Thank you to Catherine at Women 4 hope who listed No Harm in her five new blogs for Blog Day which I missed hearing about entirely due to my complete self absorption at this time of year. Classes started last week – earlier every year it seems – and I start teaching this week. My blogging here has been slim while I’ve been prepping the course material. I’m really hoping to steer some of the students towards a health-psych project since it’s a field which is gaining popularity, it’s a new program in my department, and it is truly interesting. There’s even been some high profile news stories in this general area, such as the report on the study of implicit bias effects in doctors’ treatment recommendations for chest pain patients in the ER.

There’s only so much you can cover in a short intro research course, which means most of the really interesting stuff is out. Still, the last time I taught it I had a group of young women who did a very nice project on students’ attitudes towards mental illness and the effects of positive or negative portrayals of mental illness (and the mentally ill) in the media. Theirs was the best design and had some lovely, interpretable, and interesting results. It’s always gratifying to see the students pull off something like that given the constraints of the course (which are considerable, believe me).

On the bright side, at least this year I was reminded in time to celebrate Talk Like a Pirate Day on September 19th (thanks to Bubblewench).

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