It’s a question most attorneys wish they could answer: How and why do judges and juries arrive at their decisions? The answer, according to Joshua ...
A new study suggests that many of the cognitive capacities that humans use for cooking — a preference for cooked food, the ability to understand the transformation of raw food into cooked, and even the ability to save and transport food to cook it — are shared with chimpanzees.
While at Harvard, Veronica Gloria ’15 worked to empower first-generation and Latino students like herself.
A new study examines how different kinds of shared beliefs can affect how people cooperate, and how people use common knowledge, a type of shared understanding, to coordinate their actions.
A new study by Harvard scientists suggests that, from a young age, children are biased in favor of their own social groups when they intervene in what they believe are unfair situations. But as they get older, they can learn to become more impartial.
Interview with Professor Steven Pinker as part of the Experience series.
New research conducted at Harvard demonstrates sharing behavior in African grey parrots.
Female academics are less likely to collaborate across rank, a Harvard study found.
With the approach of Valentine’s Day, Harvard experts discuss expectations and students reveal their plans.
Though it has been embraced by everyone from advocates for arts education to parents hoping to encourage their kids to stick with piano lessons, two new studies conducted by Harvard researchers show no effect of music training on the cognitive abilities of young children.
Irene Pepperberg, best known for her work with an African grey parrot named Alex — whose intelligence was estimated as equal to that of a 6-year-old child — recently relocated her lab to Harvard, where she continues to explore the origins of intelligence by working with birds.
New studies co-authored by Harvard Business School Professor Francesca Gino find that, contrary to decades of accepted wisdom, cheating feels good.
Using scans of the brain, Harvard researchers show that patterns of neural activity change when people look at black and white faces, and male and female faces.
Research by scientists in Elizabeth Spelke’s lab suggests our innate understanding of abstract geometry has origins in the evolutionary past.
The National Science Foundation is awarding grants to create three new science and technology centers this year, with two of them based in Cambridge. The two multi-institutional grants total $45 million over five years.
Psychology Professor Mahzarin Banaji gave incoming members of Harvard’s Class of 2017 a tour of their own biases, helping to raise awareness that can help them avoid making decisions based on unconscious preferences.
Daniel M. Wegner, a pioneering social psychologist who helped to reveal the mysteries of human experience through his work on thought suppression, conscious will, and mind perception, died July 5 at age 65.
H. Stephen Leff, an assistant professor of clinical psychology in the Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, has received the Carl Taube Award from the American Public Health Association.
In a new paper, Professor of Psychology Richard McNally and graduate student Don Robinaugh say that while people suffering from complicated grief — a syndrome marked by intense, debilitating emotional distress and yearning for a lost loved one — had difficulty envisioning specific events in their future, those problems disappeared when they were asked to imagine an alternate future that included their lost loved one.
In research described earlier this year in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, Elinor Amit, a College Fellow in psychology, along with two collaborators, Cheryl Wakslak and Yaacov Trope, showed that people increasingly prefer to communicate verbally (versus visually) with people who are distant (versus close) — socially, geographically, or temporally.
By interspersing online lectures with short tests, student mind-wandering decreased by half, note-taking tripled, and overall retention of the material improved, said Daniel Schacter, the William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of Psychology, and Karl Szpunar, a postdoctoral fellow in psychology.
Professor of Psychology Matthew Nock is the author of a new paper, co-authored with other Harvard faculty, which examines suicidal thoughts and behaviors among adolescents. In a recent conversation with the Gazette, Nock discussed his research, and the resources available at Harvard for students and others in the community.
Harvard psychologist Mahzarin Banaji and longtime collaborator Anthony Greenwald condense three decades of work on the unconscious mind in “Blindspot: Hidden Biases of Good People.”
A neurologist who teaches at Harvard Medical School ponders love and its complexities in his latest book, “What to Read on Love, Not Sex: Freud, Fiction, and the Articulation of Truth in Modern Psychological Science.”
At a Meeting of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences on November 6, 2012, the Minute honoring the life and service of the late William Kaye Estes, Daniel and Amy Starch Professor of Psychology, Emeritus, was placed upon the records. Professor Estes made pioneering contributions to many cognitive domains over a period spanning more than a half century.
In a series of experiments, Harvard researchers found that people who make quick decisions act less selfishly than those who deliberate.
A new Harvard study suggests that children as young as 3 consider merit — a key part of more-advanced ideas of fairness — when distributing resources.
A team of researchers from Harvard and Wellesley College shows that data gathered from online volunteers can be just as good as data collected in the lab.
A study conducted by Professor of Psychology Richard J. McNally and colleagues from the University of Groningen and the University of Amsterdam is casting doubt on the “amnesia barrier” that has long been a hallmark of multiple personality disorder, now called dissociative identity disorder, by demonstrating that patients have knowledge of their other identities.
In a paper published in Neuron, Joshua Buckholtz and co-author Andreas Meyer-Lindenberg identify a biological reason for why many mental disorders share similar symptoms, a situation that makes diagnosis challenging.
Two of Harvard’s leading social scientists discussed the way that humans make decisions, and whether having more choices really makes us happier.
Dozens of Harvard faculty and students gathered at Emerson Hall on Feb. 23 to ponder the nature of perception with Ned Block, the Silver Professor of Philosophy, Psychology and Neural Science at New York University (NYU) and one of the country’s leading thinkers on consciousness. Block's lecture, “How Empirical Facts about Attention Transform Traditional Philosophical Debates about the Nature of Perception,” explored prevailing notions of perception by looking at how we see and pay attention to objects we encounter.
When faced with a tough choice, we already have the cognitive tools we need to make the right decision, Daniel Gilbert, professor of psychology, told a Harvard Law School audience on Feb. 16. The hard part is overcoming the tricks our minds play on us that render rational decision-making nearly impossible.
In his latest book, psychologist and linguist Steven Pinker cites data to show that the world is becoming far more peaceful than you might have thought.
Mahzarin R. Banaji Richard Clarke Cabot Professor of Social Ethics, Faculty of Arts and Sciences
Steven Pinker Johnstone Family Professor of Psychology Harvard College Professor
Three Harvard faculty members — Roland Fryer Jr., Robert M. Beren Professor of Economics; Markus Greiner, associate professor of physics; and Matthew K. Nock, professor of psychology — are among the recipients of this year’s MacArthur Foundation fellowships, also know as “genius” grants.
In this important book, Douglas H. Powell, a clinical instructor in psychology, discusses lifestyle habits and attitudes linked to cognitive aging, and provides evidence-based strategies to minimize mental decline.
"The Young Ones," a BBC series filmed with Harvard Professor of Psychology Ellen Langer, which replicates her Counterclockwise study using British celebrities, has been nominated for a British Academy of Film and Television Arts Award.
Just how much should we allow “human nature” to guide our politics — and our everyday decision making? Columnist David Brooks and a trio of Harvard analysts debated new findings on the unconscious mind during a panel discussion.
Joshua Greene, Assistant Professor of Psychology
Study suggests our assumptions about natural talent can influence our judgments, overlooking and undervaluing the impact of hard work.
Shelley Carson, a researcher in the Psychology Department and lecturer at the Extension School, has penned a how-to book on harnessing your untapped abilities.
Richard McNally, a professor of psychology, explores the many contemporary attempts to define what mental disorder really is, and offers questions for patients and professionals alike to help understand and cope with the sorrows and psychopathologies of everyday life.
Psychologists at Harvard University have found that infants younger than a year old understand social dominance and use relative size to predict who will prevail when two individuals’ goals conflict.
Twelve from Harvard are among 214 researchers named NARSAD Young Investigators.
People’s ability to recognize and remember faces peaks at ages 30 to 34, about a decade later than most other mental abilities, a new study says.
We resolve to exercise more and eat healthy, and then reach for a cupcake at the office holiday party. We pledge to put money away for retirement, but end up maxing out credit cards that charge 14 percent interest. According to Professor David Laibson, the reason for these struggles is that human beings are of two minds, one patient and one impatient.
Researchers at Harvard-affiliated McLean Hospital have shown that those who start using marijuana at a young age are more impaired on tests of cognitive function than those who start smoking at a later age.
People spend 46.9 percent of their waking hours thinking about something other than what they’re doing, and this mind wandering typically makes them unhappy, according to research by Harvard psychologists Matthew A. Killingsworth and Daniel T. Gilbert.