Want to study Positive Psychology at Penn? This way please…

Martin Seligman & Nico RoseI spent the last weekend in Philadelphia at the Penn MAPP Alumni Meeting 2016 and the annual MAPP Summit. It´s always a great pleasure to meet my former classmates, or to get to know the current cohort of Mappsters, or some my of my predecessors.

If you are thinking about studying Positive Psychology at Penn, I urge you to visit this website: www.pennpositivepsych.org. It contains all the information on the program, e.g., the prerequisites, the schedule, and how to apply. You will also find some alumni stories (including mine).

If you´d like to know more about the study program: There´s an information session on campus on Nov. 10 and a virtual information session on Dec. 8.

Otherwise, the entries in this blog from day one all the way up to August 2014 serve as a documentation of my year in the MAPP 9 cohort (2013/2014). You can basically follow me an look over my shoulder while working towards that photo you see on the right (graduation day with Martin Seligman).

Enjoy – and maybe, we´ll meet one day at some future MAPP summit…

A book a Day (or at least: a Month or so…) keeps mental Enfeeblement away


By Johannes Jansson (GFDL or CC-BY-SA-3.0) via Wikimedia Commons.

Sorry for this mediocre headline…

I don´t know what your home looks like – but mine is crammed with books. I have several book shelves that are way to small to harbor them all. So I just put them everywhere. There are books in my study, in the living room, in the bedroom, in the kitchen, … , you get the picture. That´s why I really enjoyed reading about this study I came across a couple days ago:

A team of researchers investigated the connection of availability of books in a household and education of the inhabitants. They collected data from representative samples in 27 countries and basically looked at the educational attainment of the children, comparing those that come from families with a lot of books (>500) versus not so many books. What they found:

Children that grow up with many books stay in school three years longer on average – which obviously has something to say on their success in later life. This finding applies across all the countries investigated. What I find most interesting: the finding is independent of parental occupation, education, and social class.

Now go and buy a book. Or ten. Or a hundred. Do it. Now!

Books are not made for furniture, but there is nothing else that so beautifully furnishes a house.

(Henry Ward Beecher)

On Meaning and Life Satisfaction

If you are a regular reader of Mappalicious you know that I´m currently a student at University of Pennsylvania. Today, I need your help! For our statistics class, it is our duty to recreate an already existing study – so we need to gather some data.

Therefore, you could do me a really, really big favor: Please click on this link to fill out a short questionnaire. It´ll take you only about 5 – 10 minutes. This questionnaire is on meaning in life and life satisfaction.

Afterwards, you might want to read the original study. But please do this after you´ve filled in the questionnaire. Otherwise, your result may be biased.

Thank you very much in advance!


My Direction