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Psych Ch. 8 Notes

by: Emily Brady

Psych Ch. 8 Notes Psych 2010

Emily Brady

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These notes cover what will be on our next exam! Loaded with examples from the textbook and class.
Introduction to Psychology
Jerry Murphy
Class Notes
Psychology, Intro to Psychology, thinking, Language, intelligence
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This 10 page Class Notes was uploaded by Emily Brady on Saturday October 8, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to Psych 2010 at Auburn University taught by Jerry Murphy in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 35 views. For similar materials see Introduction to Psychology in Psychology (PSYC) at Auburn University.

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Date Created: 10/08/16
Psych Chapter 8 Thinking, Language, and Intelligence 8.1 What is Thought?  Cognition: The mental activity that includes thinking and the understandings that results from thinking   Cognitive psych was originally based on two ideas about thinking: o Knowledge about the world is stored in the brain in representations o Thinking is the mental manipulation of these representations   Thinking: the mental manipulation of representations of knowledge about the world   Analogical representations: mental representations that have some of the physical  characteristics of objects, they are analogous to the objects   o EX: maps are analogical representations that correspond to geographical layouts; clock corresponds to the passage of time; realistic drawing of a violin  o These representations are usually images   Symbolic representations: abstract mental representations that do not correspond to the  physical features of objects of ideas  o These representations are usually words, numbers, or ideas  o EX: there are no correspondences between what a violin looks like, what it  sounds like, and the letters or sounds that make up the word “violin”   Mental maps rely on BOTH analogical and symbolic representation  o EX: we know the outline of Africa even though we have never actually seen the  outline with our own eyes  Concept: a category, or class, of related items; it consist of mental representations of  those items  o EX: musical instrument or fruit   Prototype model: A way of thinking about concepts. Within each category, there is a  best example­a prototype­ for that category  o EX: orange is a prototype of the fruit category   Exemplar model: A way of thinking about concepts. All members of a category are  examples (exemplars); together they form the concept and determine category  membership  o EX: Your representation of of dogs is made up of all the dogs you have seen in  your life  Stereotypes: Cognitive schemas that allow for easy, fast processing of information  about people based on their membership in certain groups  o EX: dumb blondes, scientists are often seen as male rather than female   Script: a schema that directs behavior over time within a situation  o EX: going to the movies  SUMMING UP:  Knowledge about the world is stored in the brain as representations. This storage  makes thought possible   Categorization is grouping objects or events based on shared properties, to increase thinking efficiency  Concepts are mental representations that categorize items around commonalities   According to the prototype model, the individual forms a concept around a  category and then chooses a prototype that best represents the concept   According to the exemplar model, the individual forms a concept by combining all  the examples (exemplars) of a category ever experienced by the individual  Schemas are categories used to organize information. Schemas usually work  because situations and appropriate behaviors follow general rules   Scripts are schemas that guide behavior in specific situations, such as going to the  movies   Schemas and scripts are adaptive because they minimize attentional requirements  and help people avoid dangerous situations   A negative consequence of schemas and scripts is that they may reinforce  stereotypes and biases  8.2 How do We Make Decisions and Solve Problems?  Decision making: attempting to select the best alternative from among several options  o EX: Choosing between Paris and Cancun for spring break   Problem Solving: Finding a way around an obstacle to reach a goal  o EX: If you go to Paris but do not have enough money for a plane ticket, you  have a problem   Normative decision theories: Attempts to define how people should make decisions  o EX: People always select the choice that yields the largest gain   Descriptive decision theories: attempts to predict how people actually make choices, not to define ideal choices  o People often show bias in decision making   NOTE: NORMATIVE AND DESCRIPTIVE THEROIES DON’T WORK   Expected utility theory: According to this model, people make decisions by considering the possible alternatives and choosing the most desirable one   Heuristics: Shortcuts (rules of thumb or informal guidelines) used to reduce the amount  of thinking that is needed to make decisions  o Often occurs unconsciously   Anchoring: The tendency, in making judgments to rely on the first piece of information  encountered or information that comes most quickly to mind  o EX: When asked to estimate how many people live in Chicago, the answer  will depend on how the question is phrased. If they are asked if the  population is more or less than 200,000, they provide a smaller number of  residents than if they are asked if the population is more or less than 5  million   Framing: In decision making, the tendency to emphasize the potential losses or potential  gains from at least one alternative  o EX: Would you rather take a course where you have a 70% chance of  passing or a 30% chance of failing? Even though they are identical, most  would rather go for the first option  o Often more concerned with costs than benefits (loss aversion)   Availability heuristic: Making a decision based on the answer that most easily comes to  mind   Representativeness heuristic: Placing a person or object in a category if that person or  object is similar to one’s prototype for that category  o EX: Assuming an individual with certain characteristics is a cognitive  psychologist rather than a postal worker, when they are actually a postal  worker   Affective forecasting: the tendency for people to overestimate how events will make  them feel in the future   Restructuring: A new way of thinking about a problem that aids its solution  o EX: connecting 9 dots without lifting your pencil to create at most 4 lines   Mental sets: Problem solving strategies that have worked in the past  o Functional Fixedness: In problem solving, having fixed ideas about the typical  functions of objects   EX: using duct tape for NOT its original purpose  Insight: The sudden realization of a solution to a problem  SUMMING UP:  The paradox of choice is that people prefer to have more choices, but increasing  their options decreases their decision making ability and their satisfaction with  decisions  Problem solving can be improved by breaking problems into subgoals, restructuring the problem, working backward from the goal, or transferring an effective strategy  from an analogous situation   Mental sets and functional fixedness inhibit problem solving  8.3 What is Language?  Language: A system of communication using sounds and symbols according to  grammatical rules  o EX: English, Spanish, etc.  Morphemes: The smallest language units that have meaning, including suffixes and  prefixes  o EX: In the words “frost”, “defrost”, and “defroster” – “FROST” is the  morpheme  o Each morpheme consists of one or more phonemes   Phonemes: The basic sounds of speech, the building blocks of language  o EX: The word “kissed” has two morphemes (“kiss” and “ed”) and four  phonemes (the sounds you make when you say the word)  Aphasia: A language disorder that results in deficit in language comprehension and  production  o Expressive aphasia: When the Broca’s area is damaged, patient’s ability to speak is interrupted    They can understand words and move their mouth/tongues but  cannot form words to talk   Wernicke’s area: An area of the left hemisphere where the temporal and parietal lobes  meet, involved in speech comprehension  o Receptive aphasia: When the Wernicke’s area is damaged, patients have trouble  understanding the meaning of words   Those with receptive aphasia are often highly verbal, but what they  say does not follow the rules of grammar or make sense   Global aphasia: the individual cannot understand or produce language when extensive  damage is done to the left hemisphere   Linguistic relatively theory: The claim that language determines thought  o Proven not to be true through infants and animals   Telegraphic speech: The tendency for toddlers to speak using rudimentary sentences  that are missing words and grammatical markings but follow a logical syntax and convey  a wealth of meaning  o They speak as if they are sending a telegram  Surface structure: In language, the sound and order of words  Deep structure: In language, the implicit meanings of sentences   Phonics: A method of teaching reading in English that focuses on the associated between letters and their phonemes  o Children learn to make the appropriate sounds for the letters, then spell out  words by how they sound  Whole Language: A method of teaching reading in English that emphasizes learning the  meanings of words and understanding how words are connected in sentences SUMMING UP:  According to linguistic theory, language determines, or at least influences,  thought   Behaviorists believe that language was learned through operant conditioning, but research demonstrates that children acquire language even in the  absence of reinforcement   People with dyslexia, a reading disorder, have trouble reading, spelling, and  writing even though they have normal levels of intelligence  8.4 How Do We Understand Intelligence?   Intelligence: The ability to use knowledge to reason, make reason, make  decisions, make sense of events, solve problems, understand complex ideas,  learn quickly, and adapt to environmental challenges   Psychometric approach: focuses on how people perform on standardized  tests that assess mental abilities  o Achievement tests: assess people’s current levels of skill and  knowledge  o Aptitude tests: seek to predict what tasks, and perhaps even what  jobs, people will be good at in the future   Mental age: An assessment of a child’s intellectual standing compared with  that of same age peers; determined by comparing the child’s test score with  the average score for the children of each chronological age  o EX: An 8 year old who is able to read Shakespeare and do calculus might score as well as an average 16 year old. This 8 year old  would have the mental age of a 16 year old   Intelligence quotient (IQ): An index of intelligence computed by dividing a  child’s estimated mental age by the child’s chronological age, then  multiplying this number by 100  General intelligence (g): the idea that one general factor underlies  intelligence  o Fluid intelligence: intelligence that reflects the ability to process  information, understand relationships, and think logically, particularly  in novel or complex circumstances   More like working memory   Declines steadily throughout the adult years  o Crystallized intelligence: intelligence that reflects both the  knowledge acquired through experience and the ability to use that  knowledge   More like long term memory   Grows steadily throughout the adult years  o Low g is related to early death from causes including heart disease,  diabetes, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, traffic accidents, and drownings  Three types of Intelligence:   Analytical intelligence: similar to that measured by psychometric tests o Being good at problem solving, completing analogies, figuring out puzzles,  and other academic challenges  Creative intelligence: involves the ability to gain insight and solve novel problems  o To think in new and interesting ways  Practical intelligence: refers to dealing with everyday tasks, such as knowing whether a  parking space is large enough for your vehicle, being a good judge of people, being an  effective leader, and so on.   Emotional Intelligence (EI):  A form of social intelligence that emphasizes the abilities  to manage, recognize, and understand emotions and use emotions to guide appropriate  thought and action  o People high in EI recognize emotional experiences in themselves and others,  then respond to those emotions productively  o Correlated with the quality of social relationships   Stereotype threat: Apprehension about confirming negative stereotypes related to one’s  own group  o EX: some people might experience this if they believe that their performance  on tests might confirm negative stereotypes about their racial group  o Causes distraction and anxiety  SUMMING UP:  Two commonly used intelligence tests are the Stanford­Binet test for children, and  the WAIS for adults  Savants have minimal intellectual capacities in most domains, but at a very early  age they show an exceptional ability in “intelligent” process   There is likely a genetic component to intelligence that involves many genes, but  environment plays a large role in how intelligence is expressed   Epigenetics offers an explanation for how intelligence may develop, by describing  how environmental influences such as enrichment and education can permit gene  expression to increase synaptic connections and brain efficiency to increase  intelligence   There is no overall difference in intelligence between men and women, although  men tend to score higher on standardized tests of math and visuospatial processing  and women often score higher on tests of writing and language use   People high on fluid intelligence have been found to have a greater density of neural  cell bodies (gray matter) in the frontal lobes, an area of the brain that regulates  working memory 


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