Top Ten List: The Top 10 Reasons There Will Be No Top Ten List This Month

10. We were instructed by the department chair to get back to job fundamentals: teaching, research, and…I don’t know, we weren’t really listening, but top tens weren’t on the list. 

9. New editor’s contract has a strict no top ten list clause.

8. Our new faculty member, Brett Favre, was going to write it… but then he changed his mind and retired again.

7. We were tired of hearing Letterman whine about how we stole his idea. 

6. The Pink Flamingo Task Force for The Writing of Top Ten Lists and Other Items of Comedic Value (PFTFFTWOTTLAOIOCV, for short) took furlough this week. 

5. Two years worth of student hate mail is finally starting to take its toll on our confidence.

4. We spent all week trying to understand the Packers’ new defense (is it a 3-4 or 4-3?) and ran out of time (hey, at least we didn’t throw four interceptions this week).

3. Budget cuts mean that department newsletter editors are no longer paid per joke. 

2. We settled for a top nine instead.

Top Ten List: Your Instructors’ Favorite Exam Questions

We know that you’re all feeling a bit stressed in the homestretch of the Spring semester. Papers, exams, group project – the “to-do” list seems endless. The PF is here to help! We’ve compiled a list of instructors’ Top 10 favorite exam questions so you can get a head start of your studying. Enjoy!  


10. What is the meaning of life? Answer the question and give 10 specific examples from historical psychology experiments to support your response.

9. What did I say on the third day of the semester about 15 minutes into my lecture? Be specific.

8.  Design a study to test the hypothesis that all psychological phenomena are measureable. Make sure to label and operationally define your independent and dependent variables.

7. Explain what a “phenomenological theory lacking empirical support” is in three words or less.

6. Create a detailed diagram that pictorially depicts the relationship among memory, Freud, and cognitive dissonance.

5. Write an essay that says exactly what I want you to say in perfect grammar without me having to tell you the question.

4. What is human development? You have 2 minutes to provide a complete answer including citations, and you cannot use the words “human” or “development.”

3. How many words were there in Chapter 7 of your textbook? If you can list word 371, you will receive one point of extra credit.

2. Which of the following is the best answer to this multiple-choice question?




a. and b.

a. and b. or c.

a. or b., but not c.

a. and c., but only b. when the test is read with 3-D glasses

c. and b., but not a., except on alternate Tuesdays with a full moon.


And…your instructors’ #1 favorite exam question:


1. Repeat back every word I’ve said in the last 14 weeks. Make sure there are no spelling errors!


Top Ten Reasons We Know Spring Is Coming…Really

Even if it was -5 degrees last week and Jimmy the Groundhog predicted another six weeks of winter, we want you to know that spring is indeed on its way. Thus, here are the top ten reasons we know spring is coming.

10.  History is the best predictor of the future and, as far as we can remember, there was a spring last year.

9.  The temperature has gone up about 35 degrees since last week alone. At that rate, it will be about 240 degrees outside by mid-March.

8. New cases of the flu on campus are down, but new cases of senioritis among the May graduates are up, a sure sign of spring.

7. There’s so much dirt on the snow banks at this point that even though you haven’t seen it in months, you can almost remember what the ground looks like.

6. Your lame newsletter editors have created another Top 10 list about the weather, and that only happens every spring and fall – not in the winter!

5.  Dr. Martin only slipped on the ice three times on his walk in from the parking lot this morning. That is well below his winter average of six times per walk.   

4.  Brett Favre is planning on making his annual decision about retirement in the next couple of weeks.  That only happens in the spring…or summer…or sometimes in the fall…but never in the middle of winter.

3. The crews are hard at work on Highway 172, and you know what they say – there are only two seasons in Wisconsin: winter and road construction. If it’s road construction, then it can’t be winter, right?

2. It feels like the air conditioning has been turned on in the MAC Hall classrooms, so maybe it’s not almost spring…maybe we’re already heading to summer.

And, the #1 reason we know spring is coming…

1.  Spring break is only 768 hours away (not that we’re counting).

Top 10 List: The Top 10 Strategies for Getting Through the Last 5 Weeks of the Semester

It may or may not be hard for you to believe this, but there are only five weeks left in the semester (actually, at press time there were four and a half, but who’s counting?). We know this is a tough time for you with exams, papers, and projects all coming together and keeping you very busy. We’ve been pretty busy ourselves – so busy, in fact, that we didn’t have time for a full top ten list. Instead, we actually bring you the top eight strategies for getting through the last five weeks of the semester. 

8. Channel your inner Freud and see if denial works for you – The semester is over in 5 weeks? How can that be – it hasn’t even started yet! Was I supposed to be going to class all this time?

7. Remember your learning theory and try applying a fixed interval reinforcement schedule to shape your professors’ behavior. If Skinner could get a pigeon to play the piano, surely you can convince your professors to cancel all final papers and projects.

6. Practice unconditional positive regard. Just keep repeating to yourself: No matter how much homework they give me, no matter how angry I get at their test questions, or how miserable they make my life, I still value my professors as human beings…and should probably bring them candy.

5. Stop reading this newsletter!  You are wasting valuable space in your long-term memory that could be used for storing information you will need to get through the rest of the semester and help you as you take those pesky final ex…whoops, too late.

4. Remember, it’s all about cognitive appraisal.  Just repeat after us: I love exams and papers and registering for classes and homework and presentations and group projects…oh, forget it.  It’s never going to work.  What was Aaron Beck thinking? 

3. Combine what you know about child development and Freud and try using regression. You know, like this: I’m sorry – I don’t have time to read this stupid Top 10 list or work on the term paper that’s due next week. I’m too busy watching Scooby-Doo and playing with my toys. What’s a semester anyway?

2. Keep eating that Halloween candy.  The energy burst from all the sugar should help you get through the next week with no problems (you may want to double check with Dr. Gurung, our Health Psychologist, on this one). 

1. Ultimately, identifying the best strategy for getting through the last five weeks of the semester is an empirical question that can best be answered by a series of controlled studies.  Honors project anyone???