The Importance of Routine
5 benefits of good habits in the time of online learning

Travis Dixon Developmental Psychology, General Interest, Health Psychology 2 Comments

One of the biggest challenges we’re facing right now is the disruption to our normal routines. With schools closing and moving to online learning, it’s very easy to get into bad habits. My goal as an online teacher at the moment is to offer meaningful work and help my students maintain good routines. The biggest challenge for students is to …

Feeling stressed? Here’s how you can cope.

Travis Dixon Assessment (IB), General Interest Leave a Comment

It’s a stressful time for everyone. The latest news that the IB has cancelled exams will be causing massive amounts of stress for many students (and teachers). Here are some ways you can cope.  Stress is caused by things happening to us (stressors) and how we think about those things (appraisals). In psychology jargon, we call this top-down or bottom-up …

Can perceptual illusions teach us tolerance?

Travis Dixon General Interest 1 Comment

Warning: This post is me rambling and thinking out-loud. “I don’t know how on Earth you can see a black and blue dress, when that’s clearly white and gold.” “Are you mad. What? What? You’re messing with me, right? They’re definitely grey and blue sneakers. Where the heck are you seeing pink and white?” These were some of the things …

To prove or not to prove, that is the question.

Travis Dixon Assessment (IB), General Interest Leave a Comment

This is a follow-up to the popular post, “why we rarely use the word ‘prove’ in psychology.” In their first months of studying psychology students love to use the word “prove” when explaining studies. This drives teachers and examiners nuts! But instead of making a blanket rule in class like “you’re never to use the word prove!” I like to …

Why teach themantically?

Travis Dixon Assessment (IB), Criminology, Curriculum, General Interest, Themantics Leave a Comment

Why teach thematically? If you think about it, teaching by the core approaches (or levels of analysis) in a linear way IS a thematic approach – the themes are biology, cognition and socio-culture, and then the themes are abnormal psych, health, etc. These themes tie together topics so by the end of the unit students have a broad conceptual understanding. …

The Story of Phineas Gage

Travis Dixon Biological Psychology, Criminology, General Interest Leave a Comment

Important Note: Phineas Gage is an interesting way to learn about the relationship between the frontal lobe and our behaviour. However, there are many other studies that we use in this course to demonstrate important concepts like localization of brain function. Therefore, Gage should not be used in exam answers. The story… Phineas Gage was a railroad worker who was …

So you want to assess ecological validity?

Travis Dixon Assessment (IB), General Interest, Revision and Exam Preparation 11 Comments

If you’re reading this it’s probably because your teacher has sent you here after reading something in your essay along the lines of, “this experiment was a laboratory experiment and so it lacks ecological validity.” This throwaway sentence makes teachers and examiners groan (and not award you any marks, just so you know). So I’m here to help show you how to …

Tip for Cutting Content #3: Identities, Attitudes and Behaviours

Travis Dixon Curriculum, General Interest, Social and Cultural Psychology 8 Comments

Seeing as my last post about dealing with the cognitive extensions seemed to help, I thought I’d share this one. For some reason that I’m not too sure of, the new guide has got a trifecta of effects of cultural influences in the third topic: identities, attitudes and behaviours. On the surface this appears to be somewhat of a problem. …

C.H.A.C.E.R: The Themantic Lesson Plan

Travis Dixon Assessment (IB), Curriculum, General Interest, Themantics Leave a Comment

Our goal at TE is to make teachers lives better by making them simpler. Do less and do it better, getting back to basics, yadda, yadda. If we can help you reduce stress, it will have positive impacts on your kids (see this article about the correlation between teacher burnout and cortisol in students). Get all your lesson plans and …