David Goggins
Former Navy Seal
Career Development
Bryan Cranston
Critical Thinking
Liv Boeree
International Poker Champion
Emotional Intelligence
Amaryllis Fox
Former CIA Clandestine Operative
Chris Hadfield
Retired Canadian Astronaut & Author
from the world's big
Start Learning

Would Baltimore Be Burning If Police Wore Anger Detectors? with Paul Ekman

Psychologist Paul Ekman, one of the world's foremost experts on emotion, suggests that police departments can keep risky officers off the streets with one simple technological assessment.

Paul Ekman: Police are there to protect us. They’re there for our safety. Now occasionally, there will be a bad apple, but my work with police has suggested that that’s really exceptional. The problem is they have a gun, so they can do a lot of harm quickly. But that’s overwhelmingly not the problem. The problem is the pressure that police are under to make instant decisions for safety, for their safety and the safety of others.

We all have bad days. We all have days, or most of us, where we say, "I wish I hadn’t said that. I wish I hadn’t been so impatient. I was off today." Well if a policeman is in that state, and they’re not any different than the rest of us in that regard, it’s a lot more dangerous. So it’s a dangerous job that requires that you’re in a calm state of mind when you go out to perform it. And we have the means to both assess that and further that. We’re just not deploying it.

My biggest dream — and I haven’t yet been able to convince any police department to try this is to see whether we couldn’t have a really fast, easy technological assessment. So before someone goes out on the beat, they sit down and their heart rate, blood pressure, skin conductance is monitored for five or 10 seconds. It says, "Yes you’re in your normal state; go ahead and good luck." Or, "Boy, you’re very aroused today. Let’s see if we can do something to help you calm down a bit before you go out on the job." We have the means to do that. I believe it could reduce some of the problems we currently have because police are human like everyone else. All human beings have bad days. We need a way to be able to specify this policeman’s having a bad day today. Let’s see what we can do with a few minutes of a few exercises to bring him into a calmer state so he can go out and do his job in a way he won’t regret, or she won’t regret.

Most American police officers are just like everyone else, says psychologist Paul Ekman. One of the only real differences is that when an officer's emotions get the best of him or her, the consequences of those actions tend to be much greater — and sometimes even deadly. Ekman, who is one of the world's foremost experts on emotion, suggests that police departments would benefit from keeping risky officers off the streets, and that identifying these officers would be easy with the adoption of a simple daily diagnostic test.

Remote learning vs. online instruction: How COVID-19 woke America up to the difference

Educators and administrators must build new supports for faculty and student success in a world where the classroom might become virtual in the blink of an eye.

Credit: Shutterstock
Sponsored by Charles Koch Foundation
  • If you or someone you know is attending school remotely, you are more than likely learning through emergency remote instruction, which is not the same as online learning, write Rich DeMillo and Steve Harmon.
  • Education institutions must properly define and understand the difference between a course that is designed from inception to be taught in an online format and a course that has been rapidly converted to be offered to remote students.
  • In a future involving more online instruction than any of us ever imagined, it will be crucial to meticulously design factors like learner navigation, interactive recordings, feedback loops, exams and office hours in order to maximize learning potential within the virtual environment.
Keep reading Show less

Signs of Covid-19 may be hidden in speech signals

Studying voice recordings of infected but asymptomatic people reveals potential indicators of Covid-19.

Ezra Acayan/Getty Images
It's often easy to tell when colleagues are struggling with a cold — they sound sick.
Keep reading Show less

Supporting climate science increases skepticism of out-groups

A study finds people are more influenced by what the other party says than their own. What gives?

Photo by Chris J Ratcliffe/Getty Images
Politics & Current Affairs
  • A new study has found evidence suggesting that conservative climate skepticism is driven by reactions to liberal support for science.
  • This was determined both by comparing polling data to records of cues given by leaders, and through a survey.
  • The findings could lead to new methods of influencing public opinion.
Keep reading Show less

Octopus-like creatures inhabit Jupiter’s moon, claims space scientist

A leading British space scientist thinks there is life under the ice sheets of Europa.

Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SETI Institute
Surprising Science
  • A British scientist named Professor Monica Grady recently came out in support of extraterrestrial life on Europa.
  • Europa, the sixth largest moon in the solar system, may have favorable conditions for life under its miles of ice.
  • The moon is one of Jupiter's 79.
Keep reading Show less

What is counterfactual thinking?

Can thinking about the past really help us create a better present and future?

Jacob Lund / Shutterstock
Personal Growth
  • There are two types of counterfactual thinking: upward and downward.
  • Both upward and downward counterfactual thinking can be positive impacts on your current outlook - however, upward counterfactual thinking has been linked with depression.
  • While counterfactual thinking is a very normal and natural process, experts suggest the best course is to focus on the present and future and allow counterfactual thinking to act as a motivator when possible.
Keep reading Show less