Suzanne K. Moses is Annual Reviews’ Senior Electronic Content Coordinator. For 15+ years, Suzanne has played a central role in the publication of Annual Reviews’ online articles. Not a single page is posted online without first being proofed and quality checked by Suzanne.
For years now, Suzanne has sent a company-wide email to announce the publication of each new volume. These emails provide insight into the variety, depth, and quality of the articles. Her messages are thoughtful, discerning, playful, and deeply personal. They remind us all of the beauty and wonders of science; all the reasons we do what we do.
We’ve now asked Suzanne to share her volume announcements with our readers. We hope you enjoy this new series of posts!
Online Media Editor
Like many, I grew up thinking that memories were a perfect record of what happened in my life. Discovering that we rewrite our own memories all the time was a very strange moment for me. I’ve come to believe that memory is a slippery and somewhat dangerous thing; we have to trust our own minds, but we also need to recognize that those same minds have a vested interest in protecting themselves. The autobiography of Elizabeth Loftus, “Eavesdropping on Memory,” is a fantastic inside look at studying memory. It is a honest and open look at her thoughts, and it feels intensely personal. It isn’t often that an autobiography moves directly onto my personal top ten list upon first reading—but this one did. It’s impossible to skim, and I found it difficult to pull a single quote that captures the writing style for you.
I soon discovered I wasn’t particularly interested in mathematical psychology, but I never missed the required Friday seminar sessions where faculty and fellow graduate students discussed their research findings, even though my mind was elsewhere. I would often sit in the back and write letters to my relatives. Sometimes I actually got some sewing done (e.g., hemming skirts that needed to be shortened) to the sound of voices discussing the latest developments in mathematical learning theory.
I also enjoyed Metcalfe’s “Learning from Errors” because I find the idea that being willing to experiment and make mistakes leads to better learning and understanding overall is rather uplifting. One aspect of this I particularly found interesting was regarding immediate versus delayed feedback about errors:
The study found that college students performed equally well in the immediate and delayed feedback conditions, whereas children in grades 3 to 5 did better when the feedback was delayed. Interestingly, Kulik & Kulik (1988) noted that whether delayed or immediate feedback produced better results differed between studies conducted in the classroom and those in the laboratory. Lab studies tended to show that delayed feedback was better, whereas classroom studies favored immediate feedback. They concluded, however, that the real difference between these studies was whether the learners paid attention to the feedback. Students in the classroom are highly engaged in knowing the answers to questions right after taking a test.
Finally, I want to point out that this volume of the Annual Review of Psychology has something for everyone and an article for nearly every situation. Have you ever had the impulse to really analyze your close relationships? Let me suggest Finkel’s article “The Psychology of Close Relationships: Fourteen Core Principles.” You might learn new and exciting things about how relationships are constructed.
Or have you ever felt uncomfortable interacting with a robot? Been caught treating your furby as a living pet? Then you may want to look at Broadbent’s “Interactions With Robots: The Truths We Reveal About Ourselves.” It’s interesting to flip the usual lens and ask what these interactions say about us.