Topic: Social & Behavioral Sciences

June 13, 2017 Prenatal Face Preference - New research suggests that not just newborns, but fetuses, too, preferentially favor the human face.
April 18, 2017 Peak Randomness - Mathematically random behavior in humans peaks at the quarter-century mark.
April 17, 2017 Biased Artificial Intelligence - Computer scientists discover bias in artificial intelligence programs.
April 13, 2017 Night Owl Genes - Some night owls may have a mutation that lengthens their circadian clock.
April 12, 2017 Memorable Smells - How does our brain associate certain smells with vivid memories?
March 22, 2017 Importance of Smell - Losing the sense of smell can have unexpected consequences.
March 21, 2017 Contagious Parrot Laughter - Rare New Zealand parrots start playing spontaneously when they hear certain calls.
February 28, 2017 Neuroscience of Viral News - What makes a news story go viral?
February 22, 2017 Social Robots - Robots can help people help themselves.
February 20, 2017 The Body’s Sense of Taste - Taste receptors are actually located all over the body, not just in the mouth.
January 5, 2017 Sleepwalking Brains - A listener asks what's going on in the brain when someone is sleepwalking.
December 21, 2016 The Sociable Brain - Do social butterflies and wallflowers have different brain structures?
December 12, 2016 The Brain on Time - The brain chemical dopamine may regulate our perception of how fast time passes.
December 9, 2016 Sitting Close to the TV - A Science Update listener asks if sitting too close to the television can hurt your eyes.
December 8, 2016 Physics of Tomorrow - In a special issue of Physics Today, scientists speculate about the physics of the 22nd century.
December 7, 2016 Binge Drinking Teens - Could teenage binge drinking have effects on the next generation, even if they’re never exposed to alcohol?
November 24, 2016 Pricey WIne - The price of a wine arbitrarily influences how pleasurable it is to drink.
November 15, 2016 Stressed Spleen - What does the spleen have to do with anxiety?
November 2, 2016 Referee Vision - A referee’s success depends on knowing what to focus on, and what to ignore.
November 1, 2016 Scary Monsters - A listener wonders why we fear irrational things when there are plenty of real threats out there.
October 31, 2016 Chimpanzees & Bonobos - Even though the Congo River keeps them apart today, chimpanzees and bonobos managed to interbreed several times in the past.
October 28, 2016 Seeking Out Fear - The science of human fear is much more complex than is commonly thought.
October 26, 2016 Fear & the Brain - The science of human fear is much more complex than is commonly thought.
October 13, 2016 Chewing Gum Myth - Does it really take seven years to digest chewing gum?
October 10, 2016 Informal Health Care Training - Can a modest amount of training help improve health care delivery to the world’s poor?
September 28, 2016 Emotional Music - Music and speech use the same tonal qualities to evoke happy and sad emotions.
September 26, 2016 Violence Perceptions - Why our perception of violence goes up, while actual violence goes down.
September 22, 2016 Brain Voices - Scientists are beginning to reconstruct the words people hear based on electrical activity in their brains.
September 15, 2016 Tree-Climbing People - The Twa people of Uganda climb trees with ease. A new study suggests that the trait may be the result of practical necessity.
September 8, 2016 Neolithic Woodworking - The discovery of ancient wooden wells in Germany reveals that Neolithic woodworking was more sophisticated than previously believed.
September 5, 2016 Gambling Wolves & Dogs - Does their divergent evolution affect risk-taking behavior in dogs and wolves?
August 30, 2016 Visualizing Addiction - Sensors that light up in presence of neurotransmitters are helping unlock the secrets of drug addiction.
August 5, 2016 Teen Brains - Teen brains are much more developed in some areas than others.
August 3, 2016 Smoke Resistance - A random mutation allowed our ancestors to stay relatively healthy despite exposure to toxic woodfire smoke.
August 2, 2016 Slow Motion Bias - Slow motion videos of violent encounters bias our interpretation of the events.
July 21, 2016 Sperm Whale Messages - The click-like sounds made by deep-diving sperm whales carry personally identifying information.
July 20, 2016 Ecstasy Research - Can studying how certain Schedule I drugs work lead to insights about brain function?
June 28, 2016 Aging Monkeys - How do other primates’ social lives change as they age?
June 24, 2016 Gluten-Free Foods - Gluten-free diets are all the rage, but only a small percentage of the population is truly sensitive to the wheat protein.
June 23, 2016 Birds, Litter, & Novelty - How do crows and other birds calculate the risks and benefits of human-dominated urban environments?
June 22, 2016 Hospital Noise - Hospitals are noisy environments, but it doesn’t have to be that way.
June 14, 2016 Monopoly, Status, & Food - Our perception of our social status, even during a brief board game, may be powerful enough to affect our food choices.
June 1, 2016 Scanning for Consciousness - A brain scanning technique could help determine levels of awareness experienced by patients in comas.
May 27, 2016 Psychadelics & Depression - Hallucinogenic drugs could lead to new treatments for intractable depression.
May 26, 2016 Voice & Gender Perception - Subtle vocal cues lead us to perceive voices as feminine or masculine.
May 25, 2016 Vocal Fry - Why some popular singers express themselves with a bit of grit.
May 17, 2016 Mother’s Voice - Brain scans reveal the power of a mother’s voice on her child.
May 16, 2016 Ancient Florida - New evidence confirms that a prehistoric archaeological site in Florida is one of the continent’s oldest.
May 13, 2016 Sleep & Aging - Insomnia in older adults is due to a failure in brain circuitry.
May 10, 2016 Subconscious Visual Bias - A neuroscientist finds that subconscious stereotypes can lead us to see hostility in friendly faces.