Wednesday, October 29, 2014


For my project, I'm going to be researching the emotional and psychological effects of a Disney theme park visit. I go with my family to Disney World at least once a year, and it's something that we all love and look forward to. Visiting these parks makes almost everyone happy, but I've always wondered about the deeper effects of going. My research question is; What does the literature say about the psychological and emotional effects of visiting a Disney theme park?

Monday, October 27, 2014

3 Possible Research Topics

Topic 1) What does the literature say about the psychological and emotional effects of visiting a Disney theme park?

Topic 2) What does the literature say about British bands from the UK becoming a successful part of the American music scene?

Topic 3) What does the literature say about how a supportive and loyal fan base be an economically-positive thing for an unsuccessful MLB team?

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Author's Bias in an Article

In the article "Hard Lesson in Sleep for Teenagers" by Jane E. Brody, there are several examples of biased comments. The article describes how most teenagers are deprived of sleep and the risks that come with it. She says that adolescents themselves are partially responsible for lack of sleep, because they are the ones who manage their own time. However, she also holds parents responsible for not taking away smartphones and computers, and high schools for setting the school day to start too early. While the article proves a point, it also contains bias.

The first example of bias is the Functional Fixedness bias, which "limits a person to using an object only in the way it is traditionally used." The author uses this bias when she explains how electronics are a main cause of loss of sleep. She writes, "Adding to the adolescent shift in circadian rhythm are myriad electronic distractions that cut further into sleep time, like smartphones, iPods, computers and televisions. A stream of text messages, tweets, and postings on Facebook and Instagram keep many awake long into the night.", but she doesn't account for the many other reasons why teenagers may need to have access to these devices at night. They're not just for texting; they also work as an alarm clock, calendar, display the weather, and allow you to set reminders. Teenagers can use these in order to plan for success the next day by getting up early, writing down test dates, reminding them of homework assignments, and learning what kind of weather they will be walking home in. 

The next bias used is the Observation Selection Bias, which is "the effect of suddenly noticing things that were not noticed previously." This bias is used many times in the article when the author acknowledges what can happen if we don't get sufficient amounts of sleep. However, these arguments have been around for a while and just not brought to our attention. Brody states that, "Insufficient sleep in adolescence increases the risks of high blood pressure and heart disease, Type 2 diabetes and obesity, said Dr. Owens, pediatric sleep specialist at Children’s National Health System in Washington. Sleeplessness is also linked to risk-taking behavior, depression and suicidal ideation, and car accidents." These have always been effects of not getting enough sleep, but they have only become well-known through news and media over the last few years. 

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Checked something off my bucket list!

One thing on my bucket list was to do a walk or race for a charity. I was able to accomplish this when my friend invited me to do the Jimmy Fund Walk with her in Boston. It was such an incredible experience and I had so much fun. It was even better knowing that all the money I raised was going to help people suffering from cancer. Overall, it was a great day and I would definitely do this again.

I got the "1st Year" sticker after I signed up for the walk. The Jimmy Fund also mailed me my race number, my race t-shirt and hat, and a handbook that told you all about the walk and what to do on the day of the walk. One page said when my walk start time was and when to arrive. 

But my favorite part of the walk was getting to cross the finish line and get my medal surrounded by such amazing people. I had one of my best friends with me and cancer survivors all around me. Listening to their stories and hearing how passionate they were about the walk and what it stood for changed the way I think. It was an amazing day, and one I'll never forget. 

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Peer Interview

For my interview, I got to talk to Liam L. and Kristin L.

Liam L.

Liam said his favorite TV show is "The Office" and his favorite sport is "basketball". If he was stuck on an island, Liam said he would bring "my dog , food, and stuff to start a fire with." He also said the most random thing about him is "probably my middle name." If he could listen to only one song for the rest of his life, it would be "a Jack Johnson song." Finally, Liam's scariest moment was when "I got lost trick-or-treating and it took me a while to find my way home."

Kristin L.

Kristin's middle name is "Ashley" and her favorite sport is "soccer."  A random thing about her is that she's "still scared of the dark." The scariest thing that happened to her was "almost drowning in a pool."  One song she could listen to forever would be "Animals by Maroon 5." Finally, Kristin would take "a boat, food, and a friend" with her if she was stuck on an island.