PSYC 2010, Week 3 Notes
PSYC 2010, Week 3 Notes PSYC 2010 - 001
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This 6 page Class Notes was uploaded by Kelli Daniels on Tuesday September 6, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSYC 2010 - 001 at Auburn University taught by Jennifer Daniels in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 7 views. For similar materials see Introduction into Psychology in Psychology (PSYC) at Auburn University.
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Date Created: 09/06/16
Week 3 | Psychology *In order to better learn the different types of studies, I suggest googling “case study”, “naturalistic observation”, etc. This way, you will gain a better understanding of the different types and they will be easier to remember. Monday, August 29, 2016 Statistical Reasoning in Everyday Life Experimentation: backbone of psychological research; experiments isolate causes and their effects Exploring cause and effect Some can’t be done (ex. heroin correlating to baby defects) Many factors influence our behavior. Experiments: 1. Manipulate factors that interest us 2. Controlling other factors Effects generated by manipulated factors isolate cause and effect relationships Evaluating Therapies Double-blind procedure In evaluating drug therapies, patients and experimenter’s assistants should remain unaware of which patients had the real treatment and which patients had the placebo treatment Random Assignment Assigning participants to experimental (writing about trauma) and control (writing about what did previous day) conditions by random assignment minimizes pre-existing differences between the two groups. Living situations could influence outcome You want the groups to look as similar as possible. Independent variable: a factor manipulated by the experimenter. The effect of the independent variable is the focus of the study. Ex. When examining the effects of writing about trauma upon stress, what is being written about is the independent variable. Dependent variable: a factor that may change in response to an independent variable. In psychology, it is usually a behavior, a mental process, or a physiological response. Ex. In our study on the effect of writing about trauma upon stress, stress is the dependent variable. Confounding variables: a situation in which the independent variable is intertwined or mixed up with another, uncontrolled variable. We cannot tell which variable is responsible for change in the behavior or interest. Operational definition: a statement of the procedures used to define research variables. Ex. love, intelligence, health, trust Experimentation: a summary of steps during experimentation. Condition Independent variable Dependent Experimental Breast milk Intelligence score 2 Control Formula Intelligence score Doubt big, round, undocumented numbers as they can be misleading and before long, become public misinformation. o Statistical significance – the results are not due to chance alone. Based on the numbers Just because something is statistically significant, doesn’t mean it is clinically significant. o Clinical significance – makes a difference in our lives Ex. Give one group a sleeping pill. They sleep 20 minutes longer than other group. That is statistical but not clinical, because sleeping 20 minutes longer isn’t that big of a deal. Ethical considerations o Informed consent: they must understand what they are getting into and giving their consent based on what they are doing. Must be very careful with prisoners, children. o Confidentiality: all the data has to be confidential. Can’t use names or any identifying information, may have to give participant a number, lock away information o Debriefing: when study is done, you must let them know what you were looking for. o Deception: IRB (institutional Review Board) must approve of study; they are very cautious of deception. If you are deceiving someone, the ends must outweigh the means. 3 Other considerations o Gender Bias o Cultural and Ethnic Bias o Socioeconomic Bias o Religious Bias Wednesday, August 31, 2016 The Biology of the Mind Neural Communication The body’s information system is built from billions of interconnected cells called neurons. Neurobiologists and other investigators understand that humans and animals operate similarly when processing information. Neuron: a nerve cell that consists of many different parts. Parts of a neuron o Cell body/Soma: Life supports center of the neuron. Contains the nucleus. Metabolic and reproductive functions for the cell. DNA stored here. o Dendrites: Branching extensions at the cell body. Receive messages from other neurons 4 o Axon: Long single extension of a neuron, covered with myelin sheath to insulate and speed up messages through neurons. o Terminal branches: release neuro transmitters. Process between neurons is a chemical process Action potential: a neural impulse; a brief electrical charge that travels down an axon and is generated by the movement of positively charges atoms in and out of channels in the axon’s membrane. Threshold of Excitation: each neuron receives excitatory and inhibitory signals from many neurons. When the excitatory signals minus the inhibitory signals exceed a minimum intensity (threshold) the neuron fires an action potential. All-or-None Response: a strong stimulus can trigger more neurons to fire, and to fire more often, but it does not affect the action potentials strength or speed. Intensity of an action potential remains the same throughout the length of the axon. Synapse: a junction between the axon tip of the sending neuron and the dendrite or cell body of the receiving neuron. This tiny gap is called the synaptic gap or cleft. 5 Neurotransmitters: chemicals released from the sending neuron travel across the synapse and bind to receptor sites on the receiving neuron, thereby influencing it to generate an action potential. Reuptake: neurotransmitters in the synapse are reabsorbed into the sending neurons through the process of reuptake. This process applies the brakes on neurotransmitters. o Chemical unbalance (leading to different mental issues) is due to a buildup of a chemical in the synaptic cleft. This slows down action potentials. Serotonin pathways are involved with mood regulation. Dopamine pathways are involved with diseases such as schizophrenia and Parkinson’s disease. Norepinephrine 6
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