Department of Psychology News

WUOT: Internal Clocks and Bright Lights From Above

Ahead of Daylight Saving Time on March 9, WUOT’s Brandon Hollingsworth interviewed College of Arts and Sciences Dean Theresa Lee about the mental and physical effects of the twice-yearly time shift for the station’s series, The Method. The Method is a series that explores the intersection of science and society. Then Matt Shafer Powell finds

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The Christian Science Monitor: Look up. Is that a crocodile?

The Christian Science Monitor, along with several other national and international news outlets, have covered a UT study that has found that crocodiles can climb trees. The study by Vladimir Dinets, published in the journal Herpetology Notes, finds that certain species of crocodiles are adept at climbing trees. In fact, the reptiles could climb more than

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WBIR: Study links alcohol use & domestic violence

Gregory Stuart, a psychology professor, was interviewed by WBIR-TV’s Robin Wilhoit about his research which shows that use of alcohol, not marijuana, leads to violence between partners. The research among college students found that men under the influence of alcohol are more likely to perpetrate physical, psychological, or sexual aggression against their partners than men

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UT Research Finds Link Between Alcohol Use, Not Pot, and Domestic Violence

Alcohol use is more likely than marijuana use to lead to violence between partners, according to studies done at UT. Research among college students found that men under the influence of alcohol are more likely to perpetrate physical, psychological, or sexual aggression against their partners than men under the influence of marijuana. Women, on the other hand, were more likely to be physically and psychologically aggressive under the influence of alcohol but were also more likely to be psychologically aggressive under the influence of marijuana.

WBIR-TV: Study, Gut instincts predict marriage success

Michael Olson, associate professor of psychology, was interviewed on WBIR-TV about his recent research which finds that spouses’ automatic attitudes, not their more thoughtfully held conscious attitudes, are a good predictor of marital satisfaction. It is the first study to look at the long-term implication of automatic attitudes—positive or negative thoughts, feelings or actions that

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UT Study Finds Crocodiles are Cleverer than Previously Thought

A mugger crocodile balances twigs on its nose to tempt birds collecting small branches to build nests with, at Madras Crocodile Bank, Tamil Nadu in India. Photo credit: Vladimir Dinets

Turns out the crocodile can be a shrewd hunter himself. A UT researcher has found that some crocodiles use lures to hunt their prey. Vladimir Dinets, a research assistant professor in the Department of Psychology, is the first to observe two crocodilian species—muggers and American alligators—using twigs and sticks to lure birds, particularly during nest-building time. Dinets’s research is the first report of tool use by any reptiles.

Voice of America: Crocodiles, Alligators May Lure Prey with Sticks

The research of Vladimir Dinets, a research assistant professor in the Department of Psychology, has been featured in multiple media outlets including CNN,  Voice of America and Science magazine. Dinets’ work observes two crocodilian species—muggers and American alligators—using twigs and sticks to lure birds, particularly during nest-building time. Dinets’ research is the first report of

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UT Research Finds Newlyweds Implicitly Know If Marriage Will Fail

Newlywed bliss can overshadow serious marital problems, but a new study by UT researchers shows that signs of a failed marriage are often there from the beginning—if couples look closely. The study, by Michael Olson, associate professor of psychology, and Jim McNulty of Florida State University, finds that spouses’ automatic attitudes, not their more thoughtfully held conscious attitudes, are a good predictor of marital satisfaction.