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Psychology - Week 3

by: April Sapp

Psychology - Week 3 81067

April Sapp

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About this Document

These notes cover the basics of Chapter 3 in the Introducing Psychology textbook.
General Psychology (PSY 121)
Jason E. Strickhouser
Class Notes
general, Intro to Psychology, Pyscholgy, neuroscience
25 ?




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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by April Sapp on Wednesday August 31, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to 81067 at University of North Carolina - Greensboro taught by Jason E. Strickhouser in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 4 views. For similar materials see General Psychology (PSY 121) in Psychology (PSYC) at University of North Carolina - Greensboro.


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Date Created: 08/31/16
Chapter 3: Neuroscience and Behavior • Which components allow neurons to communicate? The cell body, the axon, and the dendrites. • Three major types of neurons ◦ Sensory neurons: Receive information from the external world and convey this information to the brain via the spinal cord ◦ Motor neurons: Carry signals from the spinal cord to the muscles to produce movement ◦ Interneurons: Connect sensory, motor neurons, and other interneurons • How do the three types of neurons work together to transmit information? Some interneurons carry information from sensory neurons to the nervous system. Some carry information from the nervous system to motor neurons. • What difference between the inside and outside of the neuron's cell membrane creates the resting potential? The difference in concentrations of ions inside and outside the neuron's cell membrane. • Why is an action potential an all-or-nothing event? Either the electrical stimulation in the neuron reaches the threshold to fire an action potential, or it remains at the resting potential. • How does a neuron communicate with another neuron? The terminal buttons on axons contain neurotransmitters, which transmit information to a dendrites receptors. The receptors then either initiate or prevent a new electric signal. • Types and Functions of Neurotransmitters ◦ Acetylcholine (Ach) ▪ Voluntary motor control ▪ Found in synapses where axons connect to muscles and body organs, such as the heart ▪ Contributes to regulation of attention, learning, sleeping, dreaming, and memory Alzheimer's disease is associated with the deterioration ofAch-producing neurons ◦ Dopamine ▪ Controls regulation of motor behavior, motivation, pleasure, and emotional arousal Because of its role in associating actions with rewards, dopamine plays a part in drug addiction -High levels: linked to schizophrenia -Low levels: linked to Parkinson's disease ◦ Glutamate ▪ The excitatory neurotransmitter in the brain ▪ Enhances the transmission of information between neurons ▪ Too much glutamate can cause overactive neurons, leading to seizures ◦ GABA(gamma-aminobutyric acid) ▪ Primary inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain ▪ Stops the firing of neurons ▪ Too little GABAcan cause overactive neurons, leading to seizures ◦ Norepinephrine ▪ Involved in viligance/heightened awareness of dangers in the environment ▪ Affects mood and arousal ▪ Low levels connected to mood disorders ◦ Serotonin ▪ Regulates sleep and wakefulness, eating, and aggressive behavior ▪ Affects mood and arousal ▪ Low levels connected to mood disorders ◦ Endorphins ▪ Acts within the pain pathways and emotion centers of the brain ▪ Helps dull pain and elevate moods • How do neurotransmitters create the feeling of runner's high? Endorphins release when a person pushes their body to painful limits of endurance, which result in the dulling of pain and elevation of mood. • How does L-dopa alleviate symptoms of Parkinson's disease? It spurs the surviving neurons to produce more dopamine; it acts as an agonist for dopamine. • What triggers the increase in your heart rate when you feel threatened? The sympathetic nervous system, which prepares the body for action in challenging or threatening situations. • What important functions does the spinal cord perform on its own? Spinal reflexes which are simple pathways in the nervous system that rapidly generate muscle contractions. • Which part of the brain helps to orchestrate movements that keep you steady on your bike? The cerebellum • How is the thalamus like a computer? The thalamus acts like a computer server in a networked system by taking in multiple inputs and relaying them to a multitude of locations. • Why are you likely to remember details of a traumatic event? When we enter emotionally arousing situations, the amygdala stimulates the hippocampus to remember as many details as possible in the situation. • Why is part of the somatosensory cortex relating to the lips bigger than the area corresponding to the feet? Because the lips are more sensitive than the feet, a larger part of the somatosensory cortex is denoted to it. • What types of thinking occur in the frontal lobe? Abstract thinking, planning, memory, and judgment. • What does it meant to say that the brain is plastic? Functions that were assigned to certain areas of the brain may be capable of being reassigned to other areas of the brain to accommodate changing input from the environment. • What distinguishes the brain of a mammal from the brain of an amphibian? Mammals have a highly developed cerebral cortex while amphibians have almost no cerebral cortex. • Why do dizygotic twins (fraternal twins) share 50% of their genes, just like siblings born separately? Dizygotic twins develop from two separate fertilized eggs meaning they only share half of their genes, just like any two siblings born separately. • How have brain disorders been central to the study of specific areas of the brain? By studying loss of functions in the brain, neuroscientists can theorize about the functions normally performed in certain areas of the brain. • How does the EEG record electrical activity in the brain? Electrodes are placed on the outside of the head. The electric signals of the brain are amplified several thousand times by the EEG. • What does an fMRI track in an active brain? The oxygenated hemoglobin. It provides a picture of the level of activation in each brain area.


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