Spring 2022 Newsletter | In the Media

Rebecca Spencer is quoted extensively in an article about learning development in sleeping babies’ brains. Spencer says children shouldn’t abandon the practice of napping as they get older. “Naps are awesome — they’re doing all of this important stuff for kids at a really critical time,” Spencer says. “Why stop napping when it’s so important?” (The Washington Post, 2/5/22)

Ervin Staub, professor emeritus of psychology and founder of the Psychology of Peace and Justice program, is quoted in an article about the trial of the three Minneapolis police officers who looked on as fellow office Derek Chauvin killed George Floyd. Staub’s research led to the development of the Active Bystandership for Law Enforcement (ABLE) project used by police departments across the country. (USA Today, 2/7/22)

Robert Feldman is quoted in a story about remote hiring processes giving some job seekers the impression that they can get away with extreme forms of dishonesty. Telephone calls can create a psychological distance between the interviewer and interviewee, Feldman notes, which may make it easier for people to justify presenting themselves in an inaccurate way. “It’s very easy to present yourself as you would like to be, as opposed to the way you really are,” says Feldman, author of “The Liar in Your Life.” White lies to avoid hurt feelings are taught to children, and as they get older, the stakes of lying are raised — most notably in a job interview, when there’s money on the table. (New York Times, 2/17/22) 

Ilia Karatsoreos is extensively quoted in a story about how exposure to natural light affects sleep patterns in humans. “Sunlight is many orders of magnitude more intense and has a much different spectrum than regular indoor office or home lighting,” says Karatsoreos. “So it is much more effective at synchronizing and aligning our clocks than indoor lighting. In addition to the amount and quality of light, the timing of the light is critical. It is important that light is delivered at the right time in the right quantity and with the right qualities.” (Discover Magazine, 3/29/22)

Rebecca Spencer is quoted in an article about the possibility of pushing school start times back later in the morning in an effort to improve youth mental health. “When we’re instead waking up to darkness, we lack that external alerting signal, that bright light that it takes to signal it is time to be awake and helps you focus,” Spencer says. “So if you take that away from kids, it presents as grogginess and inattentiveness, but it has broad ramifications. It's gonna tell you how they’re going to perform cognitively. It’s gonna tell you how their behavior is going to be, behavior and mood in the classroom.” (ABC News, 4/3/22)

Daniel R. Anderson, professor emeritus of psychology, is interviewed about the birth of children’s educational TV with the premiere of Sesame Street in 1969 and how he brought scientific research into the writing of children’s television. “I did a lot of study on Sesame Street on how children watched it,” he says. “We found that the primary driver of attention was how much the children actually understood the program they were watching — how much they’re interested in the content, not so much the production values.” (Disrupted [Connecticut Public Radio], 4/6/22)