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PSYC Midterm Exam #1

by: Samantha Wammack

PSYC Midterm Exam #1 PSYC 101

Samantha Wammack

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This covers all of the sections and topics that will be on the exam including Psychology as a Science, BioPSYC (Brain/neuro), Sensation and Perception, Memory, Consciousness, and Learning.
General Psychology
Brian Stone
Study Guide
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This 16 page Study Guide was uploaded by Samantha Wammack on Wednesday October 12, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to PSYC 101 at Boise State University taught by Brian Stone in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 55 views. For similar materials see General Psychology in Psychology (PSYC) at Boise State University.

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Date Created: 10/12/16
Exam #1 Study Guide Psychology as a Science Observable Behavior: Behavior Mind ~Observable~ ~Private/Subjective~ • Actions • Thoughts • Responses • Feelings • Stuff we can • Ideas measure • Consciousness Self-Report data: asking people about their inner life. Marker Variable: observable behavior that happens along with a subjective personal experience. (Example: dreaming. Cant see t heir dreams but can measure REM). Operational Definitions: • Setting out a clear process to make observations measurable in some standard way • Like a recipe. Specific instructions others can follow. Construct: the thing you’re trying to measure; main thing your interested in. (Depression, Happiness, learning, violence, etc.) Reliability: Consistent measurement. • Analogy: A clock that’s 5 minutes fast. Not accurate but always consistent (reliable). Construct Validity: Is our operational definition for a measurement really capturing what we’re interested in? • Example: “Does money buy happiness?”. Give the experimental group $50 and the control group play money. Did we really measure life happiness or just current mood? Early Psychology • Developed from philosophy and biology • Early PSYC wasn’t scientific. o Example 1: Structuralism § Used introspection à looking inward and giving a self- report on a mental experience. § *Sees picture of a pencil* “I am seeing a cylinder of yellow” o Example 2: Phrenology § Measuring the bumps on the skull tells you someone’s mental faculties like self-esteem, spirituality, etc. o Example 3: Most of Freud’s ideas. Different Types of Psychologists Counseling Psychology: helps people with normal problems like stress, relationship issues, grief, etc. Clinical Psychology: Helping (and researching) people with more significant problems or “disorders”. Psychiatrist: medical doctor (NOT psychologist) treating disorders medically. CAN prescribe drugs. Descriptive Research Case studies: in-depth description of another’s behaviors. 2 • Used to study effects of traumatic brain injury, people with rare syndromes, or to try an unusual treatment. • Downside: a single person may not be representative, researcher may be biased, conclusion may not apply to others si tuation. Naturalistic Observation: to just observe and describe; non-experimental. • Example: Sit in front of Riverfront and observe % of males and females that open the doors for others. Correlational Research: measures degree of relationship between two variables. • Claims of causation (X causes Y, A increases B, C makes people do D, etc.) • Always alternate explanations though. Third variable problem: if we observe both variables, we can’t be sure that one exactly causes the other. The connection could be a th ird variable that causes them both to vary together. Experimental Studies Experiment: only way to accurately test something to avoid the 3rd variable problem. • Manipulate and control the situation. Independent Variable: the thing you manipulate (change) Dependent Variable: the thing you are measuring (NOT changing) Random Assignment: Use a random procedure (could be a coin flip) to assign your participants equally into different groups. • Each person has an equal chance of ending up in any group. • Best way to find evidence of causation. 3 Cofound Variable: extra variable that affects the results (alternate explanations). Headlines (Causation vs. Correlation) Causation: one variable causes the other. Correlational: relationship between two sets of variables used to describe/predict information. Biological Psychology Nervous Systems Central Nervous System(CNS): brain and spinal cord Peripheral nervous system: • Somatic NS: (sensory and motor) (Soma=body) • Autonomic NS: (involuntary) Think of Auto- as automatic. o Sympathetic NS: § Fight or flight § Arousal § Fast heartbeat, slowed digestion. o Parasympathetic NS: § Homeostasis § Rest, relax § Slow heartbeat, active digestion Parts of a Neuron 1. Input comes into the dendrites. 2. They send information to the cell body (soma). 3. That sends information down the axon and out the terminal buttons(s) at the end of the axon branch(es). 4 • Some axons are covered in myelin sheath which helps send signals faster. (Like soap on a slip and slide) Synapse: small salt watery space between the neurons (Neurons DON’T touch.) Neurotransmitters (chemical messengers): when the signal reaches the terminal button(s), they release the neurotransmitters to float across the synapse (like a boat across the sea). Receptors: “Lock” (receptor) and “Key” (neurotransmitters) metaphor. Some of the neurotransmitters fit into the receptors in the next neurons dendrites. (Only some boats will fit into the docking station). Action Potential: if the cell body receives enough positive charge, it “fires” an electrical signal down the axon. • A neuron’s resting charge is Negative (-) • When the ion channels open, it lets in a bunch of Sodium (positive +) . • If enough (+) charge builds, the cell fires. • Action potentials are all or nothing. Brain Brain stem/cerebellum: Basic life functions (breathe, sleep, movement, etc.) • Location: Bottom/base of brain. Connects to spinal cord. Limbic System: (Emotion/drive/reward) • Amygdala: Emotions/fear/rage • Hypothalamus: Controls hormones, homeostasis • Hippocampus: New memories (think of a hippo walking on campus) Cerebral Cortex: complex stuff, higher thought perception, skilled action. Made up of 4 lobes. 5 • Occipital Lobe: vision (think of ocular lenses) • Temporal Lobe: Hearing, language, categories (located by the temple/ears) • Parietal Lobe: Spatial information (touch, body position) • Frontal Lobe: judgment, planning, personality, and voluntary movement. o Each lobe has a left and right hemisphere connected by the Corpus Callosum (assists both sides in communicating). o All of them are contralateral except smell (olfaction). o Example: Looking at something in the right vision field…processes it in the left occipital lobe. Behavioral vs. Cognitive Neuroscience Behavioral neuroscience: record, alter, or damage brain areas in animals to see what brain areas are affected. Cognitive Neuroscience: study brain damage in humans or scan the brain during cognitive tasks. Genes (Nature) and Environment (Nurture) • Both contribute to your psychological traits/behavior. • They both interact o Example: Mom’s stress or depression during/after pregnancy can affect how genes relating to mood/stress activate in the child. o Environment determines whether or not a gene is turned “on” or “off” 6 Sensation and Perception Sensation: the stimulation of sensory neurons by a physical stimulus. Perception: the interpretation of a sensory neural signal as an experience after it gets processed in the brain. • Example: Round blob of red…” I must be seeing a red ball!” Transduction: the process of which physical signals are converted into neural signals to go to the brain to become interpreted. Doctrine of specific nerve energies: the nature of perception (whether the experience is visual, auditory, touch, etc.) is defined by the neural pathway over which the sensory information is carried. • Close eyes and lightly press on eyelids. • Mechanical pressure from touch is what stimulated nerves in your eye causing them to fire. • But we perceive it as a visual experience (even though it’s not caused by light) because those sensory neurons in the eye lead back into the occipital lobe. Vision (Occipital) Rods: Night vision (dim light), black and white (no color), big picture/motion, peripheral vision Cones: day/light vision, color vision, details, Fovea-what we focus on • 3 types of cones: sensitive to wavelengths that we perceive as red, green, or blue. Visual pathway: retina à optic nerve à thalamus à V1 (primary visual cortex) • Later goes to ventral/dorsal streams. 7 Ventral Stream: The “what” pathway. Goes from V1 to temporal lobe. • Helps identify objects. • Damage to the ventral stream messes with recognition. Dorsal Stream: the “where/how” pathway. Goes from V1 to parietal lobe. • Helps space processing, movement, and reaching. • Damage to the dorsal stream causes trouble localizing things in space, and other troubles with space/action. Auditory (Temporal) Auditory pathway: outer ear à middle ear bones à cochlea à thalamus à A1 (primary auditory cortex) Physical “sound waves”: waves of air pressure • Frequency: pitch. How we distinguish different people’s words/voices and lets us locate sound. (Think of a person that talks frequently) • Amplitude: loudness. (think of amps) Smell (Olfaction) Olfactory pathway: ORNs (Olfactory Receptor Neurons) à Olfactory Bulb (Located in the frontal lobe) • Olfaction is the only sense that does NOT go through the thalamus (sensory gateway). • NOT CONTRALATERAL!! Pheromones: no concrete evidence that pheromones effect a humans behavior. Humans do not have a working vomeronasal organ like most mammals and insects do. 8 Taste (Gustatory) Gustation pathway: taste receptor cells on taste buds à thalamus à primary gustatory cortex (part of the frontal lobe like the olfactory) Flavor: combination of gustation + olfaction + texture (taste + smell + touch) Somatosensation (the body senses) (Soma=body) • Touch (including temperature and pain) and proprioception (body position/balance) Touch pathway: touch receptors à thalamus à S1 (Primary Somatosensory Cortex) • Located in the parietal lobe Touch Receptors: • Mechanical touch receptors: detects pressure, vibration, texture • Temperature touch receptors: responds to up/down changes not actual temperature. • Pain touch receptors: free nerve endings detect damage • Pleasant touch receptors: free nerve endings fire for slow moving, light touch o Pain/pleasure seem to activate same brain structures • Internal status: detection of sensations in internal organs and guts. o Example: full stomach, thirst, respiratory changes, vascular changes, etc. Memory Basic Model: Input à Sensory Memory à STM (aka working memory) à LTM 9 Duration of: Sensory Memory: 1 sec. (or less) STM (Short Term Memory): 15-30 sec. LTM (Long Term Memory): Lots of information (unlimited?) held for a long duration. • Attention is important to sensory memory! o What you attend to gets put into STM. Rehearsal: mentally repeating information to keep it in STM. Out-loud (overt rehearsal) or to yourself (covert rehearsal). Chunking: subsets of elements that meaningfully cluster together • Example: the pieces on a chessboard…expert it makes sense…non - expert it makes no sense. • Example 2: Random sequence of words vs. a true sentence. Proactive Interference: (forward-acting) • Old info makes new info difficult to remember correctly. Retroactive Interference: (backwards acting) • New info makes old info difficult to remember correctly. Consolidation: Laying down a new memory in LTM. Hippocampus: located in the temporal lobe, it helps create new memories. Reconsolidation: retrieving a memory can make it “fragile” so it needs to re- consolidate. • Each time you remember an event from LTM, you strengthen it, but you may also end up altering the memory each time. 10 Long Term Potentiation (LTP): When the action potential of one cell activates another cell, the synaptic connection between them gets stronger (and/or new synapses are formed). Anterograde vs. Retrograde Amnesia Anterograde Amnesia: Can’t form new explicit memories due to hippocampus damage. • Example: 50 First Dates Retrograde Amnesia: Can’t recall old memories (from before the damage). Types of LTM Explicit: (conscious/intentional) • Semantic: Knowledge/facts, “knowing that”, Example…3+3=6 • Episodic: Events you experienced, “mental time travel” to past events or imagine future, Example…” This one time at band camp” (Having an episode) Implicit: (unconscious/automatic) • Procedural: Skills (motor/cognitive), “knowing how”, Example…tying shoes • Priming: Previous activation of a word or concept makes it easier to remember related concepts, Example…” old people” Encoding/Retrieval Tips Elaboration: make connections to something about yourself, other concepts/ideas, or things. • Helps a lot during encoding. Encoding Specificity: Memory is best when context and info available during encoding is also present during retrieval. 11 • Example: silent vs. noisy environment when studying and sil ent vs. noisy environment when testing. State-Dependent learning: memory is best when inner state (mood etc.) during encoding matched inner-state during retrieval. • Example: Drunk vs. sober studying then drunk vs. sober test Consciousness Consciousness: awareness of self and world. Cognitive Unconsciousness: All of the automatic mental processes that you are not (currently) aware of or experiencing. • Example: learning new things by exposure without realizing it. • Blindsight: Eyes are fine but Area V1 (in occipital lobe) is damaged so no visual experience at all. • Subliminal messages: occur so fast that they can’t be consciously perceived. Stages of Sleep 1. Awake ß Beta waves 2. Relaxed/drowsy ß Alpha (think all (=Alpha) the time…drowsy all the time) 3. Stage 1 ß theta 4. Stage 2 5. Stage 3 ß Delta (think Tri (3) delta) REM (Rapid Eye Movement): when most dreaming happens. • Happens in cycles between deep sleep throughout the night. • More REM and less stage 3 deep sleep throughout the night. 12 Why do we sleep? We don’t really know yet but some ideas include: • Memory consolidation • Save energy/calories • Protection from dangers in the night • Regenerate myelin sheath • Threat/instinct rehearsal (body practices automatic physiological reactions to threats, mating etc. in a no-risk environment.) Why do we dream? We don’t know but some ideas include: • (Most accepted is…) Activation-Synthesis model: during sleep there’s a random neural firing (not brain-dead), and the brain always automatically interprets neural input as perceptions so here it tries to construct perceptions out of random firing. • (Most likely not Freud but…) symbolic bubbling up of suppressed thoughts/urges. Psychoactive Drugs • another altered state of consciousness. • External substances that act on the nervous system to alter consciousness, modify perception, or change mood/thought. • They can mimic or block neurotransmitters. The 4 types of drugs include: 1. Depressants: • Reduces CNS (Central nervous system) activity • Often relaxing • “Downer” • Examples: Alcohol, Benzos, Ambien 13 2. Stimulants: • Increases CNS activity • Arousing/exciting • “Uppers” • Examples: Cocaine, Amphetamines, ecstasy, caffeine, nicotine 3. Narcotics: • Act on the brain system that normally blocks pain or gives sense of well-being after injury or excersion. • Examples: Morphine, Heroine, Oxycotine 4. Hallucinogens (think of the word hallucinate) • Alter perception and consciousness • Often creating hallucinations: o Waking, involuntary perceptions in the absence of a real physical stimulus. • Examples: LSD, Psilocybin (mushrooms), ketamine. • Lots of traditionary religious use historically Marijuana (Cannabis)???: • Odd mix of depressant, stimulant, and hallucinogen. • Acts on the body’s natural cannabinoid system involved in regulating appetite, pain, mood, and memory. Tolerance: If some drugs are taken for a long time, a larger dose is needed to feel the same effect. 14 Physical Dependence: Some drugs (if taken a long time or built a tolerance) cause negative physical symptoms of withdrawal after abruptly stopping or lowering use. Psychological Dependence: craving or desire for a drug after sto pping or lowering use; a feeling of need without the associated physical dependence. • Controversy whether this counts as “addiction”. “Rat Park” study Bruce Alexander “Rat Park” compared: 1. Rats in crappy, sad, typical lab cage. 2. Rats in a nice “Rat Park” cage with others to play with and room to exercise. He found: 1. Rats in lab cage always went for the drug filled water instead of the plain water. 2. Rats in “Rat Park” went for the plain water even if previously forced to drink drug water. Conclusion: A big part of addiction is the personal and social context. Learning (Classical) Unconditioned Stimulus (US) reliably produces a natural reaction called Unconditioned Response (UR). Examples: • Puff of air at eye (US) produces blinking (UR) • Sees nudity (US) gets aroused (UR) • Tastes sour (US) makes face (UR) • Dog sees food (US) then salivates (UR) 15 16


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