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April 8, 2013 | by  | in Opinion |
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Mad Science – I Get By with a Little Help from My Friends

You’ve been through the dramatic and cut-throat elections for Class Rep, the distribution of the sacrosanct course outline, and the underlying
psychological warfare that goes into guarding ‘your seat’ in tutorials. But alas, you have underestimated how quickly the swarm of assignment-related deadlines would creep up on you. Let science evaluate four common coping mechanisms:

Coffee
Number one sign you’re addicted to coffee: you suffer déjà brew. Researchers have spilled the beans on caffeine, finding that the alertness
caffeine addicts experience is actually just the reversal of the fatiguing effects of acute caffeine withdrawal.

Furthermore, even if you cut back on the cream and sugar, your coffee still isn’t ‘guilt-free’. A Marine Pollution Bulletin study found that elevated concentrations of caffeine in the Pacific Ocean are causing mussels to exhibit cellular stress. Luckily, scientists are coming to the rescue, with a strain of caffeine-addicted E. coli bacteria having been recently developed in order to break caffeine down into friendlier compounds. No news as to whether the bacteria are brewding due to withdrawal yet.

Nocturnalism
A Thinking and Reasoning study found that people who were tested during their least optimal time of day (when they were most tired) were more effective at solving puzzles that required creative thinking and insight than when they were most alert. So for most people, becoming a temporary night owl is something you should give a hoot about, as it could be the key to obtaining the perfectly acceptable grade you deserve. Alternatively, those of us who have discovered the internet may be better off sticking with 10am ingenuity.

Obsessive Tidying
Obsessive tidying competes with the internet and procrastibaking as the preferred method of student procrastination. If you have a sufficient
amount of mess to warrant obsessive tidying, congratulations are in (dis-)order! Anecdotal Yahoo! Answers evidence overwhelmingly suggests that this is a sign that you are more intelligent and creative. If you think you’ll study better in tidy surroundings, you’re gonna have a bad time. German researchers found, in a series of linked studies, that people thought more clearly when surrounded by visual and mental clutter.

Group Study
A Brigham Young University study found that people were worse at solving problems in groups with those they felt the most comfortable, and instead found groups that contained a “socially distinct newcomer” made better decisions. So make sure to invite a random to your clique.

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