Writing for Scientific American Mind


I woke up at 5:00 this morning which on it’s own is quite the feat. But it was all worth it because at 6:30am I interviewed an Italian neuroscientist over Skype about a recent study she did on brain stimulation and people’s perception of beauty.

But let me step back a second. For my Rhetoric class in October I had a wonderful visiting tutor who happens to be one of the editors of Scientific American Mind magazine. At the end of the block, our final assignment was to write an article that could appear in the magazine. Everyone wrote their piece and Karen chose a few that she would actually publish. I was lucky enough to have my article chosen and now I am working on making a final draft for a spring issue!

I chose to write about a recent study called, “The World Can Look Better: Enhancing Beauty Experience with Brain Stimulation,” that was published in the Oxford Journal of Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience. Basically, neuroscientists were able to apply electric stimulation to people’s brains which caused them to find pieces of art beautiful. Immediately, this made me consider whether this could be applied to relations between people. Could we alter people’s brains to make them think someone is attractive when previously they didn’t consider it? I won’t give away what I’m going to write in the article but the future is exciting!

After a wonderful interview, which reminded me how much I love neurology, I realized how lucky I was. I am only a first year and I have already been given this incredible opportunity to publish my work and to make connections with people in a field I may want to later become involved in.  I don’t think many other schools or professors at other schools provide these kind of exciting chances for their students, especially undergraduates.

So in the end, another thank you must go out to Quest. Thank you for connecting me with an amazing tutor who has allowed me to experience the exciting world of journalism and neuroscience.

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