News & events

Frederick Grouzet: Doom scrolling

Counselling demand on rise as 'doom scrolling' takes its toll (Times Colonist) The Times Colonist reports on the increasing demand for counselling services in Greater Victoria amid the constant barrage of distressing news from around the world. Frederick Grouzet encourages people to focus on what they can control and learn to let go of what they can't. This article appeared on the front page of the print edition and in 15 other media outlets.

Bonnie Leadbeater: Difficult conversations

Victoria man who survived Las Vegas festival shooting reacts to Texas tragedy (CHEK News) CHEK News speaks with Bonnie Leadbeater regarding Tuesday's school shooting in Uvalde, Texas. Leadbeater believes it's never too early for parents to start a difficult conversation with their children about their fears and concerns in the wake of recent tragic events.

Bonnie Leadbeater: teen attacks

Police in Metro Vancouver highlight series of recent 'disturbing' teen attacks (CBC News) CBC News examines a recent series of violent attacks in Metro Vancouver in which groups of teens target one individual and post videos of the attack online. Professor emerita Bonnie Leadbeater comments on the concern over the trauma for victims assaulted in this way, saying parents should check in with their kids to talk about what is going on and how to deal with it. Additional coverage: All Points West (CBC Radio)

Tomiko Yoneda: Traits that could predict risk of dementia

The personality traits that could predict your risk of dementia revealed by experts (The Sun UK) The Sun, a popular daily newspaper in the UK, reports the findings of the new study linking certain personality traits to an increased risk of cognitive impairment later in life. Lead author Tomiko Yoneda comments on increased levels of conscientiousness as one potential strategy. Additional coverage: Votre personnalité a un impact sur la santé de votre cerveau ! (Cosmopolitan) Une étude affirme que votre personnalité a un impact non négligeable sur la santé de votre cerveau (Elle)

Tomiko Yoneda: Some Personality Traits Linked to Cognitive Impairment

Some Personality Traits Appear to Be Linked to Cognitive Impairment Later in Life (Science Alert) New research published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology suggests that people with certain personality traits are more vulnerable to cognitive decline later in life. Tomiko Yoneda, lead author of the study, says that people with a high level of conscientiousness and a low level of neuroticism are less likely to develop mild cognitive impairment as they get older. Additional coverage: Dementia: Study Finds Daily Habits Are Linked To Cognitive Decline Later (Times of India)

Robert Gifford: I'm still scared

'I'm still scared': Prescribed burns trigger fear in Lytton children 9 months after wildfire (Times Colonist) Residents of Lytton, BC say last week's prescribed burns in the area brought back traumatic memories of the devastating wildfire in June 2021. Robert Gifford highlights the findings of his study examining the effects of climate anxiety on youth. This article also appeared in nine other media outlets.

Frederick Grouzet: Forest Bathing

Parks Canada partners with the Nature Prescription Program (Radio-Canada) Thanks to a recent collaboration with Parks Canada, physicians registered to the BC Parks Foundation's Nature's Prescription Program can now prescribe spending time in nature at one of the country's many parks and historic sites to patients experiencing anxiety and depression. Frederick Grouzet explains the mental health benefits of 'forest bathing.'

Nigel Mantou Lou: COVID-19 Related Racism

COVID-19 related racism impacts sense of belonging, reporting incidents: Study (Vancouver Sun) A new UVic-led survey reveals that the majority of Chinese-Canadians who experienced coronavirus-related racism and discrimination keep it to themselves rather than tell someone about it. For the Vancouver Sun and The Province, Nigel Mantou Lou, lead of the study, comments on why Chinese-Canadians are reluctant to report incidences of hate crimes to the police. Additional coverage: Expert Q&A on anti-Asian racism during pandemic (UVic News)

Nigel Mantou Lou: Hate Crimes

UVic study shows hate crimes against Asian Canadians increase during pandemic (Victoria News) New research led by Nigel Mantou Lou shows alarming rates of discrimination and hate crimes faced by Chinese Canadians and other Asian Canadians, with reports increasing hundreds of times over what they were before the pandemic began. This local article pulls from the university's announcement this week, while Radio Canada turned directly to Lou for commentary. Additional coverage: Le racisme anti-asiatiques continue d'avoir des conséquences avec la pandémie (Radio-Canada) Expert Q&A on anti-Asian racism during pandemic (UVic News)

Nigel Mantou Lou: Anti-Asian Racism

Advocate pushes for awareness of anti-Asian racism as new surveys highlight toll (CTV News) Amid the rise of hate crimes against Asian-Canadians during COVID-19, Amy Go, president of the Chinese Canadian National Council for Social Justice, and other advocates are calling for greater awareness of the issue of racism in this country. Nigel Mantou Lou recognized the need for new public policies and guidelines to combat racism. This Canadian Press article also appeared in Global News, CHEK News, The Toronto Star, Yahoo! News Canada, MSN and more than 70 other media outlets. Additional coverage: Polls note impact of COVID on discrimination against Asians (Le Droit) CNKW Radio Expert Q&A on anti-Asian racism during pandemic (UVic News)

Robert Gifford: Getting Ready for the Big One

The Big One: Getting Ready for North America's Next Major Quake (The Walrus) The Walrus magazine examines the root causes of people's indifference and general lack of interest in natural disaster preparedness. Robert Gifford discusses the "dragons of inaction" and how these psychological barriers prevent us from making better environmental choices.

Robert Gifford: Are you willing to make needed changes?

Climate change a key issue in federal election, but are you willing to make the changes needed? (CHEK News) CHEK News reports on how political parties plan to address Canada's climate-related challenges. Robert Gifford comments on the country's carbon emission targets and the role each and every one of us must play to achieve them. Additional coverage: Experts on federal election (UVic News)

Robert Gifford: Eco-Grief

'Ecological grief is very real' and it can impact mental health of Canadian youth (Global News) Global News reports on the prevalence of climate anxiety among eco-advocates and Canada's youth. Robert Gifford comments on its impacts on mental health and how we can support one another while taking action against the climate crisis.

Danu Stinson: romantic potential?

How to tell if your friendship could have romantic potential (Metro UK) Coverage continues on new UVic research by Danu Stinson exploring how romantic relationships begin and the factors that influence attraction. This research was also covered by a number of other Canadian and US radio and news outlets. Additional coverage: Most Romantic Couples Started Out as Friends, Study Finds (Health Day)

Frederick Grouzet: How to avoid social anxiety

Déconfinement : comment éviter l'anxiété sociale? (CBC Radio-Canada) As the world gradually reopens, many people are feeling anxious about socializing in public after more than a year of pandemic-induced isolation. Radio-Canada's "Boulevard du Pacifique" speaks with Frederick Grouzet about how people can manage and overcome the social anxiety of returning to pre-pandemic life.

Jim Tanaka: Why people of colour are misidentified so often

Why people of colour are misidentified so often (BBC) BBC News has published an extensive feature on the psychology behind misidentification of people of colour, particularly in work environments. This article asks why, when being confused with someone else can happen to anyone, does it happen more often in majority-white spaces to people of colour? Among several leading experts, BBC News has turned to Jim Tanaka for expert comment on facial recognition and automatic categorizations.

Sarah Macoun: Video games help brain function?

Can video games help improve brain function? (CTV Vancouver Island) Coverage continues about Dino Island, the video game created for children with neurodevelopmental disorders. CTV Vancouver Island speaks with Sarah Macoun for insight into the research and development process of this new hybrid learning tool. Additional coverage: Dino Island improves memory and brain function (UVic News)

Sarah Macoun: R&D on Dino Island

Dino Island (CFAX Radio) Sarah Macoun joins CFAX Radio to discuss UVic's research and development of Dino Island, a new age-appropriate video game and learning tool designed to improve the brain function and cognitive performance of children with neurodevelopmental disorders. Additional coverage: Surrey links to 'Dino Island' game, aimed at kids with neuro-developmental disabilities (Surrey Now-Leader)

Sara Macoun: Improving Brain Function

Game changer: Video game could help improve brain function for children with disabilities (Times Colonist) The Times Colonist speaks with Sarah Macoun about a new video game project, Dino Island, designed to improve the attention and working memory of children with neurodevelopmental disorders. A team at UVic, building on years of study, have partnered with the private sector to create this project.

Frederick Grouzet: How People Cope

The new normal: Don't expect a return to pre-pandemic life, experts say (Times Colonist) The Times Colonist is turning to experts for comment on pandemic fatigue and the new normal. Saul Klein sheds light on the shifting global economic landscape and how businesses are adapting to the challenges posed by COVID-19 while Frederick Grouzet explains how people cope differently to significant life changes and uncertainties.

Bonnie Leadbeater: Hateful Comments

'Your parents would be ashamed'; Horgan sounds off on harassers who have threatened Dr. Henry (CHEK News) CHEK News reports on Premier John Horgan's response to people who have uttered threats and made violent threats toward provincial health officer Bonnie Henry. Professor emerita Bonnie Leadbeater explains the psychology behind these hateful comments and notes that people who resort to violence should be legally accountable for their actions.

Catherine Costigan: Get Outside!

New survey shows spending time outdoors is imperative for Canadian's mental health (CHEK News) A new survey by the Nature Conservancy of Canada found that more people are turning to public parks and green spaces as a way to relieve stress during the COVID-19 pandemic. CHEK News spoke to Catherine Costigan for insight into the mental health benefits of outdoor exercise.

Brianna Turner: Suicide Prevention Barriers

Calls for changes, barriers at Goldstream Trestle after Langford teen's death (Victoria News) Victoria News reports on the growing calls for safety improvements at Goldstream Trestle in Langford following the latest incident of youth suicide in the area. Brianna Turner comments on the complex nature of mental health illnesses and the effectiveness of suicide prevention barriers.

Frederick Grouzet: Finding ways to Thrive in Pandemic

Pandemic stress can lead to impaired decision-making, breaking of health orders: expert (Times Colonist) A front-page article in the Times Colonist includes insights from Olav Krigolson and Frederick Grouzet about the mental health impact of the COVID-19 crisis. Krigolson comments on how coronavirus-related stress impairs people's ability to make good decisions, while Grouzet reveals how some people are finding ways to thrive amidst global uncertainty. Victoria hotline offers sounds to inspire joy and calm during pandemic (Times Colonist) Another local media outlet also turned to Grouzet for comment on the new community hotline launched by Victoria's Artist in Residence program to provide music therapy and guided meditation for people struggling with coronavirus-related stress.

Brianna Turner: It's OK not to feel OK

It's OK not to feel OK during the holidays and pandemic: Psychologist (CTV Vancouver Island) CTV News turns to Brianna Turner for insights into the mental health implications of COVID-19, especially on the impacts of isolation measures during the holiday season. Turner outlines the importance of maintaining social connections during times of stress and uncertainty.

Frederick Grouzet: Anxious about the U.S. election?

Anxious about the U.S. election? You're not alone (Times Colonist) For a front-page story in the Times Colonist, Frederick Grouzet and Oliver Schmidtke break-down the Canadians' growing sense of unease over the possible outcome of the US presidential election. Grouzet explains how most Canadians are struggling with their lack of influence or control over an outcome that will greatly impact them. Schmidtke discusses Canadians' concern about the instability and direction of democracy in the US. Additional coverage: Experts on US presidential election (UVic News)

Helia Sehatpour: Need a green recovery from Covid

I am a graduate student in the psychology department and recently wrote an op-ed on the need for a green recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada, which was published in the following two news outlets: • The Georgia Straight - Vancouver: https://www.straight.com/news/helia-sehatpour-no-more-time-to-waste-on-climate-crisis • NOW Magazine - NOW Toronto: https://nowtoronto.com/news/op-ed-no-more-time-to-waste-on-the-climate-crisis

Bonnie Leadbeater: Wildfires add to stress during pandemic

Wildfires add to stress during COVID-19 pandemic on Vancouver Island (CHEK News) CHEK News spoke to experts Bonnie Leadbeater and David Atkinson about various implications of the smoke drifting to Vancouver from the California and Washington wildfires. Atkinson explains how environmental shifts are leading to more extreme dry seasons and greater impacts, and Leadbeater discusses how air quality issues are compounding mental health strains.

Paterson, Turner: Impact of pandemic on mental health

UVic researchers study impact of global pandemic on mental health (Times Colonist) UVic researchers are leading the Canadian portion of an international collaborative research project examining the global impact of COVID-19 on mental health. Theone Paterson shares some key elements of the Canadian aspect of the survey study which is being co-led by Brianna Turner. Additional coverage: Expert Q&A on COVID-19 and mental health impacts (UVic News)

Stephen Lindsay: Conspiracy Theory

The Destructive Conspiracy Theory That Victoria Unleashed Upon the World (The Capital) The Capital, a local news source edited by former National Post reporter Tristin Hopper, explores the historical impact of harmful conspiracy theories and specifically focuses on the story of Michelle Proby. Stephen Lindsay comments on the nature and weaknesses of memory and how these can contribute to the creation of false memories.

Theone Paterson, Brianna Turner on CFAX

International mental health research (CFAX Radio) Theone Paterson joins CFAX Radio to talk about a new international collaborative research project which examines the global impacts of COVID-19 on mental health. Paterson comments on the Canadian aspect of the survey study which is being co-led by Brianna Turner. Additional coverage: Expert Q&A on COVID-19 and mental health impacts (UVic News)

Bonnie Leadbeater: We could handle this better

'We could handle this better': expert says B.C. needs to beef up COVID-19 message to youth (CHEK News) Following a recent spike in COVID-19 cases for BC's youth aged 20 to 29, CHEK News spoke to Bonnie Leadbeater who says that blaming young people for being careless is not the right approach. Leadbeater urges the province to direct more specifically applicable health guideline messaging towards youth.

Robert Gifford: Will COVID-19 Help Climate Change

The New Reality: Will COVID-19 help flatten the curve on climate change? (Global News) Environmental experts argue that the COVID-19 pandemic may actually save lives by improving air quality around the world. Robert Gifford says this global disruption provides governments and the public with a unique opportunity to address the climate crisis.

Jim Tanaka: Video Game Environments for Autism

Student developers aim to create a game for children on autism spectrum (Washington Post) A Montreal-based entertainment company has partnered with aspiring student developers to create a game for children living with autism. Jim Tanaka says video games provide environments that are more stable and predictable than the real world for those on the spectrum of autism.

Robert Gifford: Dragons of Inaction

Les « dragons de l'inaction », ces obstacles psychologiques à la lutte pour le climat (Radio-Canada) Radio-Canada features an interview with Robert Gifford about the "dragons of inaction" a term he coined to reference the psychological barriers of climate change. Gifford also discusses what COVID-19 can teach us about our collective capacity for change and other topics from the new podcast miniseries "Scales of Change: A field guide to the Dragons of Climate Inaction" from Future Ecologies. Additional coverage: Scales of Change: Q&A with creators of new climate action podcast (UVic News)

Catherine Costigan: Made in BC Approach Working

'Made in B.C.' approach appears to be working during pandemic (CHEK News) BC's response to COVID-19 has proven to be effective and the province plans to maintain a slower approach to reopening. Catherine Costigan believes people are able to maintain safety protocols for extended periods of time when given credible evidence and a good rationale.

Bob Gifford: Don't Blame the Covidiots

Don't blame the COVIDIOTS, blame the messengers: Why some people don't take the pandemic warnings seriously (National Post) Some Canadians are still not taking the pandemic warnings seriously. Robert Gifford says human brains are wired towards optimism. This front-page article in today's National Post also appeared in the Vancouver Sun, the Province and in more than 30 other publications

View all events on the UVic Psychology calendar.

IMAGINING UVic (Inspiring Mathematical Growth and Intuition in Girls)

Eric Metcalfe: Pop Anthropology

Pop Anthropologyis an exhibition of multimedia artist Eric Metcalfe's oeuvre, spanning over sixty years, in celebration of the artist's honorary doctorate from UVic (UVic DFA 2021, BFA1970).

Eric Metcalfe: Pop Anthropology

Pop Anthropologyis an exhibition of multimedia artist Eric Metcalfe's oeuvre, spanning over sixty years, in celebration of the artist's honorary doctorate from UVic (UVic DFA 2021, BFA1970).

Still Standing: Ancient Forest Futures

This exhibition explores the relationships between art, ecology and activism in order to envision futures that honour reciprocal relationships with nature.

Out of Place

Solo exhibition by Connie Morey

Learn to Meditate: Hybrid program

Participants are introduced to, and practice a simple breath meditation. This is a hybrid class.

HAPPENING

100 % on Rotten Tomatoes & winner of the Venice Film Festival Golden Lion

In Audrey Diwan's tense and quietly radical film, Anne, a bright young student in early 1960s France, discovers she's pregnant. The law, as the doctor who breaks the news tells her, "is unsparing."Anyone who helps her terminate the pregnancy will land in jail, as will she. Happeningwon the top prize at last year's Venice Film Festival. [It's] adapted from the 2000 book by the French writer Annie Ernaux, detailing the experience of her own abortion in 1963.And if 1960s France seems like a faraway time and place, Happeningcomes entwined with a warning: the country it's showing us is likely to be the United States of Tomorrow. —TIME Magazine

"It's the type of movie that deserves praise and your undivided attention no matter when it comes to theaters near you."—Rolling Stone

"Sublime, in the truest sense of the word, it offers a take on the swinging 60s that contains images as gorgeous an anything in a Monet painting, as well as details so ugly you may keepforgetting to breathe."—London Evening Standard

For archive news older than January 2013, see the news archives.