Category Archives: Psychology

Results – Tom

After all of my work this semester, I have finally finished my experiment. While it took five days of running the experiment, I was able to get a pretty decent yield. Overall, I had 83 good results, which is over a fifth of the entire school. I ended up having to throw out a handful because something or other went wrong during the experiment. Most often this was because they choose to reject but never proposed a counter offer. Continue reading

Dry Run – Tom

Even though I was in St. Louis for Robotics this past weekend, I still made sure to work on my independent. For one, summer is drawing near, and so I need to conduct my experiment when I still have this vast pool of subjects as my disposal. However, I have also gotten to the exciting part of the project where all of my research will begin to pay off. (Though I must continue to keep in mind that my result may show nothing, which would be sad, but I cannot force correlations.) So over the week, I spent a good part of my evening practicing on my fellow robotics members. Now, of course, none of their data will be used as I am still making the final tweaks to the procedure. Continue reading

Deception for Good – Tom

I was discussing my procedure with my mentor last week when an interesting detail came up. The importance of making sure that the participants in the study do not think it is about race. This is important for an obvious reason, if people think that I am going to be observing how they interact with race, they will be paying more attention to how race is affecting them. But this is a study about the implicit effects of race, and so calling attention to it would completely ruin all of my data. Sadly, I must say, that means all of you aren’t going to be able to be participants. Continue reading

Procedure Update – Tom

Since last week was a bit of a tangent, I want to give an update about the procedure for my study in this blog post. I’ve finally narrowed it down to two different game theory scenarios I might use for my study. In truth, it is actually just two different forms of the ultimatum game. I have discussed the ultimatum game before on my blog, but it never hurts to have a refresher. How it works is one of the two players has been given a dollar and gets to offer a way to split it. The other player can either accept or reject the proposed split. If they accept, the dollar gets divided in the proposed way. If they reject, then nobody gets anything. It is a simple game, but when played out has many small physiological subtitles. Continue reading

Time and Westtown

Time is important at Westtown, with so much of each day filled to the brim with classes and sports. Most of our free time ends up being spent staying on top of our work. So. I want to use this post to talk about the lessons I’ve learned at Westtown and through my independent. It’s a bit of a tangent, but I am still working on developing my procedure, and I didn’t want to retread so much of my last post. Continue reading

A Shift in Focus

It’s gotten to the point where I need to move onto the planning stage of my own study. This does not mean that I am going to stop reading and researching, just devote a little less time to it. Now I wanted to use this blog post to dive into my initial planning and next steps for my own research study. Continue reading

The Mystery of Airline Loyalty Programs | Silver

At the end of my last blog, I mentioned how airlines have become so adept at differentiating their products that in a foreseeable future, a greater level of customer-driven customized flight experience can be expected. In fact, not only is this phenomenon a significant trend in the airplane seat development, it also represents a unique feature of the industry’s revenue composition. When I was building an eco-hotel business model in my Business & Society class back in the fall, I noticed that approximately 10% of hotel revenue comes from sources other than regular room rates. This seems quite reasonable: after all, meals, laundry, mini-bar expenses are often an important part of travelers’ hotel bills. However, I was surprised to find out that according to a consulting firm IdeaWorks, the ancillary revenue of traditional U.S. air carriers (non-inclusive of those low-cost competitors like Southwest) had 11.9% share of their total revenue in 2015, meaning that in average, when a major U.S. airline sells a $1,000 ticket, it would later get $119 more revenue from somewhere else. While these numbers seem to illustrate the power of the “customization” I have previously mentioned, they indicate something far more profound. A deeper look into IdeaWorks’ report suggests that nearly 55% of U.S. major airline ancillary revenue came from “sale of FFP (frequent flyer program miles).” In fact, aside from the seemingly excessive baggage and seat selection charges, airlines increasingly found frequent flier programs to be just as lucrative. Arguably, the proliferation of loyalty programs in airlines has become a definitive feature of the industry, shaping the modern-day air travel landscape in so many ways.

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American Airlines AAdvantage Program

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Ultimatums and Bias – Tom

This week I am going to dive right into another study I have read recently. I found it to be an interesting study and was much more align with my overall focus than the study I talked about last week. The study is called The Price of Racial Bias: Intergroup Negotiations in the Ultimatum Game. The purpose of the study was to see if racial stereotypes of Black Americans would affect perceptions in financial negotiations. Continue reading

Buildings and Bias – Tom

As I said I would last week, I have dived into reading the research of others on implicit bias. I wanted to use this post to share some of what I learned. The study I read is called Community Perception: The Ability to Assess the Safety of Unfamiliar Neighborhoods and Respond Adaptively. Unlike many of my other sources, this one was focused on the implicit biases people create from neighborhoods and the buildings within them. The study had two goals, to see if the subjects could accurately estimate the safety of an unknown neighborhood, and to see if they were using indicators of disorder to do so. Continue reading