This is Episode 21 of PsychCrunch, the podcast from the British Psychological Society’s Research Digest, sponsored by Routledge Psychology.
What can we do to stay connected in the middle of a pandemic? We’ve all played our part in fighting COVID-19, and for many of us that has meant staying away from our friends and families. In this episode, our presenter Ginny Smith explores how this unprecedented period of separation has reinforced the importance of connection. Ginny looks at how video chats compare to in-person interaction, and how psychology could help improve virtual communication in the future. She also examines the importance of touch for reducing stress — and asks whether interactions with our furry friends could make up for a lack of human contact.
Our guests, in order of appearance, are Dr Shane Rogers, lecturer in psychology at Edith Cowan University, Australia, and Professor Patricia Pendry, from Washington State University.
Episode credits: Presented and produced by Ginny Smith. Mixing and editing by Jeff Knowler. PsychCrunch theme music by Catherine Loveday and Jeff Knowler. Art work by Tim Grimshaw. Script edits by Matthew Warren.
Background reading for this episode:
Characteristics of Student– Dog Interaction during a Meet-and-Greet Activity in a University-Based Animal Visitation Program, a paper by Patricia Pendry and colleagues, is free to access thanks to our sponsors Routledge Psychology.
Other research mentioned in this episode includes: