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This 8 page Class Notes was uploaded by Samantha Taylor on Saturday January 16, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSYS 416 at Ball State University taught by Dr. Kristin Ritchey in Winter 2016. Since its upload, it has received 25 views. For similar materials see Cognitive Psychology in Psychlogy at Ball State University.
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Date Created: 01/16/16
Cognitive Psychology 416 01/11/2016 ▯ Intro into Cognition ▯ What is cognition? Acquiring, storing, transforming, and using knowledge Cognitive psych = one perspective or one point of view o Why do people think or act the way they do? o Applications/Implications of how we figure this out? Using mind tricks for storing information Learning and using memory to acquire knowledge. Really comprehending and understanding it instead of just memorizing it. ▯ Themes of Cognition Cognition is active o Even when we don’t intend to use them, we do. They can be sub or unconscious thoughts Ex: When we are asleep but we continue to dream Cognition is efficient/accurate o When we speak, we speak at a rate of approximately one word per half a second. We chose one word at a time out of millions that we know and put them in order to communicate and convey our meaning. Cognitive processes are interrelated o When you are reading, you aren’t just reading You are studying imagery You are studying long term memory You are making decisions on how to say or pronounce the word o One task has many different processes within itself Smell triggering a memory- using perception to recognize the smell and connect it to the memory Cognitive processes are testable o Although the mind is something that we cannot touch or hold in our hands. We find ways to test it. We have a challenging job to research and test the cognitive processes because they do not stand still once you find them. o IQ Tests or any kind of test in a class Memory Understanding The ability to use the material ▯ History of Cognition Early History o Ancient philosophers We have asked the same questions as the ancient philosophers As our roots, we have a philosophical background For example: What is the human mind and how does it work? o Empiricists (Locke) vs. Nativists (Descartes) Nurture vs. Nature Nurture: environment Nature: in born qualities We are still trying to figure out these ancient questions and following in their footsteps o Wundt! – 1879 (not the year he was born) He established the first psych lab in 1879 People didn’t call themselves psychology at this time They would all be interested in something underneath the psychology label, but they called it something different Wundt decided to get all of those ideas together and study it together in a lab Structuralism He suggested that we should study the structure or the mind or how it is organized. How are all of our thoughts and memories put together? What is the first word that comes to mind when someone says “cat”? Meow. Now we have a little bit of knowledge to see how your brain is organized. It’s a very little test, but it is a starting point. o William James – late 1800s One of Wundt’s followers Functionalism Different parts of the brain have different functions or different roles to play an influence different parts of ourselves It is a good idea to make sure we look at the broader circle when we are researching or thinking about a certain topic For example, what else was going on in the late 1800s that might cause William James to be thinking about functionalism? It was the start of the industrial revolution (social and industrial) Around this time, we also have Darwin talking about people changing and adapting overtime to fit in their environment William took that idea a little bit and came th up with functionalism 20 Century o Behaviorism: 1920s and 1960s o John Watson and B.F. Skinner Observable behavior: only study actions that can be directly seen Cognitive psychology was put on hold during this time because you can’t see the mind work Stimulus Response The “Skinner box” Pigeon in a box and test different ways the bird reacts to a light or a noise Can you train the bird to do certain tasks if a light or sound goes off? Rewards/punishment to alter response A lot of our actions are prompted by a reward or punishment We learned a lot from the behavioral stage The Cognitive Revolution o During this time, psychologists start recognizing that we have to include mental processes to fully explain behavior o They realized that what the behaviorists were doing was not enough to explain behavior They only focuses on the Stimulus Response idea o Now they started to ask Stimulus WHAT HAPPENS HERE? Response You can carry out the same task or have the same stimulus but have a different response, so what happens in the middle For example, a person’s reaction to Donald Trump. Some people love him and some people hate him. o What causes this revolution to come about? Linguistics – Noam Chomsky He was pivotal in this revolution because he was able to show that this behaviorists way of explanation of behavior was not sufficient in explains how we use language as humans Example: when we are little, around the age of 2, we started to speak in full sentences During this time, we still speak grammatically correct because we just copy what we hear But when we turn 3 or 4, we realize that there is a reason why we have certain grammatical rules, so we started saying “we swammed” or “I ranned” This has nothing to do with reward or punishment Stimulus Response does not explain such a complex behavior Cognitive Development – Piaget Big blow against the behaviorists There must be a different way to study why these responses happen. It is not just something you can touch or see. It is cognitive. Ulric Neisser’s Cognitive Psychology (1967) He takes credit for taking people and looking at all of the little subsections (retention, memory, understanding) of what we call “cognitive psychology” today and put them all under one idea to make a subfield of psychology Invention of the computer! Before this, we hadn’t been able to test cognitive results as well Brain waves Eye tracking Gave us the technology that helped us study the mind and also gave us an analogy or comparison to the brain itself ▯ What is Cognitive Science? You can think of it has a combination of different fields: o Cognitive psych o Neuroscience o Computer science/ A.I. o Philosophy o (Anthropology) – sometimes stick their toes in All of these together help us figure out how the mind works ▯ Perspectives in Cognitive Science Information Processing (you can look at the mind from many different perspectives) o Mental processes are a lot like computer processes; Brain = hardware; the physical aspect ‘Mind’ = software; the part that tells the brain or computer how to do a certain task o Example: o Signal 1,2, and 3 selective filter decision channel (limited capacity) going forward Signals are what we see or recognize in our environment The selective filter helps us process what it is and what it means Decision channel decides why it is important and sends it out to the rest of the brain Real life example, studying in the atrium: you have to focus on your book, but you smell the food and hear the people, so you have to selectively focus on your book to make sure you get the information you need o Drawbacks of comparing your brain to a computer: Only represents serial processing It is good at describing cognitive processes that play out in a step-by-step process, but that is not always how we think. Examples: Math problem Recipe Usually we are thinking about many things at once even if we are trying to think about one thing. There are many distractions. Only represents fast, simple processes Not that you can’t use a computer analogy to describe more complex processes, but it doesn’t fully explain them in depth Connectionism o A good way to think about how our mind works is that we are constantly making connections. o Mental processes occur in parallel; “spreading activation” o o The idea is that each of our thoughts that is represented in the smaller circles are all interconnected to each other even if they have separate subsections in our thought processes. Think of the movie “West Side Story” and the categories that we use to describe the characters: Age School Occupation Name Single, married, divorced Jet or Shark o When we collect information, it automatically makes you think about how they are connected and what else connects to them that you have witnessed in your life time. As soon as someone asks, “Do you know Ralph?” you automatically put him into categories that you remember; “He graduated from Jr. High, he is 15 years old, and is a drug pusher”. Artificial intelligence computers are starting to be programmed more like this, but computers only know what you tell them to do Evolutionary o The “mind” in the product or result of a biological system that can evolve If our physical brain is changing and evolving over time, it makes since that the thoughts change overtime as well We believe that our ways of thinking have served some kind of adaptive value, maybe the way we think the way today has been the combination of survival tactics just like our bodies have adapted overtime. Using the computer analogy, we build faster computers that can do more tasks just like our brains have developed better and better overtime o What are examples of arguments against this theory? If this was the case, why would there still be suicide, child abuse, alcoholism, car accidents? We still think about stupid, unproductive things It may be from experiences and what we have learned throughout history instead of a genetic evolution History repeats itself and we know this, but sometimes we need to learn things on our own even though we see others fail at the same task ▯ Cognitive Psych’s Big Contributions 1. Mental processes are grounded in our biology… o …But we are not determined by our biology o It is not just genetic, it is combined with our environment to make up our processes...it is not just nature or just nurture, it is both. 2. The mind is not too complex to understand o People used to not believe in studying the mind as a life goal or as an occupation o Cognitive scientists have credit for bringing a lot of fields together to study the mind and figure out that it is not too complex to study ▯ ▯
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