Doctor Elliot Ludvig from Warwick’s Department of Psychology, with colleagues at Princeton and Brown Universities, came up with an experiment that displays that forming good, or bad, habits depends on how often an action is performed rather than how much satisfaction the action ensues. The researchers created a computer simulation, where digital rodents were given a choice of two levers, one of which was associated with the chance of getting a reward. The lever with the reward was labelled the ‘correct’ lever, and the lever without the reward was labelled the ‘wrong’ lever. The reward was swapped between the two levers, and the simulated rodents were then trained to pick the ‘correct’ lever. Doctor Elliot Ludvig, Associate Professor in the University of Warwick’s Department of Psychology and one of the paper’s authors, commented, “Much of what we do is driven by habits, yet how habits are learned and formed is still somewhat mysterious. Our work sheds new light on this question by building a mathematical model of how simple repetition can lead to the types of habits we see in people and other creatures. “
When the digital rodents were trained for a short period of time, they managed to pick the new, ‘correct’ lever when the lever with the reward changed. However, when they were trained extensively on just one lever, the digital rats stuck with the ‘wrong’ lever stubbornly, even when it had no chance of giving them a reward. Rather than having a chance of getting rewarded, the rodents stuck with the lever they were trained on. Dr Amitai Shenhav, Assistant Professor in Brown University’s Department of Cognitive, Linguistic, and Psychological Sciences and one of the paper’s authors, commented, “Psychologists have been trying to understand what drives our habits for over a century, and one of the recurring questions is how much habits are a product of what we want versus what we do. Our model helps to answer that by suggesting that habits themselves are a product of our previous actions, but in certain situations those habits can be supplanted by our desire to get the best outcome.” This model could potentially be a small step towards understanding human habits more concisely.
When I was writing the summary for the article, I did not really think too much about the five questions because I felt like a summary should stay true to its source. Changing the summary so it fits all five categories would be changing the story and, hence skewing the truth. I did have some difficulty in keeping the summary concise enough to fit the length of the article. The most difficulty was deciding which details to cut out and which to keep, while keeping the reader in mind. I did not want to have the length required but end up writing a confusing summary. To make sure the limited number of words were enough, I used quotes from the people who ran the experiments. My summary was aimed at the general public, so I tried my best to keep it to basic terms to avoid confusion. The main mission was to make sure that the summary was understandable by everyone and easily interpreted, so anyone could pick it up and know what is going on.
Doing this has given me some appreciation for journalists because it is very difficult to make a summary on an experiment and keep it interesting. If I had to pick between my summary and the article, I think it would be the article because going over both, mine is missing something. The article seems to appeal more to me, possibly because it was written by someone with more experience. The article also had an interesting title that made you want to read it more, granted the title was clickbait and overstated the extent of the experiment I still find it effective.
University of Warwick. “Train the brain to form good habits through repetition.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 28 January 2019. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/01/190128105227.htm>.
Watching this video, my first impression was, “this isn’t so bad.” As the video kept going I found my opinion changing drastically. The voices in his head were very terrible and negative, giving him negative feedback for everything that took place in the video. On certain things that we’d consider mundane, the voices would make them very difficult and tough to accomplish. One thing I did notice when I was watching the video was that everything changed when the wife, presumably, walks in. Her calm demeaner made the man calm down and it caused the voices to dissipate. Of the movies listed, I’ve only seen Donnie Darko as of now and comparing that to the simulation I’d say that media does not really cover the symptoms of schizophrenia very accurately. I don’t think it’s right for movies to exaggerate or understate the severity of mental illnesses because that puts the wrong impression in the minds of young children, who will then grow up believing this and forming incorrect stereotypes. The media has a lot of power lately and I think they should take responsibility for this power especially when they are addressing something as serious as schizophrenia.
Personally, I feel like I would enjoy most tasked if I am paid to do it. If I am told before hand I will most likely enjoy the task since I would be thinking about what I am going to be doing with the money. If I am told after that I am getting paid, I do not think I would remember the task being fond, I would just be happy to have been paid. If I had to pick a time in my life where I changed my beliefs due to cognitive dissonance, it would be the three years where I decided to be Muslim. I grew up in an extended family where both Christianity and Islam were very present, but despite that, I was Christian for most of my life because I saw the methods Muslims used to exercise their faith as very time consuming, boring, and, stressful. This all changed when my Father, who was the only Muslim in my immediate family, asked me to join him in his faith and in return he’d take me with him to Muslim festivals. I really did not enjoy Islamic worship before this but after that day, for three years, I was very invested in Islam and I was excited to pray five times a day facing East. After I moved to the United States, I decided I could not keep this up and gave up on Islam personally.
Personally, I don’t have a stance on whether on not cognitive dissonance is positive or negative. Just like most things in the world, it can be used for bad things in the wrong hands, but in the right hands you could do good things with it. In the wrong hands it could possibly be used to brainwash masses into doing unpleasant things but in the right hands it could be used to promote good behavior, which is subjective.
Growing up in Ghana, West Africa, school was very different for me. The relationship between teacher and student was a lot more intimate and close knitted. Our teachers were basically our second parents and they were treated as such. This actually made education very competitive for us since we did not want to disappoint our teachers by getting bad grades. I remember studying weeks before a every big exam or test just so I could get a good grade and impress my teacher. This relationship was lost when I moved to the United States in September of 2012. The relationship was much more formal with the teachers and you would never really tell your teachers how life was going back home. I felt like in Ghana our instructors knew their students personally so they knew how to approach teaching a class so everyone was on the same page. Some even went as far as coming to their students homes to give them extra hours of school time.
It would be hard for Americas system to be like this because of the difference in culture. It works in Ghana because we’re a very open society and children are raised by the community not just their family. One thing that could be done that is similar to this is having one teacher teach the same group of individuals from first grade to maybe sixth grade. I feel like it will be very beneficial to the students development, both in intelligence and knowledge, if they grow alongside a teacher they have a good relationship with.
“Stress permeates American society, and college is a very stressful environment for everyone involved. Stress management is a critical component of academic success in college. Describe your current stress management strategies, assess how well they work, and discuss what other stress management activities you could realistically incorporate into your routine to help you deal with stress more effectively.”
Currently, I am at that time of the year where my stress levels are almost at the peak. With finals about a month away and multiple papers due from most of my classes, this is the time of the year that most college students find themselves scrambling. To minimize stress when I’m doing a large load of homework, I take fifteen minute breaks every hour I work to refresh. During those fifteen minutes I watch things ranging from YouTube videos to comedy skits on Netflix. At the end of the day, when I’m done with my homework I spend time with my friends and relax. I find this to be the most efficient way of stress management since I find myself almost stress-free when I am with my close friends. Other effective ways I use to stress manage are running, playing soccer, and going to the gym.
another method that I think I should incorporate into my schedule is cooking. I used to cook a lot more in the beginning of the semester but as my work load increased I found myself eating at the jays nest a lot more often. Whenever I would cook I would feel no stress and it always felt good when the food came out good. If I can find more time in my schedule to cook I believe my stress would decrease .
Your Existing Situation
“Is reckless and short-tempered. His decisions are made with little thought out the consequences, often times leading to unnecessary stress and conflict.”
I do not agree with this decree because I do not consider myself as a short-tempered person as I consider myself a person with a lot of patience and I do not like conflict. I partially agree with my decisions having little thought because I tend to focus on the positive sides of my actions and get surprised when something negative happens
Your Stress Sources
“Wishes for freedom and independence, free from limitations and restrictions except for the ones he choices to give himself.”
I agree with this part because I do tend to dislike being told what to do. I like feeling in control of my own life and whenever someone tries to take the wheel it puts me in a sour mood.
The Restrained Characteristics
“His desire to avoid open conflict and tension forces him to put his desires on hold, even though he is feeling restrained and uneasy.”
“Current situation makes him feel unable to prove himself, but tries to make the best of things.”
I do tend to put my wishes on hold if it means avoiding conflicts so I do agree with this assessment.
Your Desired Objective
“Longs for tenderness and for a feeling of acceptance from a partner. Appreciates things that are beautiful, pleasing to the eye, and stylish.”
I believe most people long for tenderness and acceptance from their partners when they’re in a relationship. This assessment seems very general in my opinion.
Your Actual Problem
“Prefers to be left in peace and avoids arguments, confrontation and conflicts.”
Of all the others this is the one I felt portrayed my personality accurately because I like my peace and I do my best to stay out of conflicts.
Overall this personality assessment did not seem very accurate to me. I felt like they were pulling at straws hoping to land an assessment I connected with. Most of them felt very general and unconcise.