Tuesday, 24 May 2016

How to beat exam stress - insights from Psychology

 Published this week an interesting article on how to beat exam stress with the power of your mind
but what does psychological research say about stress ?

Matthew Owens, Jim Stevenson, Julie A. Hadwin, Roger Norgate. When does anxiety help or hinder cognitive test performance? The role of working memory capacity. British Journal of Psychology, 2012; DOI: 10.1111/bjop.12009  found that in a study of 96 school students, anxiety only had a negative effect on test results if memory was also poor.. On the contrary if memory was good, anxiety resulted in better results. .
However exam time  does often lead to poor diets.

Perceived changes in food intake in response to stress: The role of conscientiousness.
O'Connor, Daryl B. ; O'Connor, Rory C. ; Stress and Health: Journal of the International Society for the Investigation of Stress, 2004, Vol.20 (5), p.279-292
These results suggest that when faced with a stressful encounter,individuals who are perfectionists  may be less well equipped to cope and as a result start to eat more  high energy snacks 

Other free places where you can search for high quality psychology articles on this topic are:

On a more practical note Mind has shared 14 tips from students to beat exam stress 
Student minds have a top 5 

PsyDok  open access repository  that specialises in psychology. Has links to papers and articles.

PubPsych –This freely accessible search portal for psychology. Content contains the records of approximately 9,000 journal articles, books and book chapters, intervention programmes, research data, and psychodiagnostic tests from all sub-fields of psychology. Many records contain links to full texts, where available.

PsychSpider – Search engine searches for references to articles and papers relating to psychology. Many in German

Subscription databases include: PsychInfo
Web of Science

Monday, 23 May 2016

World Humanitarian Summit- try these resources on International Aid

One key area being covered by the 2016 conference is humanitarian aid financing.
Here are some resources for exploring and getting access to data

UN Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UN OCHA). UN OCHA FTS contains humanitarian contribution data from donor governments and recipient agencies as well as information on specific pledges carried in the media, on donor websites, or quoted in pledging conferences.

International Development Statistics (IDS) online databases, Development Assistance Committee (DAC), Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). These are available via the OECD ilibrary These databases comprise the DAC annual aggregates database (comprehensive data on the volume, origin and types of aid and other resource flows) and the Creditor Reporting System.  
CRS Aid Activity database aims to provide a set of readily available basic data that enables analysis on where aid goes, what purposes it serves and what policies it aims to implement, Data are collected on individual projects and programmes includes Gender programme data.

International Aid transparency Intiative
Seeks to improve the transparency of aid. The registry has lists and data from over 400 organisations, including charitable donations.

IATI is a voluntary, multi-stakeholder initiative that seeks to improve the transparency of aid, - See more at: http://www.aidtransparency.net/about#sthash.m8U3nbew.dpuf
IATI is a voluntary, multi-stakeholder initiative that seeks to improve the transparency of aid, - See more at: http://www.aidtransparency.net/about#sthash.m8U3nbew.dpuf

Global Humanitarian Assistance.
This programme provides objective, independent, rigorous data and analysis on humanitarian financing and related aid flows, Funding received from Canadian and UK government among others. Has reports on on state actor funding and more

  Sources of background papers/ reports articles discussing aid funding

Try these useful websites

Great site from the Institute of Development Studies where you can locate full text papers and reports covering all aspects of development studies.

Research4Development(R4D) a database containing information about research programmes supported by DFID. It contains many indepth case studies and evidence based reviews.

USAID Development Experience Clearinghouse which provides free access to over 134,000 technical and other reports relating to USAID funded projects.

World Humanitarian Summit - will it fix the system? Get the facts!

This week the World's First international humanitarian conference opened.
But can a United Nations Summit fix a system being stretched beyond capacity? Listen to this podcast from UN Despatch to see what Shannon Scribner Oxfam America’s Humanitarian Policy Manager thinks

Other viewpoints on the summit.
European Commission 
UK government - International Development Committee paper on priorities for reform
Overseas Development Institute
International Council of Voluntary Agencies. 
International Organization for Migration.
 Human Rights Watch
 he summit is not uncontroversial. Karl Blanchet in the conversation blog
Co-coordinator of Public Health in Humanitarian Crises, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine 'Calls it a fig-leaf'.

 News coverage
IRIN news Specialist humanitarian news service.

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

Today is #IDAHOT2016: celebrate diversity fight prejudice

Since 2005, May 17th has been dedicated to the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia, marking the day in 1990 when the World Health Organization removed homosexuality from its list of mental disorders.

Use these resources to find out more:
IDAHOT official website has details of the 2016 theme:  “Global Celebration of Sexual and Gender Identities”

The United Nations Free and Equal campaign has released a song - Why we fight! 
UNESCO has materials on ending homophobic bullying in schools. 

Youth voices Count encourages you to create your own avator to show support.

 Why do campaigners continue to fight?
Despite the WHO 1990 decision controversy remains over the classification of sexual orientation as a mental health issue. See this paper which explores the issue relating to the 11th revision of the
International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD-11), planned for publication in 2017.

 ILGA provides details of Legal discrimination worldwide. Its 2015 report on state sponsored homophobia found 75 countries where same-sex acts were illegal/

Transgender Europe maps gender identity recognition and rights  in European Nations. In terms of safety it found that There is no safe country for trans people. From 2008-2015  more than 100 murders of trans people have been documented in Europe

Other surveys have found intolerance towards LGBT individuals in various parts of the world. A 2013 Pew Global acceptance of homosexuality survey concluded:  that while acceptance was high in North America and Europe, shockingly In sub-Saharan Africa, at least nine-in-ten in Nigeria (98%), Senegal (96%), Ghana (96%), Uganda (96%) and Kenya (90%) believe homosexuality should not be accepted by society.

 Gallup polls have found that LGBT citizens report lower levels of wellbeing than the rest of the population. 
Stonewall has UK based research which examines attitudes towards LGBT community and continuing evidence of discrimination

Further research
LSE Library subject guide for gender has links to key databases
LSE Library Hall Carpenter archives has historic background