Synopsis

Leading science journalists provide a weekly one-minute commentary on the latest developments in the science of brain and behavior. For a full-length, weekly podcast you can subscribe to Science Talk: The Podcast of Scientific American . To view all our archived podcasts please visit: www.scientificamerican.com/podcast

Episodes

  • Up Your Online Dating Game with Evidence-Based Strategies

    Up Your Online Dating Game with Evidence-Based Strategies

    14/02/2015 Duration: 01min

    Choosing a user name starting with a letter appearing earlier in the alphabet is just one scientifically vetted way to increase the odds of turning an online encounter into a first date. Christopher Intagliata reports

  • Junk Diet Rewires Rat Brains

    Junk Diet Rewires Rat Brains

    07/02/2015 Duration: 01min

    High-calorie and exceedingly pleasurable foods appear to change rat brain rewards circuitry, causing the rodents to continue to seek such fare. Erika Beras reports

  • High Price Tag on Meds May Boost Healing

    High Price Tag on Meds May Boost Healing

    31/01/2015 Duration: 01min

    Parkinson’s patients derived more benefits from a salt solution they were told was an expensive drug than from the same solution when it was described as being cheap medication. Karen Hopkin reports

  • Publication Bias May Boost Findings for Bilingual Brain Benefits

    Publication Bias May Boost Findings for Bilingual Brain Benefits

    31/12/2014 Duration: 01min

    Of studies presented at conferences, those that found a cognitive benefit to bilingualism were almost twice as likely to get published in journals as were studies finding no benefit. Karen Hopkin reports  

  • Inclusion Illusion Lessens Racial Bias

    Inclusion Illusion Lessens Racial Bias

    20/12/2014 Duration: 01min

    Implicit bias against another race lessened after volunteers experienced themselves via virtual reality as a member of that race. Karen Hopkin reports  

  • Blood Test Forecasts Concussion Severity

    Blood Test Forecasts Concussion Severity

    16/12/2014 Duration: 01min

    Levels of a protein fragment in the blood paralleled how long head injuries benched hockey players. Ingrid Wickelgren reports

  • Bouncy Gait Improves Mood

    Bouncy Gait Improves Mood

    08/12/2014 Duration: 01min

    If you're in an up mood, you may walk more energetically. But a study finds that purposefully walking more energetically may improve your mood. Christie Nicholson reports  

  • Synchronized Walking Reduces Opponents Perceived Size

    Synchronized Walking Reduces Opponent's Perceived Size

    09/11/2014 Duration: 01min

    Subjects who kept pace with a walking colleague estimated a potential enemy to be smaller and lighter than did other walkers who were not marching. Karen Hopkin reports  

  • Big Parental Control May Stunt Kid Assertiveness

    Big Parental Control May Stunt Kid Assertiveness

    03/11/2014 Duration: 01min

    Young adults who’d had highly controlling parents were less able to stress their own viewpoints to a friend or partner in confident and productive ways. Daisy Yuhas reports  

  • Lots or Little Sleep Linked to Sick Days

    Lots or Little Sleep Linked to Sick Days

    29/09/2014 Duration: 01min

    Absence from work due to illness increased dramatically for those who slept less than six hours or more than nine hours per night. Christie Nicholson reports  

  • Can’t Take My Eyes off You—Your Face, That Is

    Can’t Take My Eyes off You—Your Face, That Is

    06/09/2014 Duration: 01min

    The direction of your gaze when looking at someone offers an unconscious, automatic giveaway of whether your initial reaction is romance or sex. Christie Nicholson reports

  • Talking to Strangers Makes You Happy

    Talking to Strangers Makes You Happy

    30/08/2014 Duration: 01min

    People who had to strike up conversations on a subway later reported feeling happier than those who didn’t. Christie Nicholson reports.

  • People Think Experiences Bring Happiness, Still Opt for Things

    People Think Experiences Bring Happiness, Still Opt for Things

    24/08/2014 Duration: 01min

    Survey subjects rated life experiences as making them happier and as a better use of money than buying objects. But they actually spent their cash on material goods, whose value is more easily quantifiable. Erika Beras reports

  • Childhood Stress Decreases Size of Brain Regions

    Childhood Stress Decreases Size of Brain Regions

    16/08/2014 Duration: 01min

    Children who experience neglect, abuse and/or poverty can have smaller amygdalas and hippocampuses, brain regions involved in emotion and memory, compared with kids raised in nurturing environments. Christie Nicholson reports  

  • Even Monkeys Believe In Hot Streaks

    Even Monkeys Believe In Hot Streaks

    12/08/2014 Duration: 01min

    Monkeys trained to play fixed video games made moves indicating that they expected certain patterns to occur. Erika Beras reports  

  • Brain State Bread Crumbs Lead Way Back to Consciousness

    Brain State Bread Crumbs Lead Way Back to Consciousness

    29/07/2014 Duration: 01min

    Researchers studying anesthetized rats discovered a handful of activity patterns that may mark the path to consciousness after anesthesia. Karen Hopkin reports  

  • Bodys Pain Perception Mapped for First Time

    Body's Pain Perception Mapped for First Time

    23/06/2014 Duration: 01min

    Our ability to pinpoint pain varies across the body, and in a specific pattern. Christie Nicholson reports  

  • Vision Involves a Bit of Hearing, Too

    Vision Involves a Bit of Hearing, Too

    02/06/2014 Duration: 01min

    Researchers could tell what sounds blindfolded volunters were hearing by analyzing activity in their visual cortexes. Christie Nicholson reports  

  • Parents Who Support Corporal Punishment Do It a Lot

    Parents Who Support Corporal Punishment Do It a Lot

    22/05/2014 Duration: 01min

    Thirty-three families allowed themselves to be recorded for up to six nights. Parents who said they supported corporal punishment did it often and with little provocation. Christie Nicholson reports  

  • Extroversion Extends Benefits across Cultures

    Extroversion Extends Benefits across Cultures

    14/05/2014 Duration: 01min

    In a study covering five different countries, subjects reported feeling best on the days when they practiced what are considered extroverted actions. Christie Nicholson reports  

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