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Goose Bumps! The Science of Fear

Goose Bumps! The Science of Fear

Launch Tool

This resource from the California Science Center lets you explore the science of fear. You can choose to visit the exhibit or you can explore fear online by going to one or all of five sections, including:

  • Fear and the Brain is where you can learn about important brain areas and pathways that trigger fear, the way fear affects the entire body, and how we remember fearful events.
  • Fear in the Wild explains how the fear responses that you display (freeze, fight, and flight) are common throughout the animal kingdom.
  • Fear & the Media explores the interaction between culture and our collective fears.
  • The Fun Side of Fear looks at how some people enjoy getting scared by things like scary movies, wild amusement park rides, and extreme sports.
  • Dealing with Fear takes a look at the various ways that people can try to cope with fears of any severity.
In each of these sections, you can click on subsections to learn more about the concepts by viewing images, videos, and animations.

Going Further


For Educators

This resource would be particularly good for use in psychology and health classes. You can ask your students to brainstorm situations that cause fear and identify how the brain processes this information. Your students also could explore the similarities of fear responses with the feelings they have when riding thrill rides. You could identify as a class how people respond to fear and ways fear can help you. 

In addition, this site could be helpful in allowing students to understand their body's reactions to fear. You can use this site to help them explore the physiology of fear.

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Tool Details

Grades Themes Type Project 2061 Benchmarks
AAAS