongoing push for early intervention with at-risk families in an effort to minimize the existence of or to mitigate… Read more »

What is Your Brain For? Maybe NOT for Thinking!

Posted by & filed under Anxiety OC PTSD, Clinical Neuropsychology, Consciousness, Genetics: The Biological Context of Development, Language-Thought, mental illness, Neuroscience, Physiology, Psychological Health, Stress, Stress Coping - Health.

Description: When you experience a flair of stress or anxiety what is your first thought? I suspect it is some version of “What is going on in my world that is stressful or challenging”. Especially these days with a raging pandemic, that is not a bad first thought as it can lead to problem focused… Read more »

Creeped by Halloween Stuff? It is In Your Genes!

Posted by & filed under Anxiety OC PTSD, Child Development, Consciousness, Cultural Variation, Genetics: The Biological Context of Development, Human Development, Learning, Motivation-Emotion, Stress Coping - Health, Stress: Coping Reducing.

Description: As I write this it is October 31 and thus Halloween in a very different social space and time than previous All Hallows Eves. I am not going to try and make a case for how hard it will be for children to survive without their annua blast of cheap treats (they will be… Read more »

Increasing Complex Cases for Genetic Counselors

Posted by & filed under Classification Diagnosis, Clinical Assessment, Clinical Psychology, Genetics: The Biological Context of Development, Legal Ethical Issues, Neuroscience, Psychological Disorders, Treatment of Psychological Disorders.

Description: Read the title of the article referenced under the picture below that the link further down will take you to. How would you answer that question (and yes, I realize you likely want more information before responding)? When I talk in class about genetic testing and pre-natal screening, I point out that with the… Read more »

Did Language Evolution Hijack Complex Tool Making Skills?

Posted by & filed under General Psychology, Genetics: The Biological Context of Development, Language Development, Language-Thought, Neuroscience.

Description: The nature of our spoken communication skills is most certainly a big part of our adaptive evolutionary advantage as a species. Using language, we can break out of the ‘here and now’ and discuss past events and future possibilities and we can organize and coordinate complex individual and social tasks and strategies using our… Read more »

Left-handedness: A Good Way to Look at NatureNurture

Posted by & filed under Cultural Variation, Genetics: The Biological Context of Development, Human Development, Neuroscience, Physiology.

Description: There are fewer left-handed people than right-handed people in the world, right? Yes, that is true, but the proportions vary from place to place and maybe from time to time. So, how does handedness play out from an evolutionary perspective? It is often difficult to think through how the interaction of nature (genetics) and… Read more »

Evolution AND Learning = Epigenesis and Revolution?

Posted by & filed under Cultural Variation, Genetics: The Biological Context of Development, Human Development.

Description: Think about this question: What does it mean to say that a trait or a behavioral tendency is genetic and what does it mean to say that particular trait or behavior is acquired through observation, teaching, or learning. Now with your answers to the various parts of that question in mind consider this research… Read more »