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Chapter 3 & 4 Notes

by: Savannah Alberty

Chapter 3 & 4 Notes PSY2012

Marketplace > University of Florida > PSY2012 > Chapter 3 4 Notes
Savannah Alberty

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These notes cover chapters three and four that will be on the next quest. These contains are a combination of class notes and textbook notes.
General Psychology
Ukonu, Nwakaego
Class Notes
general, Psychology, psy2012
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This 12 page Class Notes was uploaded by Savannah Alberty on Thursday September 15, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSY2012 at University of Florida taught by Ukonu, Nwakaego in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 40 views.


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Date Created: 09/15/16
Psychology Chapter 3 & 4 Neurons- Nerve cells specialized for communication with each other. They have long extensions to help respond to stimulation and communicate. They are unusual in shape relative to other cells in the body. The adult brain contains approximately 85 billion neurons. Components of a Neuron  The cell body- Also called the soma, is the central region of the neuron, it consists of small and large molecules. Contains the nucleus, where proteins are manufactured, damage to this part of the neuron is fatal. (!!! Materials needed by the neuron are made here !!!).  Dendrites- Branchlike extensions that receive information from other neurons. They spread out to “Listen in” on conversations from neighboring neurons and pass them on to the cell body.  Axons & Axon Terminals- Axons are transmitters and specialized for sending messages to other neurons. Long-tail like extensions are usually very think near the cell body. This narrowness creates an area that’s easily activated incoming signals. (Synaptic vesicles- tiny spheres that travel the length of the axon on their way to a knoblike structure at its far end called the axon terminal. They are spherical sacs containing neurotransmitters). Nerve fibers projecting from the cell body that carries nerve impulses. When the synaptic vesicle reaches the end of its little journey at the axon terminal, its burst, releasing neurotransmitters.  Neurotransmitters are chemical messengers specialized for communication from neuron to neuron. When there are no neurotransmitters acting on a neuron, it is at resting potential. When there is enough of a charge inside the neuron (threshold), an action potential will occur. (ex. quick waves of electric discharge activated by a change in charge inside the axon. a.k.a “the neuron is firing”). Neurons can fire 100-1,000 times per second. However, once a neuron has fired there is a brief period known as the absolute refractory period before it can fire again. Both positive and negative ions are on both sides of the membrane. During action potential, positive ions rush in and then out of the axon. This process recurs along the axon until the axon terminal releases neurotransmitters. (!!! COMMUNICATION INSIDE NEURONS IS ELECTRICAL, BUT BETWEEN NEURONS, IT IS CHEMICAL VIS NEUROTRANSMITTERS !!!)  Synapses- A tiny fluid filled space between neurons through which neurotransmitters travel. Consists of a synaptic cleft, which is a gap into which neurotransmitters are released from the axon terminal. Information Travel  Axons carry information Away from the cell body  Dendrites Direct information towards the cell body  Information traveling along the axon is known as the action potential  Myelin Sheath brings More Speed to the action potential Neurotransmission- Receptor sites are located in a unique place that recognizes a neurotransmitter after it is released from a neuron. Different receptor sites recognize different types of neurotransmitters. Reuptake means processes by which the neurotransmitter is taken back into the axon terminal. some excite the nervous system, whereas others inhibit the nervous system. Each neurotransmitter has specific roles and functions in brain and behavior. Glial Cells- “Glial” means glue, also players in the nervous system. Cells in the nervous system that plays a role in the formation of myelin and the blood-brain barrier, responds to injury, removes debris, and enhances learning and memory. A group of glial cells are astrocytes and they interact with neurons. Another type of glial cell, an oligodendrocyte, promotes new connections among nerve cells and releases chemicals to aid in healing. This cell produces an insulating wrapper around axons called Myelin Sheath. Myelin Sheath- Glial cells wrapped around axons that act as insulators of the neuron’s signal. It contains numerous gaps all the wat along the axon called nodes, which help the neuron conduct electricity more efficiently. Neurotransmitters and their major functional roles-  Glutamate- Most common neurotransmitter in the central nervous system that excites neurons. associated with learning and memory. (ex. alcohol and memory enhancers interact with NMDA receptors, a specific type of glutamate receptor.)  Gamma-Aminobutyric (GABA)- Most common neurotransmitter in the central nervous system that inhibits neurons. It plays a role in learning, memory, & sleep. (ex. Alcohol and antianxiety drugs increase GABA activity.)  Acetylcholine (ACh)- Influences arousal, selective attention, sleep, and memory. Muscle contractions (PNS). (ex. Nicotine stimulates these receptors, memory enhancers increase, insecticides block the breakdown, Botox causes paralysis by blocking this.)  Norepinephrine (NE)- Monoamine that influences arousal and other functions like mood, hunger, and sleep.  Serration- Influence mood and temperature regulation, aggression and sleep cycles.  Dopamine- Plays a role in our response to rewarding experiences and motor function. (ex. L-dapa, which increases dopamine, is used to treat Parkinson’s diseases. Antipsychotic drugs, which block dopamine action, are used to treat schizophrenia.)  Serotonin- Mood and temperature regulation, aggression, and sleep cycles. (ex Serotonin- selective reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressants are used to treat depression.  Anandamide- Pain reduction, increase in appetite. (ex. tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) found in marijuana which produces euphoria.)  Endorphins- Pain reduction (ex. narcotic drugs, codeine, morphine, and heroin which reduces pain and produces euphoria. Psychoactive Drugs- Impact mood, arousal, or behavior by acting as agonists and antagonists for neurotransmitters. (Agonists- increase neurotransmitter activity) (Antagonists- decrease neurotransmitter activity). Neural Plasticity- describes the nervous system’s ability to change. The nervous system is continually changing. The network of neurons in the brain changes over the course of development in four primary ways:  Growth of dendrites and axons  Synaptogenesis (which is the formation of new synapses)  Pruning (which is consisting of the death of certain neurons and the retraction of axons to remove connections that aren’t useful)  Myelination (which is the insulation of axons with a myelin sheath. Neurons possess limited ability to recover following brain injury or serious illness.) Stem Cell- Therapies may someday encourage plasticity after injury or degeneration. Neurogenesis- Creation of new neurons that occur during adulthood. Tested on monkeys to determine the cells we have. Nervous System- Central Nervous System (composed of the brain and spinal cord) & Peripheral Nervous System (all the nerves that extend outside of the CNS) PNS- further divided into the somatic nervous system, which controls voluntary behavior, and the autonomic nervous system, which control nonvoluntary functions of the body. Autonomic- sympathetic & parasympathetic Central Nervous System- 6 distinct sections or systems (the brain and spinal cord are protected by meninges, three thin layers of membranes. Further protection is afforded by the cerebral ventricles, fluid filled pockets that extend throughout the entire brain and spinal cord)  Cortex- Frontal lobe (performs executive functions that coordinate other brain areas, motor planning, language, and memory. Contains the Motor Cortex- responsible for body movement. In front of the motor cortex lies a vast expanse of the frontal lobe called the Prefrontal Lobe- which is directly responsible for thinking, planning, and language. The prefrontal lobe also contains the Broca’s area- named after French surgeon Paul Broca, it is the language area that helps to control speech production), Parietal lobe (processes touch information, integrates vision and touch), Temporal lobe (processes auditory information, language, and autobiographical memory & contains the Wernicke’s area- involved in understanding speech), Occipital lobe (processes visual information & Primary sensory cortex- regions of the cerebral cortex that initially process information from the senses.) Association cortex (Spread throughout all 4 lobes of the brain, it synthesizes information to perform more complex functions, ex. pulling together shape, size, color, and location of information to identify an object)  Basal Ganglia- Controls movement and motor planning.  Limbic system- Thalamus (conveys sensory information to cortex), Hypothalamus (oversees endocrine and autonomic nervous system), Amygdala (regulates arousal and fear), Hippocampus (processes memory for spatial locations).  Cerebellum- Controls balance and coordinated movement.  Brain Stem- Midbrain (tracks visual stimuli and reflexes triggered by sound), Pons (conveys information between the cortex and cerebellum), Medulla (regulates breathing and heartbeats). Reticular Activating system- The brain area that plays a key role in arousal and connects with the forebrain and cerebral cortex.  Spinal Cord- Conveys information between the brain and the rest of the body. Contains Sensory nerves (sensory info carried from the brain to the body) and Motor nerves (motor commands carried from the brain to the body). Interneurons- Interneurons that send info to other neurons nearby (ex. reflexes). Cerebral Cortex- Analyzes sensory information, helping us to perform complex brain functions, including reasoning and language. It is the largest component of the cerebrum/ forebrain. It is the outermost part of the cerebrum. Forebrain (cerebrum)- The most highly developed area of the human brain. Forward part of the brain that allows advanced intellectual abilities. It consists of two cerebral hemispheres (two halves of the cerebral cortex, each of which serve distinct yet highly integrated functions.) Corpus Callosum- A huge band of fibers, meaning “colossal body” in Latin, connects the two hemispheres and permits them to communicate. Peripheral Nervous System  Somatic Nervous System- carries messages from the CNS to muscles throughout the body, controlling movement. Regulates our posture and bodily movement. The brain and spinal cord interact with this system to bring about sensation and behavior.  Autonomic Nervous System- Especially the limbic system interacts, to control emotions and internal physical states. It controls the involuntary actions of out organs and glands; along with the limbic system, it regulates our emotions. Breakdowns into two divisions that work in opposing directions (Sympathetic Nervous System-Its neurons tend to fire together “in sympathy” and is active during emotional arousal. It is engaged during a crisis or after actions requiring fight or flight.) (Parasympathetic Nervous System- It is active during rest and digestion. This system kicks into gear when there’s no threat on our mental radar screens.) Endocrine System- A network of glands that release hormones (chemical released into the bloodstream that influences particular organs and glands) into the bloodstream. Also influences emotions and stress.  Pituitary Gland- Master gland that, under the control of the hypothalamus, directs the other glands of the body. This gland releases a variety of hormones that serve numerous functions.  Adrenal Gland- Tissue located on top of the kidneys that releases adrenaline and cortisol during states of emotional arousal. It is also called the emergency centers of the body.  Sexual Reproductive Glands & Sex Hormones- Testes in males with the hormone testosterone and ovaries in females with the hormone estrogen. Electrical Stimulation & Recording of Nervous System Activity  Electroencephalograph (EEG)- Recording of brain’s electrical activity at the surface of the skull. Determines whether someone is awake or asleep, dreaming or not, and to tell which regions of the brain are active during specific tasks. Brain Scans and Other Imaging Techniques- Neuroimaging techniques allow us to gain a better understanding of the appearance of the brain as well as its functions.  Computed Tomography (CT)- A scanning technique using multiple X- rays to construct three-dimensional images. (Allows us to visualize the brain’s structure)  Magnetic Resonance Imagine (MRI)- Technique that uses magnetic fields to indirectly visualize brain structure. (Allows us to visualize the brain’s structure)  Positron Emission Tomography (PET)- Imaging technique that measures consumption of glucose-like molecules, yielding a picture of neural activity in different regions of the brain. (Allow us to visualize brain activity)  Functional MRI (fMRI)- Technique that uses magnetic fields to visualize brain activity using changes in blood oxygen level. (Allow us to visualize brain activity) Magnetic Stimulation and Recording  Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS)- Technique that applies strong and quickly changing magnetic fields to the surface or the skull that can either enhance or interrupt brain function.  Magnetoencephalography (MEG)- Technique that measures brain activity by detecting tiny magnetic fields generated by the brain. It reveals which brain areas are becoming activated in response to stimuli. Lateralization- Cognitive function that relies more ono one side of the brain than the other. Many of these functions concern specific language and verbal skills. Split Brain Surgery- Procedure that involves severing the corpus callosum to reduce the spread if the epileptic seizures. Examined by Roger Sperry who showed that the two hemispheres serve different functions, such as different levels of language ability. Left Hemisphere  Fine Tuned Language Skills- speech comprehension, speech production, phonology, syntax, reading, writing.  Actions- Making facial expressions and motion detection. Right Hemisphere  Course Language Skills- simple speech, simple writing, and tone of voice.  Visuospatial Skills- Perceptual grouping and face perception. Nature vs. Nurture  Chromosomes- Slender thread inside a cell’s nucleus that carries genes.  Gene- Genetic material, composed of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA)  Genotype- Our genetic makeup  Phenotype- Our observable traits  Dominant Gene- Gene that masks other genes’ effects  Recessive Gene- Gene that is expressed only in absence of a dominant gene  Fitness- organisms’ capacity to pass on their genes.  Heritability- Percentage of the variability in a trait across individuals that is due t0 genes. (Misconceptions- 1). It applies to a single individual rather than to differences among individuals. 2). Tells us whether a trait can be changed. 3). It is a fixed number.  Family Studies- Analysis of how characteristics run in intact families.  Twin Study- Analysis of how traits differ in identical vs. fraternal twins  Adoption Study- Analysis of how traits vary in individuals raised apart from their biological relatives. Sensation & Perception  Illusion- Perception in which the way we perceive a stimulus doesn’t match its physical reality.  Sensation- The detection of physical energy by our sense organs, which then relays information to the brain. (Sense organs include- eyes, ears, skin, nose, and tongue)  Perception- How our brain makes sense of raw sensory data.  Transduction- Process occurring when sensory receptors convert external energy or substance into neural activity. (ex. going from outside world within)  Sense Receptor- Specialized cell that transduces a specific stimulus.  Sensory Adaption- Activation of senses is greatest when a stimulus is first detected. (Response weakens over time, ex. sitting in a chair and then eventually not noticing the small specifics we recognized when we first sat down) Psychophysics- The study of how we perceive sensory stimuli based on their physical characteristics.  Absolute Threshold- It is lowest level of a stimulus we can detect 50% of the time when no other stimulants of that type are present. (ex. We can detect a single candle up to 30 miles away on a clear night)  Just Noticeable Difference (JND)- The smallest change in the intensity of a stimulus that we can detect. Our ability to distinguish a strong stimuli and weak stimuli from one another.  Weber’s Law- States that the stronger the stimulus the greater the change necessary for the detection of a difference. There is a constant proportional relationship between the JND and original stimulus intensity. (ex. the difference between having the tv volume on 28 and 29)  Signal Detection Theory- It describes how we detect stimuli under certain conditions. (ex. trying to talk to a friend on the phone and there is static making it difficult to hear the conversation so you have to shout or speak louder in order to ensure your friend can hear you.) (Stimulus Present- True positive if the response is yes; False negative if the response is no.) (Stimulus Absent- False positive if the response is yes; True negative if the response is no.)  Synesthesia- A condition in which people experience cross-modal sensations, Sir Francis Galton. (ex. hearing sounds when they see colors- sometimes called “color hearing”  Sensory system has Cross Modal Processing (the mixing of the senses across brain areas). Role of Attention  Selective Attention- Process of selecting one sensory channel and ignoring or minimizing others (cocktail party effect- our ability to pick out an important message, like our name, in a conversation that doesn’t involve us). Allows us to select one channel and turn off the others, or at least turn down their volume.  Inattentional Blindness- Failure to detect stimuli that are in plain sight when our attention is focused elsewhere.  Change Blindness- A failure to detect obvious changes in one’s environment.  Binding Problem- Our brains managing to combine or “bind” these diverse pieces of information into a unified whole. Visual System- Humans respond to a narrow range of wavelengths of light and we perceive brightness (intensity) and hue (color). We are attuned to 3 primary colors of light, the mixing of these three colors (additive color mixing) produces an array of colors.  Subtractive Color Mixing- Mixing colored pigments in paint or ink produces a dark color.  Additive Color Mixing- Mixing of varying amounts of three colors that can produce any color. The Eye- Different parts of our eyes allow varying amounts of light to enter our eye. Structures on the front of the eye focus the incoming light rays to form an image in the back of our eye. (Sclera, Iris, & Pupil)  Pupil- A circular hole through which light enters the eye. It is the opening in the center of the iris that lets in light.  Cornea- Contains transparent cells that focus light on the back of the eye. It is the part if the eye containing transparent cells that focus light on the retina. It is a curved, transparent layer that covers the iris and pupil.  Lens- Changes curvature through the process of accommodation to retract light onto back of eye. It bends light and changes its curvature allowing for us to fine-tune the visual image. (Accommodation- It can make the lens “flat” enabling us to see distant objects or “fat” enabling us to focus on nearby objects. Glasses change the way light enters our eyes.) (Nearsightedness, or myopia, results when images are focused in front of the rear of the eye due to our cornea being too steep or our eyes too long) (Farsightedness, or hyperopia, results when our cornea is too flat or our eyes too short.)  Retina- A thin membrane at the back of the eye plays a key role in changing light into neural activity.  Fovea- It is located in the center of the retina is responsible for acuity (sharpness of vision). Two sensory receptors in our eyes  Rods- (long and narrow), enable us to see basic shapes and forms, allow us to see in low levels of light (dark adaptation)  Cones- (small cones), color vision and are sensitive to detail; require more light than rods do. Optic Nerve- Exits the back of the eye and is composed of the axons of the ganglion cells. Blind Spot- It occurs when the retina and the optic nerve meet. Most of the axons go to the thalamus and then the visual cortex, but some go to the midbrain. It is part of the visual field we can’t see because of an absence of rods and cones. Feature Detection- The ability to use certain minimal patterns to identify objects. They detect lines and edges. Trichromatic Theory- Idea that color vision is based on our sensitivity to three primary colors (blue, green, & red) and having our three kinds of cones, each maximally sensitive to different wavelengths of light. Color Blindness- Inability to see some or all colors. Opponent Process Theory- Theory that we perceive colors in terms of three pairs of opponent colors: either red or green, blue or yellow, or black or white. After image, which is what happens when you stare at one color too long and look away, appear in complimentary colors, illustrate opponent processing. Hearing: The Auditory System  Audition- Our sense of hearing.  Pitch- Which corresponds to the frequency of the wave. Higher Frequency= Higher Pitch (shorter wavelength) and vice versa.  Loudness- The amplitude or height of the sound wave corresponds to the loudness measured in decibels (dB).  Timbre- Complexity or quality of sound that makes musical instruments, human voices, or other sources sound unique. Differences in sound are due to timbre.  Hertz (Hz)- Measurement of sound. Ear- Three main parts: outer (consists of the pinna, which is the part of the ear we see, and ear canal, which funnels sound waves onto the eardrum), middle (contains ossicles, which are the three tiniest bones in the body, vibrate at the frequency of the sound wave), & inner (cochlea, which converts vibrations into neural activity and is a bony spiral-shaped organ used for hearing, Organ of Corti, which is tissue containing the hair cells necessary for hearing, Basilar membrane, which is the membrane supporting the organ of Corti and hair cells in the cochlea).  Ear Canal- Conducts sound waves to the eardrum.  Eardrum- Membrane that vibrate in response to sound waves.  Semicircular Canal- One of the three fluid-filled structures that play a role in balance. Place Theory- Specific place along the basilar membrane matches tones with a specific pitch. Accounts only for our perception of high-pitches tones, namely those from5,000 to 20,000 Hz. (Explains perception of high-pitched tones). The perception of low-pitched tones occurs via 2 routes. Theories explaining these routes include:  Frequency Theory- Rate at which neurons fire the action potential reproduces to the pitch.  Volley Theory- Sets of neurons fire at higher rates, slightly out of sync with each other to reproduce pitches of up to 5,00 Hz. Smell and Taste: Senses (Work hand in hand to enhance our liking and disliking of food)  Olfaction- Our sense of smell  Gustation- Our sense of taste  Taste Buds- Tongue plays a major role in our ability to taste. Sense receptor in the tongue that responds to sweet, salty, sour, bitter, umami, and perhaps fat. Bumps on the tongue called papilla contain numerous taste buds. Taste perception is biased strongly by our sense of smell, which explains why we find food much less tasty when our noses are stuffed from a cold.  Pheromone- Odorless chemical that serves as a social signal to members of one’s species that alter our sexual behavior.  Odors are airborne chemicals that interact with the lining of our nasal passages.  Olfactory neurons contain a single type of receptor which recognizes odorants based on their shape. Body Senses The Somatosensory System: Touch & Pain  Somatosensory- Our sense of touch, temperature, and pain. It responds to stimuli applied to the skin, such as light touch or deep pressure, hot or cold temperature, or chemical or mechanical injury produces pain. Due to specialized nerve endings and free nerve endings.  Gate Control Model- Idea that pain is blocked or gated from consciousness by neural mechanisms in spinal cord, this idea was created by Ronald Melzack and Patrick Wall. The pain is blocked because neural mechanisms in the spinal cord function as a “gate”, controlling the flow of sensory input to the central nervous system. Phantom Limb Illusion- A person with an amputated limb often experiences the eerie phenomenon of this, which is a pain or discomfort felt in an amputated limb. The missing limb often feels as if it’s in an uncomfortably distorted position.  Somatic Nerves carry info to spinal cord – Spinal reflexes may be activated – Connects in brain stem, thalamus – Touch: somatosensory, association occurs – Pain: somatosensory cortex, limbic area Proprioception and Vestibular Sense: Body Position and Balance  Proprioception- Our sense of body position, it is our kinesthetic sense that helps us keep track of where we are and move efficiently. (Muscle stretch receptors vs. tendon force detectors)  Vestibular Sense- Also called our sense of equilibrium, enables us to sense and maintain our balance as we move about.  Semicircular Canals- Located in the inner ear, these canals are filled with fluid, sense equilibrium and help us maintain our balance. When Our Senses Meet Our Brain  Parallel Processing- The ability to attend to many sense modalities simultaneously. Two important concepts go along with it; Bottom-up processing (Processing in which a whole is constructed from parts) & Top-down processing (Conceptually driven processing influenced by beliefs and expectancies.) Perceptual Hypotheses: Guessing What’s Out There  Perceptual Set- Set formed when expectations influence perceptions. (this is an example of top-down processing).  Perceptual Constancy- The process by which we perceive stimuli consistently across varied conditions. (shape, size, and color constancy) Gestalt Principles- Are rules governing how we perceive objects as wholes within their overall context. They help to explain why we see much of our world as consisting of unified figures or forms rather than confusing jumbles of lines and curves.  Proximity- Objects physically close to each other tend to be perceived as unified wholes.  Similarity- All things being equal, we see similar objects as comprising a whole, much more so than dissimilar objects.  Continuity- We still perceive objects as wholes, even if other objects block part of them.  Closure- When partial visual information is present, our brains fill in what’s missing.  Symmetry- We perceive objects that are symmetrically arranged as wholes more often than those that aren’t.  Figure Ground- Perceptually, we make an instantaneous decision to focus attention on what we believe to be the central figure, and largely ignore what we believe to be the background. Depth Perception- The ability to see spatial relations in three dimensions; it enables us to reach for a glass and grasp it rather than knock it over and spill its contents. It is not pictorial in motion parallax- the ability to judge the distance of moving objects from their speed. Monocular Depth Cues- Stimuli that enables us to judge depth using only one eyes.  Relative Size  Texture gradient  Interposition  Linear Perspective  Height in plane  Light and Shadow Binocular Depth Cues- Stimuli that enables us to judge depth using both eyes. Motion Blindness- inability to perceive seamless motion.


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