Mythbusters

In this series academics shoot down popular myths on complex topics.

Klik hier om deze serie in het Nederlands te lezen: www.observantonline.nl/rijkderfabelen

Myth: Age is a heavy burden

Myth: Age is a heavy burden

Movement scientist Lex Verdijk would first like to clarify what he means by heavy burden. “That you can no longer carry out certain functional tasks or that it requires great effort. Shopping, climbing stairs, getting up from a chair.” Be...

Myth: Educational experiments disadvantage children who are not allowed to participate

Myth: Educational experiments disadvantage children who are not allowed to participate

“It doesn't matter whether it is about pre-school, primary, or higher education. People feel it is ethically irresponsible if educational innovations are not offered to all pre-school children, pupils or students. We, the researchers, shoul...

Myth: ME is a mental illness

Myth: ME is a mental illness

Patients are not just a little bit tired, but are permanently exhausted. Sleeping doesn't help much - if they can sleep properly at all - and they usually pay a high price for any physical exertion: remaining even more tired than they were, for d...

Myth: investments require knowledge

Myth: investments require knowledge

If you search Google for ‘myths and investments,’ you are spoilt for choice. Professor Peter Schotman turns his monitor 90 degrees and makes a selection from the first hits: five myths about sustainable investments; the myth about small s...

Myth: Make sure youngsters don't start smoking, that is the best tactic

Myth: Make sure youngsters don't start smoking, that is the best tactic

This myth is especially popular among politicians, says postdoc Gera Nagelhout, specialised in giving up smoking. Why? Because it makes for an easy score. Making schoolyards smoke-free zones? Of course, who doesn't want that? Raising the age limi...

Myth: Real poetry is deep and complex

Myth: Real poetry is deep and complex

Legal language is not easily associated with poetry. In days gone by, however, this was the way in which laws were announced, often presented rhythmically or by singing. “Knowledge had to be spread orally,” says Literature Researcher Anne...

Myth: older people work less hard

Myth: older people work less hard

You can't expect too much from older employees. Young ones are faster, more creative, and more intelligent. At least, that is the widespread idea. And with an ageing population and a retirement age that is constantly being pushed back, employers ...

Myth: COPD is an incurable disease

Myth: COPD is an incurable disease

“An incurable disease? We are inclined to think that it leads to death.” Nothing could be farther from the truth in the case of the lung disease COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease), says Annemie Schols, professor of Nutrition and...

Myth: Sex is a natural urge

Myth: Sex is a natural urge

“Many people think that sex has to be spontaneous, that it is artificial if you agree on a time in your schedule. Nonsense,” says Marieke Dewitte, psychologist and sexologist at Maastricht University. In her own practice, she sees couples...

Myth: The people rule

Myth: The people rule

Who is really the boss in a democracy? Ask ten random passers-by on the Maastricht Wednesday market, and most likely a popular answer will be “The voter.” Indeed, this idea is reflected in the origin of the word. Demos means people in anc...

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