Video Summary: Ben Ambridge: 10 myths about psychology, debunked | TEDxYouth@Manchester


    Video Summary: Ben Ambridge: 10 myths about psychology, debunked | TEDxYouth@Manchester

  • 1 Ben said men and women aren't that different

    Ben said that when compared to each other, the measurable psychological differences between a man and a woman aren't so big. For example, the biggest difference discovered was how women are slightly better at grammar and language than men.

  • 2 Ben said Rorschach inkblot tests aren't good for diagnosing people's personality

    Ben said how Rorschach inkblot tests have no validity in diagnosing people's personality and are not used by modern-day psychologists. He also mentioned a recent study which found how Rorschach inkblot tests falsely diagnosed schizophrenia in every 6th healthy test subject.

  • 3 Ben said there are no different learning types

    Ben said learning styles are made up and are not supported by scientific evidence. He mentioned how a person cannot learn how to drive a car just by listening to instructions and never driving for real.

  • 4 Ben said about 58 percent of performance in tests is due to genetics

    Ben also discussed how by comparing GCSE results with identical twins versus non-identical twins, they got an idea of how much variation and performance is due to the environment and how much is due to genes. It turned out that about 58% is due to genetics.

  • 5 Ben said no brain side is dominant over the other and we use the brain as a whole

    Ben said that nearly everything we do involves nearly all parts of our brain, even doing the most mundane task like engaging in small talk. There is some grain of truth in dominant left and right sides of brain, but it's not as big as people think it is.

  • 6 Ben said Mozart's music temporarily gives an IQ boost to some but not all people

    Ben also mentioned how Mozart's music temporarily boosts a person's IQ if he's a fan of Mozart. He also said how Stephen King's stories can boost the IQ of his fans. In short, enjoying something you are a fan of can temporarily boost your IQ.

  • 7 Ben said there are no cultural differences in how we choose romantic partners

    Ben said that across all cultures, the majority of men look for younger, attractive women, and the majority of women look for older, resourceful and ambitious men.

  • 8 Ben said thet the brain creates patterns from randomness and assigns them meaning

    Ben talked about how players sometimes perform really well, but how that pattern is the same when they perform badly. Our brain likes to assign a pattern and meaning to randomness to feel better about it. Exceptions to this theory are football penalty shootouts.

  • 9 Ben said Milgram's famous learning and punishment experiment was misunderstood

    Ben said that Milgram's famous learning and punishment was misunderstood - the participants weren't trying to teach others by punishing them, but wanted to go through the experiment because of the long-term scientific benefits over short-term pain.

  • 10 Ben said it's very hard to spot a liar

    Ben said hundreds of psychological tests showed that spotting a liar is very hard except in one case when people make TV appeals for missing relatives. Then it is easy to find out if the relative was murdered by the people looking for him as they make many blunders and change speech patterns.

  • 11 Ben concluded by saying psychological myths can be debunked by making tests against the data

    Ben finished his speech by saying psychological myths should be tested against the data in tightly controlled experimental studies. And by doing so, psychology can differentiate between the theories that are supported and those that are just myths.