Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2017

Abstract

Although the Internet has provided people with nearly unlimited access to seemingly endless topics, the accuracy of this information is not guaranteed. A primary advantage of the Internet – that anyone can publish almost anything and that information spreads virally – is also a double-edged sword. Complex scientific topics are often simplified and diluted to a fault for non-scientists, or lay people, to understand. Research from subjects that directly relate to people’s everyday lives, like psychology, appear to experience the greatest misinterpretation on the Internet. In fact, an entire genre, coined "pop psychology," describes the antiquated, unproven, oversimplified, misunderstood, and misinterpreted psychological concepts promoted by non-scientists that are prevalent throughout the World Wide Web (Lilienfeld, Lynn, & Beyerstein, 2010). One very prominent psychology myth that has persisted for decades concerns brain lateralization. Despite the studies that have illuminated the details of brain lateralization and articles devoted to debunking this myth, numerous social media websites continue to offer quizzes and articles that reinforce the belief that some individuals are right-brained, which means they are the creative type, and some are left-brained, which means they are more mathematical and logical.

Contest

Library Student Research Award

Award

Honorable Mention

City/State

Boca Raton, Florida

Department

Library

Comments

Francais Olexa won Honorable Mention in the 2017 Library Student Research Awards. Self-nominated.

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