AMES, Iowa – Parents have a new source for sound advice on raising kids and teens — the Science of Parenting, a new monthly radio program podcast from Iowa State University Extension.
The Science of Parenting offers research-based parenting advice from experts across the country, said program host Douglas Gentile, an associate professor of psychology and extension specialist at Iowa State. Calling parenting “a strange and wondrous journey,” Gentile promises the advice will be based on scientific research — and won’t be boring.
Co-host Mike Murray brings the “parent-on-the-street perspective” to the program.
“Doug’s the scientist — I’m not — but we’re both parents. Doug has two kids in a blended family. My wife and I have three kids; so I guess we’re ‘unblended,’” Murray said.
“In any case, when you have children, they send you home from the hospital with this brand new human being and you ask, ‘where’s the owner’s manual?’” Murray said. “You get home, and what do you do?”
“Listen to the Science of Parenting!” Gentile replied. Each program will feature an expert discussing a hot topic in parenting, the latest research and advice. The featured experts, along with Gentile and Murray, will explain the research in easy-to-understand terms.
Gentile said listeners will hear scientific information that could help them make parenting easier and better, and improve their children’s lives.
Added Murray, “Our goal is to show that even the most serious topics don’t have to depress parents.”
Upcoming topics for the Science of Parenting radio program podcasts include cyberbullying, childhood obesity and effective parenting strategies. Listeners can expect to learn about a broad array of parenting topics as well as Gentile’s research on children and media.
Gentile received his master’s degree and doctorate in child psychology from the Institute of Child Development at the University of Minnesota. He received his bachelor’s degree in psychology from the State University of New York at Buffalo.
“I study what can be defined broadly as media effects,” Gentile said. “I am interested in both the positive and negative effects of media on children and adults, including media violence, video games, advertising, educational media, news/propaganda, virtual reality and music.”
Quipped Murray, “I study what can be defined broadly as how to get your children to pick up their socks.”
Murray is a mechanical engineer with Iowa State University Facilities Planning and Management. He received his bachelor’s degree from Iowa State. Murray said when he “served time” on the Ames Community School Board of Directors, he was exposed to many different educational theories and remains interested in education.
Each month a new, 30-minute Science of Parenting program will be available for free download from the Science of Parenting website. Blog posts and other research-based parenting information also are available.
[PHOTO] Associate Professor Douglas Gentile, right, and “parent on the street” Mike Murray co-host the Science of Parenting radio program podcasts from Iowa State University Extension.