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Chapter 3: Biological Psychology

by: madisoncasey3

Chapter 3: Biological Psychology PSYC 1000

Marketplace > University of Colorado Denver > Psychology (PSYC) > PSYC 1000 > Chapter 3 Biological Psychology
CU Denver
GPA 3.8

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About this Document

These notes cover all biological aspects of psychology. Goes over parts of the brain, their functions, and how they relate to our everyday thoughts and behaviors.
Introduction to Psychology I
Megan Littrell-Baez
Class Notes
Intro to Psychology, Psychology, Psychology; the brain, Brain and Behavior
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This 6 page Class Notes was uploaded by madisoncasey3 on Monday October 3, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSYC 1000 at University of Colorado Denver taught by Megan Littrell-Baez in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 2 views. For similar materials see Introduction to Psychology I in Psychology (PSYC) at University of Colorado Denver.


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Date Created: 10/03/16
Psych  Chapter 3 Notes + Lecture Biological Psychology: Bridging the Levels of Analysis Biological Psychology  Nervous System:  Biological Psychology:  ­ Allows us to scan multiple levels of analysis  Our study of the biology of the mind begins with basic building blocks of the mind, neurons.  Neurons  Brain cells that specialize in communication  85 billion neurons with 160 trillion connections between them  Neuron makeup pic: SLIDE 4 Electrifying Thought: Action Potentials  Action potential: electrical impulse that travels down the axon  Triggered by change in charge inside the axon  This is the neuron 'firing' an all or none response  Originate near cell body and travel down the axon to axon terminal The Synapse  Junction between the axon tip of the sending neuron and the dendrite/cell body of the receiving  neuron  Also known as the synaptic cleft  Neurotransmitters Neurotransmitters  Chemicals used to send a signal across the synaptic cleft  Recycling neurotransmitters (Nts)   Reuptake: After the neurotransmitters stimulate the receptors on the receiving neuron, the  chemicals are taken back up into the sending neuron to be used again Chemical Communication: Neurotransmisstion  Serotonin; mood, temperature regulations, aggression, and sleep cycles  Dopamine; motor function and reward  Acetylcholine; muscle contraction, cortical arousal  Anandamide; pain reduction, increase in appetite  Norepinphrine; Brain arousal and other functions like mood, hunger, sleep  GABA; main inhibitory neurotransmitter   Glutamate; main excitatory neurotransmitter, participates in relay of sensory informarion and  learning Neural Plasticity Over Development  Plasticity; nervous system's ability to change oveer time  Change in 4 ways during development; ­ Growth of dendrites/axons ­ Synaptogenesis; forming of new synapses, more reliable connections ­ Pruning; reducing connections that aren't useful ­ Myelination; insulation of axons with myelin sheath   Brain is much more plastic in early development  If you were to incur brain damage, there is evidence to suggest that we can reroute the way we  make our connections due to the dead cells  Most evident in rare cases of removal of a whole brain hemisphere was necessary Inner and Outer Parts of the Nervous System  Central Nervous System (CNS):  Contains brain and spinal chord  CNS makes decisions for the body  Peripheral Nervous System (PNS):  'the rest' of the nervous system  PNS gathers and sends information to and from the rest of the body Cerebral Cortex  Outermost part of the brain; responsible for analyzing sensory information and higher brain  functions Ex) Reasoning, language  Consists of two cerebral hemispheres connected by the corpus callosum, which allows  communication between the hemispheres  Four lobes of the Cerebral Cortex:  Frontal lobe; involved in 'executive functions' that coordinate other brain areas, motor planning, language and memory; motor nerves  Central sulcus  Parietal lobe; process touch information; integrate vision/touch; sensory nerves  Occipital lobe; process visual information  Temporal lobe; process auditory information, language and autobiographical memory  Motor Cortex; Left hemisphere controls the right side of the body  Sensory Cortex; Left hemisphere recieves input from the body's right side  Basal Ganglia:  Structures buried deep in the cortex that help control movement  Allows us to perform movements to obtain rewards and reinforcement  Damage can contribute to Parkinson's Disease; lack of control of movements/tremors Limbic System  The emotional center of the brain that also has a role in smell, motivation and memory  Forms a border between the cortex and the brainstem  Thalamus; relays information from the sense organs to areas of the cortex for further  processing  Hypothalamus; ensures adequate food and water intake (homeostasis), involved in  motivational drives (sex, hunger), directs the endocrine system via messages to the pituatry  gland  Four F's : Feeding, Fighting, Fleeting, and Reproduction  Hippocampus; the seahorse; involved in memory, esp spatial information, damage associated  with inability to form new memories  Amygdala; almond; consists of two lima bean sized neural clusters, plays key roles in fear,  excitement, and arousal  Cerebellum (Little brain); helps us maintain balance and coordinate voluntary movement Ex) walking, playing a sport, skating  Contains the brain stem; connector of brain and spinal cord The Brain Stem: Midbrain, Pons, Medulla  Midbrain; contributes to movement, tracking visual stimulli, reflexes to sounds; right below  the thalamus  Pons; involved in unconscious movements and suppressing movement during sleep; connects  cortex to Cerebellum  Medulla; basic life functions; heartbeat and breathing The Spinal Cord  Extends from our brain stem and runs down the middle of our backs, conveying information  between the brain and the rest of the body  Sensory Nerves; carry information from the body to the brain; in parietal lobe  Motor Nerves; carry information from the brain to the rest of the body; in frontal lobe  Interneurons; connect sensory and motor nerves in the spinal cord (bypassing the brain),  allowing reflexes to happen Peripheral Nervous System  Autonomic; part of the nervous system that controls instinctual responses  Parasympathetic; rest and digest, coming back from sympathetic  Sympathetic; fight or flight response, prepares us to fight or flee  Somatic; The Endocrine System  Another system for sending messages through the body  Sends molecules through the bloodstream; rather than neurons  Hormones; molecules produced in various glands around the body ­ Slower than neural communication, but lasts longer  The Pituitary Gland;   The master gland of the endocrine system; regulates other glands  Releases hormones that influence growth and blood pressure  This includes oxytocin; the bonding hormone involved in romantic and maternal love  It is controlled through the hypothalamus in the nervous system  Adrenal Glands;  The sympathetic 'fight or flight' nervous system responds to stress by sending messages through adrenal glands  Release hormones such as adrenalline and cortisol  Which has effects of, increased heart rate, blood pressure, and blood sugar  These provide energy for the fight or flight Mapping the Mind: The Brain in Action Phrenology; An Incorrect Map of the Mind  Phrenologists assumed that:  Bumps on the skull corresponded to brain enlargements  These brain enlargements were linked directly to psychological capacities  We moved beyond phrenology when we examined the structure and activity of the brain using a variety of techniques (MRI, PET, EEG) and studying cases of brain damage Studying Cases of Brain Damage  When a stroke/injury damages part of the brain, we have a chance to see the impact on the mind  Broca's Area; associated with language production in the frontal lobe  Wernicke's Area; asociated with language comprehension in the temporal lobe Intentional Brain Damage  Lesioning; surgical destruction of brain tissue  Performed on animals  Has yielded some insights about the functionality of brain structures  Newer (temporary) methods include magnetic stimulation and chemically deactivating areas Studying the Brain  Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS);  Applies strong and quickly changing magnetic fields to the cortex that can either stimulate or  inhibit neural activity  Electrophysiology;  Monitoring electrical activity in the brain  EEG is a recording of the electrical activity measured by placing electrodes on the scalp  EEG is useful studying seizures and sleep   Neuroimaging;  Measuring activity in specific brain regions  PET scan allows us to see what part of the brain is active by tracing where a radioactive form of glucose goes while the brain performs a given task  a  MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging);   Uses magnetic fields to indirectly visualize brain structure   a  fMRI (Functional MRI);   Reveals brain activity and function rather than just structures.   Shows changes in oxygen levels/blood flow in the brain Lateralization  Cognitive function that relies more on one side of the brain more than the other Ex) Language relying on the left hemisphere  Demonstrated using studies of patients who had split­brain surgery ACTIVITY:  The people below are patients at a neurorehabilitation center. Each statement describes a problem or  behavioral change that the patient has experienced following a brain injury or illness. Based on what  you have learned about the functions of the brain, what area(s)/structures of the brain were likely  affected in each case? Which hemisphere? 1) Bradley has difficulty responding to people with spoken language. Left hemisphere; temporal lobe in the cerebral cortex  2) Desiree has trouble moving her left arm.  Right hemisphere; motor cortex; frontal lobe 3) Pedro’s eyes function normally, but he reports that he cannot see out of his right eye.  Occipital lobe, left hemisphere  4) Linda has trouble balancing when she walks and often falls down.  Cerebellum  Nature Vs. Nurture Behavioral Genetics  Behavior geneticists study how heredity and enviornment contribute to human differences  Behavior geneticists estimate heritability  Heritability; % of the variability in a trait across individuals that is explained by genes  Some traits are highly heritable; height  Some are not; religious affiliation  When performing research on humans, can we design an experiment to keep genes constant and vary the enviornment and see what happens  OR vary the genes in the same enviornment  We cannot ethically do these types of experiments  What can we do the study the separate influences of genes and enviornment? Family studies Twin studies Adoption studies


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