How to evaluate any study in 3 simple steps

Travis Dixon Research Methodology, Revision and Exam Preparation, Studies and Theories Leave a Comment

Being able to critically evaluate a study is a key skill for any budding psychologist. However, like anything, when you’re first learning how to do this it can be very difficult. In this post, we look at 3 simple steps you can take to evaluate any study. Read More 7 exam tips for evaluating studies So you want to assess …

Key Studies for the IA
A list of good studies to replicate for the IB Psychology Internal Assessment.

Travis Dixon Internal Assessment (IB) 2 Comments

Remember that actually in the new IB Psych curriculum (first exams May 2019) the theory is actually more important than the study. In fact, you could even conduct the IA successfully without replicating a study but by designing your own experiment that tests a theory. However, it is strongly advised that you replicate an original study, simplify it (if necessary) to two conditions and …

MDMA and PTSD
How ecstacy (a serotonergic agonist) could help alleviate PTSD

Colin McElvenny Abnormal Psychology, Biological Psychology Leave a Comment

Ecstasy has been a popular party drug since the 1980s. The active ingredient,  MDMA (3,4-methylenedioxy-N-methylamphetamine), can cause feelings of euphoria, increased empathy, enhanced sensations (e.g.; touch, sight, and auditory) and a positive mindset. Due to being categorized by the US’ Drug Enforcement Agency as Schedule 1 which is described as,  “…substances, or chemicals…with no currently accepted medical use and a …

Agonists and Behaviour: Pramipexole
Dopamine agonists in the treatment of depression

Travis Dixon Abnormal Psychology, Biological Psychology Leave a Comment

An agonist is a chemical messenger that binds to the receptor sites of neurons and activates them to create a response. In this post, we’ll look at how the drug pramipexole is an agonist of the receptor sites for dopamine. Since dopamine has been linked to depression, we can also understand why this might be another option for treatment.  Depression …

How to solve the reproducibility crisis in Psychology

Travis Dixon Curriculum, Research Methodology Leave a Comment

The “reproducibility crisis” (or “replicability crisis”) is the term used to describe the recent discovery in psychology that many classic studies are failing to have their results reproduced. In fact, the whole of psychology, especially social psychology research, seems to be in a crisis regarding its credibility as a source of knowledge. Other fields like economics and the sciences are facing …

Posts You May Have Missed…

Travis Dixon Biological Psychology Leave a Comment

We’ve been doing some upgrading to our blog. In this time, you may not have been getting the email alerts of new posts. Here they are just in case. Synaptic Pruning and Neural Networks Synaptic pruning (aka neural pruning) helps the formation of neural networks. In this post we’ll look to understand the terms “synaptic pruning” and “neural networks.” We’ll …

Ketamine and PTSD
How an antagonist of glutamate may help treat PTSD

Travis Dixon Abnormal Psychology, Biological Psychology Leave a Comment

Agonists and antagonists are chemical messengers that affect the process of neurotransmission. They bind to specific receptor sites of neurotransmitters and this can affect brain function and behaviour. Ketamine is one antagonists of the receptor sites of the neurotransmitter, glutamate. In this post we’ll learn more about antagonists, how they work, how ketamine may help PTSD and a key study …

Ketamine: An antagonist used in the treatment of depression

Travis Dixon Abnormal Psychology, Biological Psychology Leave a Comment

Ketamine is the newest drug in the treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD). But how does it work? In this post, we’ll look at how ketamine is an antagonist of the neurotransmitter glutamate and why this can help fight depression. For years serotonin has been the main focus of causes and cures for depression. As low levels of serotonin and …

Synaptic Pruning and Neural Networks

Travis Dixon Biological Psychology Leave a Comment

Synaptic pruning (aka neural pruning)¹ helps the formation of neural networks. In this post we’ll look to understand the terms “synaptic pruning” and “neural networks.” We’ll also look at how synaptic pruning can help the formation of neural networks.  What is a “neural network?” A “neural network” is a series of connected neurons. Information travels along these networks that enable …

How to stop your IAs from losing marks
A step-by-step guide for annotating your IAs using PDF marking tools

Travis Dixon Teaching Ideas Leave a Comment

Have had your IAs lose marks after moderation? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. This post will give you a step-by-step guide on how to annotate your IAs so you won’t lose marks. For years my top IAs would all come down a few marks and my lowest ones would go up a couple. We are given IA feedback from moderators …