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UO / Psychology / PSY 201 / What is psychological science?

What is psychological science?

What is psychological science?


School: University of Oregon
Department: Psychology
Course: Mind and Brain >3
Professor: Dassonville p
Term: Fall 2015
Cost: 50
Name: MIDTERM: Chapters 1-3 Study Guide
Description: Study guide for the first midterm.
Uploaded: 10/17/2015
12 Pages 16 Views 17 Unlocks

Chapter 1 

What is psychological science?

Terms to Know:

• Pychological Science: scientific study of the mind, brain, and behavior. It uses objective  measures to determine natural laws that govern activities of the mind and behaviors it  produces.  

• Biases in psychological reasoning  

◦Confirmation bias: ignoring evidence that doesn't support your beliefs  ◦Failure to judge source credibility: when sources refer to expertise vs. evidence  ◦Misunderstanding statistics: going with your gut  

◦Seeing relationships that do not exist: making something out of nothing  ◦Inaccurately using relative comparisons: word choice matters  

◦Hindsight bias: Accepting after-the-fact explanations  

◦Heuristics: Taking mental shortcuts  

◦Self-serving bias: failing to see our own inadequacies  

• Nature/Nurture Debate: Argument concerning whether psychological characteristics are  biologically innate or acquired through experience  

What is biases in psychological reasoning?

• Mind/Body Problem: Are the mind and body separate and distinct, or is the mind the physical  brain's subjective experience? What is the difference? The brain is the physical meat; the  mind is the outcome of the mental activity  

◦Dualism: the belief that the world is composed of two separate substances; mental  substance (soul) and physical substance (body)  We also discuss several other topics like valinda is an american child who took the assessments for the timss three years ago when she was in the fourth grade. when the mathematics achievement results were calculated, how did scores for her american cohort compare with scores for children around

‣ Plato: believed that the body is from the material world, and the soul is from the  world of ideas and is therefore immortal  

‣ Descartes: formed the argument for dualism that the external soul controls the body  through the pineal gland  

◦Monism: the belief that the world can be explained by only one category of substance  ‣ Hippocrates: believe that the brain is the seat of thoughts and emotions  ‣ Aristotle: believed that the heart is the seat of emotions (Valentines day), and the  brain is just a "cooling organ"  

What is phrenology?

We also discuss several other topics like pat kinkade

‣ Hobbes & Materialism: nothing exists except matter and energy. All human thought  and behavior can be explained in terms of physical processes in the brain.  • Phrenology: study (and feeling) of the structure of the skull to determine someone's  character and mental capacity. NOT A VALID PROCEDURE.  

◦Franz Gall: founder of phrenology.  

‣ Believed that brain is the organ of the mind (Monist view)  

‣ The size of a region in the brain is a measure of its power  

‣ The shape of the brain is determined by development of various organs  ‣ Skull takes its shape from the brain, so the surface of the skull can be read to  describe one's character  

• Modularity of mental function: mental functions can be divided into separate categories or  independent processes  

• Localization of function: bumps may not reveal what phrenologists thought they did, but  there is still some evidence that certain areas of the brain contribute to certain tasks  ◦Broca's aphasia: when one has difficulty speaking, but can comprehend

‣ Occurs when there is damage to a patient's left half of the brain (left inferior frontal  gyrus)  

‣ Still able to write  

◦Wernicke's aphasia: sometimes called "Jargon Aphasia" because patients can speak, but  the content is meaningless (cannot comprehend)  

‣ Associated with damage to the superior temporal gyrus  

‣ Cannot read and write  

• Introspectionism: study of conscious mental events by "looking within" (observing and  recording one's thoughts and experiences)  We also discuss several other topics like uo psych sona

◦Wilhelm Wundt: reasoned that mental events take time, and the times can be measured  ◦Limitations  

‣ Variability: one person's impressions are different from another's  

‣ Verification: misperceptions can't be detected and disagreements cannot be  resolved  

‣ Relies on consciousness. Many interesting mental events are unconscious  • Structuralism (Tichener): Uses introspectionism to break apart and examine individual  components of conscious experience. Breaks down conscious experience to different  sensations  


‣ Consciousness is not just the sum of its parts  

• Functionalism: concerned with the adaptive function of mind and behavior  ◦William James  

◦Evolutionary theory: views the history of a species in terms of the inherited, adaptive  value of physical characteristics, mental activity, and behavior  We also discuss several other topics like danielle thomas umass

◦Adaptations: the physical characteristics or abilities that increase the chances of survival  and reproduction, and are therefore are more likely to be passed on to future  generations  

◦Natural selection: the idea that those who inherit characteristics that help them adapt to  and survive in their particular environments are more likely to survive  

• Gestalt theory: based on the idea that the whole of a personal experience is more than the  sum of its parts  

• Psychoanalysis: developed by Sigmund Freud. Attempts to bring the contents of the  unconscious into conscious awareness so that conflicts can be resolved  We also discuss several other topics like larco greece

• Behaviorism: emphasizes the study of observable environmental effects on behavior  ◦B.F. Skinner  

◦Skinner Box (operant chamber): displays operant conditioning. Trained mice to hit a  button in order to receive food.  


‣ Insufficiency: cannot fully account for things such as creativity, or the complexity of  human behaviors  

‣ Limited science to only observable things  

• Cognitive Psychology: study of mental functions such as intelligence, thinking, language,  memory, and decision making  

• Cognitive Neuroscience: study of neural mechanisms that underlie thought, learning,

perception, language and memory  

• Social Psychology: study of how people influence other people's thoughts, feelings, and  behavior  

• Levels of analysis  

◦Biological: how the physical body contributes to mind and behavior  

◦Individual: individual differences in personality and the mental processes that affect how  people see the world  

◦Social: how group contexts affect how people interact and influence each other  ◦Cultural: how people's thoughts, feelings, and actions are similar/different across various  cultures  


1. What are some specific examples of the biases in psychological reasons that you have  encountered?  

A. When there are advertisements about a product on TV and they keep referring to an  authoritative figure instead of giving evidence that a product works (source credibility);  When I get an iClicker question wrong and then see the right answer, I think "I knew  that" (hindsight bias)  If you want to learn more check out What is the difference between oral prenups and written prenups?

2. What is the difference between monist and dualist viewpoints?  

A. Dualists believed that the mind was separated from the body, but monists believed that  they do not exist separately  

3. How did Descartes dualistic theory explain how the soul could communicate with the body?  A. He believed that the external soul controls the body through the pineal gland.  4. In what way way Gestaltism a backlash to Structuralism?  

A. Gestaltism was based on the idea that the sum of the whole is more than just the parts,  while structuralism was based on the idea that experiences can be broekn down into  basic parts.  

5. How can apparent motion be used to demonstrate the limitations of structuralism?  A. An example of apparent motion (phi): the idea of the ball "bouncing" (Gestalt view) vs.  two dots just being shown rapidly in two different locations (structuralism view). With  structuralism, all they believe is a dot shown in two different spots vs. something more  meaningful like a ball bouncing.  

6. In what was was Behaviorism a backlash to Introspectionism?  

A. It was a backlash to introspection because introspectionists study unobservable mental  effects while behaviorism aims to study observable environmental effects.  7. What are some of the problems of Introspectionism, Structuralism, and Behaviorism that  limit their effectiveness?  

A. Limitations of Introspectionism: Variability (one person's impressions are different from  another's), verification (misperceptions can't be detected and disagreements cannot  be resolved), relies on consciousness (Many interesting mental events are  unconscious); Limitations of Structuralism: Consciousness is not just the sum of its  parts; Limitations of Behaviorism: Insufficiency (cannot fully account for things such as  creativity, or the complexity of human behaviors), limited science to only observable  things

8. How do Cognitive Psychology & Cognitive Neuroscience treat the mind/body differently  than does Behaviorism (with respect to the "black box" of the mind/brain?  A. Cognitive science uses behavior to infer what was going on inside the "black box" and  uses knowledge of what is going on in the "black box" to help understand the  constraints on conscious experience and behavior and considers mental processing as  the software of the mind. Cognitive neuroscience uses behavior to infer what is going  on inside the brain, and uses knowledge what is going on in the brain to help  understand the constraints on conscious experience and behavior and considers the  brain as the hardware of the mind.  

9. Which principles of phrenology apply to modern cognitive neuroscience? Which do not  apply?  

A. There are parts of the brain that function for certain tasks, but feeling lumps on the skull  cannot determine personality.  

10. How do modern behaviors reflect the evolutionary pressures of our ancestors?  A. Each generation changes in one way or another because our society, culture, and  surroundings are always changing so we have to learn how to adapt. Modern  behaviors  

11. How do cultural norms affect mental processes and behaviors?  

A. There is always a certain way people are told to act (or not to act) in a certain culture  that affect our minds (what we think) and also how we behave.  

12. How do the biological, individual, social, and cultural levels of analysis in psychology differ?  A. Biological: how the physical body contributes to mind and behavior; Individual: individual differences in personality and the mental processes that affect how people  see the world; Social: how group contexts affect how people interact and influence  each other; Cultural: how people's thoughts, feelings, and actions are similar/different  across various cultures  

Chapter 2  

Terms to Know:  

• Scientific method: a systematic procedure of observing and measuring phenomena. Used to  achieve the goals of description, prediction, control, explanation. (Theory --> hypothesis -->  research --> data)  

• Theory: An explanation or model of how a psychological phenomenon works. Based on  empirical evidence  

• Hypothesis: A specific, testable prediction, narrower than the theory it's based on  • Research: A scientific process that involves careful collection of data  

• Data: Results of an objective and verifiable test of a hypothesis  

• Replication: Repitition of a research study to confirm the results  

• Descriptive studies/research: involves observing behavior to describe that behavior  objectively and systematically  

• Case studies: A descriptive research method that involves close examination of a specific  unusual person or organization  

• Observational studies  

◦Reactivity: occurs when knowledge that one is being observed alters the behavior that is

being observed  

◦Observer bias: errors in observation that occur because of an observer's expectations  ◦Experimenter expectancy effect: actual change in the behavior of group being observed  due to the expectations of the observer  

• Self-report methods: Methods of data collection where people are asked to provide  information about themselves (surveys or questionnaires)  

• Correlational studies: research method that describes and predicts how variables are related  ◦Directionality problem: when researchers find a relationship between two variables, but  cannot determine which variable may have caused changes in the other variable (ex.  Does less sleep cause more stress, OR, does more stress cause less sleep?)  ◦Third variable problem (confound): problem that occurs when researcher cannot directly  manipulate variables, and therefore, cannot be sure that another variable isn't the actual  cause of the differences (ex. Texting while driving --> dangerous driving; risk taking -->  texting while driving and risk taking --> dangerous driving: risk taking is the 3rd variable)  • Experiment: a research method that tests causal hypotheses by manipulating and measuring  variables  

• Control group: participants in an experiment who receive no treatment, or a treatment  unrelated to the variable being investigated  

• Experimental groups: participants in an experiment who receive treatment  • Independent variables: variable that is manipulated  

• Dependent variables: the variable that gets measured and is dependent on the independent  variable  

• Confound: a third factor that affects a dependent variable  

• Population: Everyone in the group the experimenter is interested in  

• Sample: A subset of the population  

◦Random sample: choosing people from the population at random so you have a more  diverse group of people to test  

◦Convenience sample: choosing people from the population who are easiest to reach  ◦Selection bias: unintended differences between participants in different groups; could  be caused by non-random assignment to groups  

• Institutional review boards (IRBS): groups of people who review proposed research to ensure  that it meets the accepted standards of science and does not harm the physical and  emotional well-being of research participants  

• Informed consent: If a study has any risk, participants MUST be informed before they agree to  participate  

• Construct validity: The extent to which a variable measures what it's supposed to measure  • External validity: The degree to which the findings of a study can be generalized to other  people or situations  

• Internal validity: The degree to which the effects that are observed in an experiment are due  to the independent variable and not confounds

• Reliability vs. accuracy  

◦Reliability: degree to which a measure is stable and consistent over time ◦Accuracy: degree to which an experimental measure is free from error

• Descriptive statistics: statistics that summarize data collected in a study

• Central tendency: a measure that represents the typical response or behavior of a group as a  whole  

◦Mean: the arithmetic average of a data set  

◦Median: the number that falls exactly halfway between highest and lowest values in a  data set  

◦Mode: the number that occurs most often in a data set  

• Variability: how widely dispersed the values are from each other and from the mean  ◦Range: (largest value-smallest value)  

◦Standard deviation: average difference between each score and the mean score  • Correlation: measures the strength and direction of the relationship between two variables  (Ranges from -1 to +1)  

• Causation: the extent to which one thing causes another thing to happen  • Inferential statistics: a set of assumptions and procedures used to evaluate the likelihood that  an observed effect is present in the population from which the sample was drawn  


1. What are the goals of psychological science?  

A. Description: Detail or catalogue mental processes and behaviors to understand  information better; Understanding: Develop explanations (theories) of how the mind  works; Prediction: Use theories to predict behaviors and thoughts, then test to see if  they're correct; Application: Apply theories to influence behavior and thought  

2. Describe how the scientific method can be used to gain an understanding of some  psychological issue.  

A. When there is a psychological issue, first a theory is made, then a hypothesis, then  research is done, and then when you receive and collect data, it gives you a better  understanding of that issue.  

3. What makes for a good theory?  

A. A good theory needs to be falsifiable (possible to test hypothesis and prove it's  incorrect, so then it can be revised), and has to provide a wide variety of testable  hypothesis. It should also be simple.  

4. Describe the steps in an experiment.  

A. Steps in an experiment:  

1. Form a theory  

2. Form a specific hypothesis  

3. Design a test of the hypothesis:  

A. Variables: A variable dimension that can be objectively measured.  

a. Independent variable: the manipulated variable, hypothesized to be  the cause of the predicted effect  

b. Dependent variable: the measured variable, hypothesized to be  

affected by the independent variable  

4. Perform the test and observe results (collect data)  

5. Critical evaluation of the results (analyze and interpret the data)  

6. Revise the theory (if necessary)  

7. Communicate findings in scientific journals and presentations

5. Given a description of an experiment, be able to identify the independent and dependent  variables.  

A. The independent variable is the manipulated variable, hypothesized to be the cause of  the predicted effect. The dependent variable is the measured variable, hypothesized to  be affected by the independent variable.  

6. How does random selection prevent selection bias?  

A. If a random selection is chosen, the researcher does not know who is going to be in  that sample, so selection bias is prevented.  

7. Given data from an experiment, be able to interpret them.

8. Explain how the scientific method is self-correcting.  

A. It is self-correcting because if the test results do not prove the theory is correct, the  theory is then revised until it is correct.  

9. What does a negative (or positive, or zero) correlation imply about the relationship between  two variables?  

A. A negative correlation means that two variables move in opposite directions (ex. the  more people exercise, the less they weigh). A positive correlation is when two variables  either both increase or both decrease together (ex. people with higher ACT scores  have higher GPAs/people with lower ACT scores have lower GPAs). A zero correlation  is when one variable is not related to the other variable (zero correlation between  gender and intelligence)  

10. Why does a correlation not imply causation?  

A. Correlation does not imply causation because there could be a third factor (a  confound) that plays a role in the other two. Even if there is a causal relationship, its  direction is often uncertain. It could be a random relationship that only appears  correlated.

11. What is the difference between descriptive and inferential statistics?  

A. Descriptive statistics are actual numerical data sets while inferential statistics is a set of  assumptions.  

Chapter 3  

Terms to Know:  

• Neurons: information processing/transmitting cells of the nervous system  • Dendrites: Branchlike extensions of the neuron that detect information from other neurons  • Cell body (soma): Site in the neuron where information from thousands of other neurons are  collected and integrated  

• Axon: long narrow outgrowth of a neuron by which information is transmitted to other  neurons  

• Synaptic terminals: At the end of the axon  

• Terminal buttons: At the ends of axons. Small nodules that release chemical signals from the  neuron into the synapse  

• Synapse: Gap between the axon of a "sending" neuron and the dendrites of a "receiving"  neuron  

• Synaptic cleft: The space that neurotransmitters travel across to get to the postsynaptic  neuron

• Presynaptic neuron: the neuron that is transmitting the information to other neurons  • Postsynaptic neuron: the neuron that is receiving the information from the presynaptic  neuron  

• Cell membrane: the fatty barrier covering the neuron  

• Intracellular fluid: fluid inside the cell membrane  

• Extracellular fluid: the fluid outside the cell membrane

• Ions (sodium, potassium)  

• Resting membrane potential (-70 mV)  

◦Diffusion forces: move ions from an area of high concentration to low concentrations  ◦Electrostatic forces: two ions with positive charge/negative charge will repel, but one ion  with a positive charge and one with a negative charge will be attracted  

◦Sodium-potassium pump: pumps 3 Na+ (sodium) out of the neuron for every 2 K+  (potassium) into the neuron  

• Action potentials: a brief, sudden reversal of the membrane potential. It moves like a wave  down the axon  

• Vesicles: stores neurotransmitters that are then released from the synaptic terminal to the  receiving neuron  

• Neurotransmitter: a molecule that carries the neuronal signal across the synaptic cleft  • Exocytosis: when neurotransmitters are released from the presynaptic cell into the synaptic  cleft, and then into the postsynaptic cell  

• Postsynaptic receptor: receptors on the postsynaptic neuron that receives neurotransmitters  • Neurotransmitter-dependent ion channel=receptor  

◦The neurotransmitter is like the key;the receptor is like the lock.  

• Excitatory postsynaptic potential (EPSP): depolarization; necessary to generate an action  potential  

• Inhibitory postsynaptic potential (IPSP): hyperpolarization

• Reuptake: neurotransmitter is pulled back into the presynaptic neuron for reuse (and thereby  stopping its activity)  

• Deactivating enzymes: when an enzyme destroys the neurotransmitter in the synapse  • Voltage-dependent ion channels: programmed to open only for a certain period of time  • Myelin: Fatty substance produced by glia to insulate long axons  

• Nodes of Ranvier: small gaps of exposed axon, between the segments of myelin sheath,  where action potentials take place  

• Multiple sclerosis: autoimmune disease in which the body's immune system attacks myelin as  it would a foreign invader  

◦Causes abnormal timing of action potentials in affected neurons, leading to sensory,  motor and cognitive deficits  

• Doctrine of specific nerve energies: particular information represented by an action potential  depends on which cell is firing and depends on location of the neuron firing  ◦visual neuron=vision  

◦motor neuron=motor command  


• Rate law: variations in magnitude of a signal are represented by the firing rate of the neuron  • Autoreceptors: monitor how many neurotransmitters have been released into the synaps

• Agonist: drug that facilitates the effects of the neurotransmitter on postsynaptic cell  • Antagonist: drug that decreases the effects on the postsynaptic cell  

• Glutamate: Glutamatergic neurons  

◦most common excitatory neurotransmitter  

◦prominent role in learning & memory by strengthening synapses  

• GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid): GABAergic neurons  

◦most common inhibitory neurotransmitter in CNS  

◦agonists have calming effect  

• Acetylcholine: Cholinergic neurons  

◦release from motor neurons causes muscle contractions  

◦Also involved in learning and memory  

◦Black widow spider venom: stimulates exocytosis; causes muscles to contract and can't  release  

◦Botulinum toxin/Botox: inhibits exocytosis; causes muscles to relax and can't contract  • Dopamine: Dopaminergic neurons  

◦Parkinson's disease: causes tremors  

◦Feelings of pleasure, reinforcement & reward  

◦Cocaine: blocks reuptake

• Serotonin: Serotonergic neurons  

◦involved in regulation of mood, eating, sleep, dreaming, pain  

◦most recognized for regulating mood  

◦Serotonin-specific reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs): inhibits reuptake

◦Prozac: used for depressing  

◦MDMA (Ecstasy, Molly)  

• Electroencephalogram (EEG): measures electrical signals of neurons  

◦Event-related potentials (ERPs): allows researchers to observe patterns associated with  specific events  

• Position emission tomography (PET): method of brain imaging where radioactive glucose or  radioactive oxygen is injected into the body and absorbed by active brain areas  • Functional MRI (fMRI): can see what parts of the brain are active during certain activities  • Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS): a brief, but intense magnetic pulse that adds  electrical "noise" to the neural processing of the cortex under the stimulator to study brain  regions  

• Forebrain: left and right cerebral hemispheres  

• Cerebellum "little brain": located at the back of the brain stem; essential for coordinated  movement and balance  

• Brainstem: extension of the spinal cord; it houses structures that control functions associated  with survival, such as heart rate, breathing, swallowing, vomiting, urination, and orgasm  • Corpus callosum: thick band of myelinated axons that connects the two cerebral  hemispheres  

• Cortex (gray matter): outer layer of cell bodies ("bark of a tree")  

◦dendrites and short axons  

• White matter: long, myelinated axons connects neurons in far locations of the brain  • Sulcus (sulci): concavity (groove) in the cortex

• Gyrus (gyri): convexity (bump) in the cortex  

• Lobes  

◦Frontal: thought  

◦Parietal: touch  

◦Occipital: vision  

◦Temporal: hearing  

• Primary motor cortex: located in the frontal lobe; contains neurons that project to the spinal  cord to move the body's muscles  

• Somatosensory cortex: located in parietal lobe; main sensory area for touch  • Vision cortex (primary visual cortex): located in occipital lobe; main destination for visual  information  

• Auditory cortex (primary auditory cortex): located in temporal lobe; region responsible for  hearing  

• Homunculus "little man": a distorted map of the body stretched out across primary motor  and primary somatosensory cortex  

◦shows that sensations are grouped  

• Phineas Gage: survived major damage to frontal lobe. Caused personality changes  • Split-brain patients: when the corpus callosum is cut, resulting in a patient with two separate  "minds" each with its own abilities, thoughts and memories. The two hemispheres do not  recieve information directly from each other  

• Prefrontal cortex: frontmost part of the frontal lobes; important for attention, working  memory, decision making, appropriate social behavior, and personality  • Basal ganglia: responsible for movement and reward  

• Hippocampus: responsible for memory  

• Thalamus: sensory relay station  

• Hypothalamus: regulates vital body functions such as body temperature  • Amygdala: important for emotions  

• Central nervous system: the brain and spinal cord  

• Peripheral nervous system: all nerve cells in the body that are not part of the central nervous  system  

◦Somatic nervous system: controls voluntary muscle and transmits sensory information  ‣ spinal nerves  

‣ cranial serves  

◦Autonomic nervous system: controls involuntary muscle (the gut)  

‣ Sympathetic nervous system: prepares the body for "fight or flight"  

‣ Parasympathetic nervous system: returns the body to its resting state  • Plasticity: property of the brain that allows it to change as a result of experience or injury  • Phantom limb: when an amputee still has the sensation that the amputated body part still  exists  


1. How can a neuron be both presynaptic and postsynaptic?  

A. There are many neurons connected to one another, so if a neuron is receiving  information, it can also be sending information, therefore being both presynaptic and


2. How does the segregation of ions across the cell membrane cause a battery-like effect that  powers action potentials?  

A. The cell membrane has different charges on the inside and outside, so when ions leave  or enter, it changes the charge and powers action potentials.  

3. How does the sodium-potassium pump cause the interior of neurons to become negatively  charged compared to the extracellular fluid?  

A. For every 3 Na+ ions (sodium) out of the neuron, 2 K+ (potassium) ions are pumped  into the neuron, making the extracellular fluid more positively charged.  

4. Do the combined effects of diffusion and electrostatic forces push sodium ions into or out  of neurons at the resting potential, if open ion channels allow them to move across the cell  membrane? How about potassium?  

A. Sodium is pumped out of the cell, while potassium is brought into the cell.  5. What are the events of a synaptic transmission?  

A. I. Synthesis of the neurotransmitter; II. Release of the neurotransmitter; III. Neurons bind  to postsynaptic receptors ; IV. Inactivation of the neurotransmitter  

6. What makes an EPSP "excitatory"? What makes an IPSP "inhibitory"?  

A. EPSP is excitatory because they increase the likelihood of a postsynaptic action  potential occurring, and IPSPs are inhibitory because they decrease the likelihood  7. What happens to the voltage-dependent sodium and potassium channels that cause  sudden depolarization and subsequent repolarization known as action potentials?  A. They open for a brief period of time.  

8. How does myelin allow action potentials to travel more quickly down an axon?  A. Myelinated axons contain nodes of Ranvier which are gaps in the myelin along the  axons. They contain sodium and potassium ion channels and allow the action potential  to travel more quickly by jumping from one node to the next.  

9. How does the firing rate of a neuron encode the intensity/magnitude of a signal?  A. The more a neuron fires, the stronger the magnitude is. The less it fires, the weaker the  magnitude is.  

10. What are some ways agonist drugs can cause their effect? Antagonist drugs?  A. An agonist can increase the synthesis of a neurotransmitter, increases the number of  neurotransmitters by destroying degrading enzymes, can release neurotransmitter  molecules from terminal buttons, and can block reuptake, which makes the  neurotransmitter stay in the synaptic cleft longer and have a greater effect. An  antagonists can block synthesis of neurotransmitters, causes neurotransmitters to be  destroyed, blocks exocytosis, and can activate an autoreceptor to slow down  neurotransmitters. A direct agonist binds to a postsynaptic receptor and activates them  or increases the effect on them, making them have a bigger effect, while direct  antagonists block receptors and make the effect weaker.  

11. How it botulism toxin both a weapon of mass destruction and a beauty aid?  A. Too much of it can cause the muscles in the body to relax so much that it is not able to  contract and therefore, one can suffocate. However, it is a beauty aid in small doses  because of its ability to relax muscles.  

12. What are some of the short-term effects of ecstasy, and what causes them? Long-term


A. Some short-term effects is that it inhibits serotonin reuptake (Serotonin sticks in the  synaptic cleft longer and has a bigger effect), and it increases the release of serotonin,  but can also cause depletion of serotonin afterwards that can often take weeks to  restore and causes a period of depression. Long-term effects are axon withering,  followed by abnormal regrowth of neurons (or no regrowth at all).  

13. What are the four F's?  

A. Feeding, Fighting, Fleeing, F***ing.  

14. What kind of effects would you expect from damage to the primary motor cortex? Primary  visual cortex?  

A. Damage to the primary motor cortex can cause problems with movement. Damage to  the primary visual cortex can cause eye problems or the way people see things.  15. What did we learn about brain function from Phineas Gage?  

A. We learned that there are different parts of the brain, each with specific functions. He  had damage to the frontal lobe and had major personality changes.  

16. Why can't split-brain patients verbally report what they see in the left visual field, but can  easily find the named object with the left hand?  

A. It is because the right hemisphere controls what they see in the left visual field, and  because the right hemisphere is controlling it, they cannot verbally report what they  see since the right hemisphere is not linked with language (the left hemisphere deals  more with language), but they can pick up the object with the left hand because the  right hemisphere is controlling the left side of the body.  

17. Why are the hands and lips of the homunculus so damn big?  

A. It shows that there are more nerves in those areas.  

18. Why are the hippocampi (plural of hippocampus) so damn big in London taxi drivers?  A. The hippocampus deals with memory, so since London taxi drivers have to memorize  so many routes and streets, they have a big hippocampus.  

19. What is hemineglect, and what does it tell us about the function of the parietal lobe?  A. Hemineglect is the failure to be aware of one side of space and is linked to damage to  the parietal lobe. It shows that the parietal lobe is crucial for responding to new  information or alerting stimuli in the environment. People who suffer with hemineglect sometimes cannot see anything on the left or right side of their body (not even their  face).

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