Committee Room 2, Hendon Town Hall, Middlesex University, London, NW4 4BT
'Why I don’t believe anything in psychology'
A century ago, unknown to humankind, the Daemons came to Earth and bestowed upon us the power to investigate ourselves. It was called NHST. They told us it stood for Null Hypothesis Significance Testing. Having given us this power, they have watched us use it to discover things about the human mind. Now they have returned to use this knowledge to destroy us. Our only hope is if I can convince them that all psychological knowledge to date is in fact likely to be wrong.
This talk describes my attempt to do this by looking at flaws in NHST, gaps in researchers' knowledge about NHST, the way that psychologists probably mis-apply statistical methods, how psychology research follows a pattern likely to make it untrue, and how the incentive structures in academia promote unhelpful attitudes to knowledge. I don’t plan to offer any solutions, just a litany of misery. We’ll need a stiff drink afterwards.
'Learning fear from observing others'
Self-report studies and experiments with animals and adults suggest that fear of a stimulus can be learned vicariously by observing someone else with that fear. However, until relatively recently there was little experimental evidence that this process occurs in people at an age when fears and phobias are known to develop.
This talk will outline an experimental paradigm demonstrating that fears can be vicariously learned during childhood and that, like Pavlovian conditioning, this type of learning is underpinned by associative learning processes. I will also discuss how the procedure has been used to investigate fear prevention and reversal interventions/mechanisms.
Everybody welcome - there is no need to book in advance.