First Impression #1

Do beer goggles really exist?

The question of if beer googles used to show teens and future drivers the affects of alcohol truly do not exist. There is no accurate way to show how alcohol affects somebodys coordination skills. Just using a set of goggles to blur and distort somebody’s vision is not a way to accurately show disorientation. Although the use of the goggles to scare little kids out of drinking and driving might be useful it is not an accurate way to portray alcohols affects.

Mythbusters first impression: Do Beer Goggles really exist?

First, we start off with the question what are beer goggles? “Beer goggles”, is the term used to describe the effect of alcohol on the visual perception of an individual, causing them to become more sexually attracted towards someone that is not really considered “attractive”, before becoming susceptible to the effects of alcohol. In the twenty-first century we see how young people are affected with the ideas presented to them through social media. With the fast growing world of technology it makes it easier for young people to become more brainwashed by these ideas. Being a college student, I hear this term being used loosely everywhere around the campus, and its common use leads us to question whether it is actually true.

In the Mythbusters minimyth,”Beer Goggles”, the mythbusters team wanted to test the idea that alcohol truly makes us see people as more attractive than they truly are. The experiment started off by rating a cluster of photos while sober. Each mythbuster got a different set of pictures of the opposite sex, and they had to rate them on a scale from 1-10 in a limited amount of time of 5 seconds. The experiment was ran for a total of three trials these being: sober, buzzed, and drunk. After each trial each team member would be given a new set of pictures to rate, and for each trial a total score was kept in order to compare the different stages of alcohol, and the effect it had on their visual perception. The overall goal of the experiment was to see if the total score would increase along with the amount of  alcohol being consumed.

Like in many experiments, this one had both strengths and weaknesses. First, we can start off by evaluating the strengths and rationalizing if they complied with the use of the scientific method. For an experiment to be plausible it is important to follow the steps of the scientific method, starting off with, “Ask a question”. The question that the Mythbusters were trying to test was if beer goggles do exist. They followed their question by constructing a hypothesis in order to have a foundation for their experiment. The team’s hypothesis was that the score of each of the team members would increase after consuming more alcohol.  Next, they tested the myth with three different trials;each distinguishing a different level of alcohol consumption. Having different trials was a positive side to the experiment because it let them see any differences among the data being collected, and see if the total score of the ratings was actually increasing after each run. After completing the three trials they were able to graph the results and compare the data in order to see if the alcohol was actually affecting their visual perception, and whether or not the results were linear among the three different team members. Another strength was that the group of pictures provided for each team member consisted of a wide range of racial diversity and ages making it difficult for the members to choose a rating during the time frame provided. The diversity in the pictures strengthened the experiment because in the 5 seconds given to rate the pictures, the members had to make split-second decisions which could easily be affected by the consumption of alcohol.

All though the experiment did follow some of the steps of the scientific method, some others were excluded. One of the weaknesses of the experiment was that the team did not do any outside research in order to have some background on the concept that they were testing. In order to have background information the team could have compared the foundation of their experiment with that of others that were trying to test a similar concept. Another major weakness of the experiment was that too many variables were present. The three team members were of different ages, as well as two of them being male and one female. The team should have focused on testing one certain age group or sex because these variables could have affected the results of the experiment. Another variable that was of great weakness to the experiment was providing each team member with a new set of pictures for each new trial. It would have been best to rate the same pictures throughout the entire experiment because changing the pictures could have been the reason some of the scores were higher, and not because the alcohol made the new set of pictures more attractive. Using the old photos would have let the members see the same faces but choose a different rating due to the effect of the alcohol.  Another idea that was not taken into consideration by the team was that each member would require a different amount of alcohol to become drunk. It would have been a benefit to set a different amount of alcohol to be consumed by each member based on their age and weight in order to actually become drunk.

In many aspects, the experiment was well structured and in the end it seemed to be  plausible because the results demonstrated a steady improvement between each trial. Like many experiments this one could be ran again with a better foundation in order to meet all of the standards of the scientific method.

Does Sleep Affect the Ability of an Individual to Perform Physically?

I believe that sleep will affect the ability of an individual’s ability to perform physical activity based on the fact that your muscles and mind need rest to be able to function at top levels. If one or the other is affected and is not allowed to rest and recover from usage, we as an individual are left at levels that are less than 100%. Not being able to rest our brains may affect the outcome of how we think or how well our brain is able to control our muscles and thinking patterns. I also believe that the lack of sleep will affect ones ability to perform physical activity at their peak performance because of the many sleep studies involving lack of sleep on other areas of everyday life. Many scientist have proven that lack of sleep can lead to many things and I feel as though physical activity can be attributed to this list as well.

First to recruit participants I would have to focus on the sports teams or anyone involved in physical activities around campus. After acquiring participants I would test every participant in a series of test that involve physical activities and the times it took to complete each task after a full rest day of more than 8 hours of sleep. After a series of 5 times I would ask the participants to stay awake for 24 hours and have them monitored to make sure they did not deviate from the path. After the 24 hour sleep deprivation period , I would then have the participants finish the same physical activities again for another 5 times and compare the information gathered. Ideally I would like to be able to have 50-100 people to test to assure the best results. After I conduct these test maybe in the future if the same participants would like to participate again, I could increase how long the test subjects are sleep deprived.

Mythbusters Experiment Critique


The Mythbusters considered the question of Are Women Better Than Men at Reading Emotions?, and concluded that although men and women seemed to recognize emotions equally, women were faster in coming to conclusions and did so with more certainty. The experimenter team put pictures of themselves on a projector, and only showed the portion of the picture with their eyes and asked the subject to say what emotion the picture was expressing. After the answer was given, the experimenters showed the subjects the full picture and commented on if the subject was correct.


            The strengths in the experiment were that there seemed to be racial diversity in the test subjects, the experimenters used a series of 17 pictures with a variety of emotions, and that the experimenters were willing to consider alternate conclusions other than their original hypothesis, which although not expressly stated, I assumed to be that women are better than men at reading emotions.


            However, there were many weaknesses to the experiment. The first is that the hypothesis was not expressly stated, as discussed earlier. The hypothesis should be fully stated in accordance with the scientific method. The Mythbusters’ conclusion that a women’s response time was quicker was not supported by empirical data, and I would recommend that they time the difference between when the picture was shown and the response rather than relying on anecdotal evidence. The pictures that the experimenters used seemed to be staged, and an actual facial emotion may be different to what the experimenters thought their faces should look like when they feel an emotion. It would be beneficial to use more authentic photos to see if an actual emotion makes it easier for subjects to tell the emotion expressed. The photos that were used in the experiment, as they were pictures of the experimenters themselves, did not represent many ethnicities and cultures, and should be expanded to include more people. The experimenters also gave feedback on what the emotion actually was to the subject, which may have influenced how the subjects answered the later questions. Instead, the subjects should receive no feedback so they are only making decisions based on past experience and knowledge.


            Overall, the Mythbusters looked at an interesting question, but their methods could be improved.

Week 2 First Impression – Research Methods

Myth busters has been a popular TV show for many years. During an episode titled “Laws of Attraction” the myth busters team designed an experiment to test the popular idea that men find blond women more attractive. While some aspects of the experiment did follow the proper scientific method, other aspects did not.

The first thing the myth busters did was identify a question of interest. This is a good first step and a great way to begin establishing the experiment. After this, the team selected a research method and chose their participants. They chose a group of females and three groups of males of approximately the same age and conducted their procedure. This was also another positive aspect of their experiment. The team selected a specific age group and gender to investigate which eliminated any unwanted variables. After conducting their procedure, the team compiled the data and analyzed the numbers to see if there were any significant differences. It turns out, there weren’t. The analysis of the data is an essential part of the scientific method that the team did complete.

However, there were a few aspects of their experiment that could have used some improvements. At the beginning, the myth busters had a question they wanted to answer; “do men find blonds more attractive?” However, they did not construct a testable hypothesis. They also did not review any scientific literature in order to construct this hypothesis. They could have investigated similar studies in order to guide their hypothesis and the structure of their procedure. This is an essential part of the scientific method that they did not complete. After completing their procedure, the team tabulated and analyzed their data but they did not make any theories as to why they discovered these results. They found that the three hair colors had received approximately the same ratings when averaged out and concluded that hair color was not a factor in “attractiveness” according to men. From these results they could have build a theory as to why the idea came about in the first place.

This study was very interesting and had many strengths but it could have included more elements of the scientific method to eliminate the weaker areas of the study.

Is it as dangerous to drive drunk as it is to drive while on the phone?

For this episode, the Mythbusters team decided to test an interesting and relevant question in modern society: is driving while on a cell phone more dangerous than driving while drunk? The team structured the experiment so there were two drivers who would each do a control lap while neither on the phone nor drunk, a lap while they were on the phone with another member of the team, and  finally a lap while drunk.

The course the two drivers were to complete consisted of four sections:

  • Section 1- Accelerate to 30mph and stop at a stop sign
  • Section 2- Parallel park
  • Section 3- Time trial (the goal was to maneuver through this section with an average speed of 15 mph
  • Section 4- Accident avoidance. This section required the driver to react to last minute instructions to either change to the left or right lane, or to continue on in their current lane. This was intended to simulate avoiding an accident.

Before the structure of the experiment is discussed, it seems important to note one obvious piece of information that is not mentioned: there is never any definition given to describe the level of intoxication that is considered “drunk” in this context. The success of this study relies completely on the degree of intoxication of the person driving. If the driver has a BAC of .04, their competency behind the wheel  will be completely different from a driver with a BAC of .14 or higher. The omission of this paramount detail invalidates any conclusion that is drawn after the results of the experiment are processed.

With that being said, there were some strengths that came out of this study. First of all, the conversation on the phone was well constructed and very cleverly diverted the attention of the driver by asking questions that made the driver think, or asking the driver to repeat a phrase word for word. Second, the stipulation getting the driver to maintain a certain speed while going through obstacles eliminated a variable that could have invalidated that exercise. Finally, the use of a split second decision was a strong method that served both to test the reaction time of the driver and to eliminate the possibility that the driver would improve after successive runs on the same course due to knowledge of the course.

The conclusion that talking on the phone can be more dangerous than driving drunk, while possibly true in many cases, is not supported by this study due to the lack of a definition and control for degree of drunkenness. Had the degree of drunkenness been included in the study, it would have been an overall solid way to test this question. For this study to be more accurate, the research question could be changed to “at what level of intoxication does driving drunk become more dangerous than talking on the cell phone?”. Thanks for reading!

First impression: Does music relieve stress when doing work?

Research Question: Does listening to music relief a person from stress when doing work?

Hypothesis: Music motivates the person to do more work when stressed out, and makes them feel relaxed.

1.Ask people to complete a survey around the Austin College campus (faculty or students) if music helps them with work.

2. Survey asks questions about stress,if time flies by real quick, boredom, and how much work is completed when listening to music or no music and relaxed or stressed out.

3.Compare how many people listen or not listen music while working.There will be options with low, medium or high to determine how much work, relaxation and boredom are affected by listening to music.

4. Compare how time, boredom, and how much work is completed between music listeners and non music listeners by the answer choices provided by the people who take the survey.

5. Then distinguish how many people are more relaxed or stressed out with music.



Research Methods – Is Yawning Contagious – First Impression

Have you ever heard about people who go into the world and try to find ancient legends and prove them to be true? Today, I watched a video about people similar to those adventures who call themselves the MythBusters; however, this group focuses more on using scientific logic to figure out the truth behind stories, questions, facts. The MythBusters do not travel the world in search of the Lost City of Atlantis, well I don’t think so. The video I observed was about try to prove if the action of yawning is contagious. The MythBusters sent out a message looking for volunteers to act as test subjects in their experiment. They experimented on the volunteers by placing each individual in their own isolated room, which each had a hidden camera in them, while the MythBusters observed their test subjects from their control room. One of the MythBusters, Carrie, would yawn at two of every three test subjects as she ushers them into their cubicle. She does this in order to figure out if the volunteers would yawn faster, if at all, if they observed the stimulus of yawning. The test subjects don’t do anything but stand in a small room with a paper sign that says: QUITE PLEASE. It does take some time but eventually the volunteers start yawning. After five hours the MythBusters eventually finish experimenting all fifty of their test subjects. The results of this experiment concluded that 29% of their test subjects yawned when they subjected to the stimulus of Carrie yawning, while 25% of these tests subjects still yawned even when they did not observe to Carrie’s yawning. The average time it took for those subjected to Carrie’s yawning to yawn was 9 minutes, while it took those who were not subjected to the yawning seed to yawn in a 9.6-minute average. The MythBusters confirmed that based on their results and how large their test audience was that yawning is contagious.


During this experiment the MythBusters used some very procure methods that made this experiment successful; however, some of methods they used also could have hurt their results. Some of the strengths in the MythBusters procedures include sending out a message to receive willing volunteers for their experiment, placing each volunteer into their own isolated room, watch the test subjects with hidden cameras from a control room, and have someone yawn at two of every three subjects as she ushers them into their cubicle to notice if there is a difference between those who yawn with a stimulus and those who yawn without one. Some of the weak points in the MythBuster’s procedure include not hiding the cameras well enough because some of the test subjects found the cameras and that could have hurt the results of the experiment, or stating the differences in their test subjects because different people who also have different backgrounds and of different ages could react different to this. The overall focus of this experiment was to see if yawning is contagious and as stated before yawning is contagious. Another confirmation that yawning is contagious is that I yawned so many times during this film and even now as I am writing this blog.

Research Methods // Mythbusters

Hello everyone,

This week, we were are assigned to critique the experiment methods of a Mythbusters mini myth. I decided to critique the experiment “Are Women Better At Men at Reading Emotions?”. In this mini myth, the three experimenters had the subjects predict the emotions of different pictures of the experimenters’ eyes. The result, as many would expect, was that women are better and quicker in predicting emotions than men are.

A major strength of the experiment was that the experimenters tested a diverse selection of individuals, varying in race, ethnicity and gender. Despite the diversity, the experiment still lacked in the number of people tested. The experiment also occurred over a short period of time, which could have caused the subjects to rush their thinking process. These weaknesses can easily be improved by elongating the time period of the experiment which can result a larger pool of people to test from.  Other strengths the experiment included were the variety of emotions shown, and the challenging concept of the experiment. The test showed a total of 17 emotions and showed only the eyes instead of the whole face to the subjects. This leads to the third main weakness of the experiment. I believe the experiment is not realistic because of the exaggerated expressions of the pictures. In reality, no one’s mouth is shaped in an upside-down “U” when they are sad. A solution can include having the subjects predict emotions by observing real life situations, through pictures and video clips.

Overall, the short clip was interesting, and  I’m excited to learn about more psychology experiments this semester.

See you guys soon,



What belief system consists of the highest percentage of self-actualized individuals?

This question I hold near to my heart. I am nearing my twenty first birthday and I find myself as almost a rarity of sorts. I claim to be somewhat of a unicorn due to my strong sense of self-actualization. I follow a God that I know has set a plan before me. I serve a God who promises me I will not go hungry, I will have shelter, and I will be clothed. My God has promised me that any danger that comes my way I will overcome, as is this is all apart of his plan for me. If the danger or fear I am experiencing does eventually take my life from me, I am ensured by my Savior that this is for his greater purpose. I may find safety and securities even whilst transgressed by paranoia, and anxiety. I worship the God who Loves me and the rest of humanity more than anything else in his creation, and insists I must love my neighbor as myself. I always feel as though I belong. My God has taught me that I am made in his wonderful image and that I was sculpted carefully by him, also that as long as he is with me I may accomplish all paths before me. I believe all of the concepts of my religion enforce Self-actualization on all of its true followers even at a relatively young age.

Hypothesis: Followers of Jesus Christ are most commonly self-actualized over opposing belief systems consisting of the beliefs of Humanism, Atheism, Agnosticism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Satanism, Islamism, Judaism, Sikhism and Catholicism. Some would argue Judaism and Catholicism follow the same God, This is incorrect. Judaism denies Jesus Christ of Nazareth as being the son of God thus distancing them from the Holy spirit the power that is alive in every follower of Jesus Christ. The same power that raised Jesus from the grave three days later after he was crucified on a cross for the sins of all humanity so that they may believe and follow him receiving eternal life in God. Catholicism agrees with Christianity in the sense that they accept Jesus Christ as the son of God, yet unlike Bible following Christians the traditions of Catholicism require their members to adhere to the traditions instilled by the catholic hierarchy; the pope can speak for God; Confession to a priest is required; Attending mass is required; To make it to heaven one must first be accepted into the catholic church by an ordained minister. These concepts interfere with a true relationship with the God of the bible and insinuate a false understanding of God’s forgiveness for his children after true repentance of sins.

Conducting my research would be rather simple and easy for a college student like myself to do with a couple dollars for gas.

1st- I would create a poster board and note cards illustrating Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs. Physiological needs, Safety needs, Belonging and Love needs, Esteem needs, Self-Actualization needs

2nd- I would sit in front of the Cafeteria on campus and ask as many people to view the pyramid.

3rd- I would ask each individual what religion they assume to be categorized under and where on the hierarchy they see themselves at.

4th- I would repeat these steps outside of a church, synagogue, Buddhist and Hindu temples, Catholic Church, Mosque, etc…

5th- I would do the same process in a mall just to randomize the selection pool a little bit more.

Finally I would review the data and organize by belief system which faith contains the highest number of self-actualized individuals.

Do not think I forgot about the agnostics and atheists I am sure they will stumble into my research, and if you insist these are not belief systems trust me they are putting their faith in no faith. In order to make sure that the number of each belief system was rather similar I would make sure I got at least 100 individuals from each walk of life, but for the faiths that would be easier to obtain a larger number of individuals I would base the percentage off of whatever number of those individuals I recorded past 100.