Sleep and mental health.

The BBC's All in the Mind Radio programme often details interesting examples of research that can spark your students' interest in Psychology.  Recently, the editor of the British Psychological Society appeared on the programme and outlined recent research. One of the most interesting findings from sleep researchers Putilov et al. was that we are not all either owls or larks, but there are two intermediate chronotypes.  (So far listeners to the programme have proposed "swifts" and "dodos or pelicans").  This ...

Environment and physiology – Seasonal Affective Disorder

For those of us in the Northern hemisphere, this is a highly relevant topic at this time of year. Seasonal Affective Disorder is is a type of depression that's related to changes in seasons and the accompanying decrease in natural daylight.  It is a very good example of an interaction between the environment and a physiological process. This blog by Dayna Evans carries an excellent description of her suffering from SAD. Rosenthal et al (1986) summarised a series of studies and concluded ...

Design experiments / Physiology / Lung volume

As part of the IA requirements you may well be asked to plan and carry out an experiment on a topic of your choosing pertaining to a central theme. My students are given free reign to look at the human body and construct an experiment investigating the manipulation of one variable on another. I came across this excellent package online that is bustling with possible experiments you could explore. Just remember to reference/footnote your source. The experiments they discuss are mostly ...

Human physiology

Human physiology represents a significant portion of the Diploma syllabus and so I would like to share two resources that may help with any possible route of inquiry you may have: http://www.innerbody.com/ is an amazing website that allows you to work through each of the organ systems that you study, providing text both on the body system and on each and every significant tissue / organ within the system. Innerbody is your interactive guide to the complex human system and all its inner ...