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Tuesday 10/11/16 Lecture Notes

by: Izabella Brock

Tuesday 10/11/16 Lecture Notes PSYC 1301

Izabella Brock

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About this Document

These notes cover the Powerpoint and what the Professor spoke about in class.
Introduction to Psychology
Dr. Zarate
Class Notes
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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Izabella Brock on Tuesday October 11, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSYC 1301 at University of Texas at El Paso taught by Dr. Zarate in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 5 views. For similar materials see Introduction to Psychology in Psychology (PSYC) at University of Texas at El Paso.

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Date Created: 10/11/16
PSYC 1301 Oct 11, 2016 Lecture Notes Class Info: th § If you have at least 3 Sona credits by this Friday (14 ) and a fourth credit will be given for free § Class Notes: Chapter 7 – Thinking, Language, and Intelligence § Topics: o Thinking and problem solving o Language o Intelligence § Race effects § Gender effects o A bit more deviation from the book § Thinking, language, and intelligence: basic terms o Cognition: mental activities involved in acquiring, retaining, and using knowledge o Thinking: manipulation of mental representation of information in order to draw inferences and conclusions o Mental image: mental representation of objects or events that are not physically present § The building Blocks of Thought o Thinking often involves the manipulation of two forms of mental representations: mental images and mental concepts o Mental representations are manipulated in the same way as an actual image, using all the senses § The building blocks of thought o Concepts: mental category of objects or ideas based on shared properties o Formal concept: mental category formed by learning rules o Natural concept: § Mental category formed by everyday ex § Boundaries are “fuzzy” and not always sharply defined o Prototype: best, or most typical, example of a particular concept o Exemplars: individual instances § Concepts: o Provide a mental shorthand by economizing cognitive effort o Formed by learning defined rule or features (formal concept) § Simple § Complex o Formed as a result of everyday experience (natural concept) § Prototypes § Exemplars § Brain Activation During Perception and Mental Imagery PSYC 1301 Oct 11, 2016 Lecture Notes o Mental images are manipulated in much the same way as the actual objects they represent o Mental images of things seen visually are not perfect duplicates of actual sensory experience: are memories of the visual images o Like other memories visual images are actively constructed and potentially subject to error § Solving Problems and Making Decisions o Problem-solving strategies § Trial and error § Algorithms § Heuristics § Useful heuristics § Effective Problem Solving o Well defined vs. ill defined problems o Barriers to effective problem solving: § Irrelevant information § Functional fixedness § Mental set § Unnecessary constraints § Insight and Intuition o Insight § Involves sudden realization of how a problem can be solved § Only rarely occurs through conscious manipulation of concepts or information o Intuition § Involves reaching conclusion or making a judgment without conscious awareness of the through processes involved • Guiding stage • Integrative stage § Obstacles to Solving Problems: Thinking Outside the Box o Functional fixedness § Involves tendency to view objects as functioning only into their usual or customary way o Mental set § Refers to the tendency to persist in solving problems with solutions that have worked in the past § May prevent seeing other possible solutions, especially in areas in which one is knowledgeable or well trained § Can sometimes suggest a useful heuristic § Decision-Making Strategies o Different cognitive strategies are used when making decisions, depending on the type and number of options available to us • Single-feature model – a decision by focusing on only one feature • Additive model – systematically evaluate the important features of each alternative PSYC 1301 Oct 11, 2016 Lecture Notes • Elimination by aspects model – rate choices based on features; eliminate those that do not meet the desired criteria, despite other desirable characteristics § Estimating the Probability of Events: Decisions Involving Uncertainty o The Availability Heuristic § Probability of an event is judged by how easily previous occurrences of the event can be recalled § The less accurately our memory of an event reflects the actual frequency of the event, the less accurate our estimate of the event’s likelihood will be § The availability heuristic is more likely to be used when people rely on information held in their long-term memory to determine the likelihood of event occurring o Representativeness heuristic refers to the likelihood of an event and estimated by comparing how similar it is to the prototype of the event o Faulty estimates can be produced if: § Possible prototype variations are not considered § Approximate number of existing prototypes are not considered § The Persistence of Unwarranted Beliefs: obstacles to Logical Thinking o Obstacle 1: Belief-bias effect o Obstacle 2: Confirmation bias o Obstacle 3: Fallacy of positive instances o Obstacle 4: Overestimation effect § Language Characteristics o Language is a system for combining arbitrary symbols to produce an infinite number of meaningful statements § Displacement – language can communicate meaningfully about ideas, objects, and activities that are not physically present § Generativity – language is creative, or generative; it can generate an infinite number of new and different phrases and sentences § Explaining Language Development o Childhood is a critical period for fully developing certain aspects of language. Children never exposed to any language (spoken or signed) by about age 7 gradually lose their ability to master any language § The Effect of Language on Perception o Whorfian Hypothesis § Whorf (1956): Language determines the very structure of thoughts and perceptions § Whorfian hypothesis also called the linguistic relativity hypothesis § Whorf’s strong contention that language determines perception and structure of thought has not been supported § Language use, however, has been found to influence particular concepts, as in mathematics § Bilingualism: Learning More Thank One Language o Research findings: PSYC 1301 Oct 11, 2016 Lecture Notes § Smaller vocabularies in one language, combined vocabularies average § Higher scores for middle-class bilingual subjects on cognitive flexibility, analytical reasoning, selective attention, and metalinguistic awareness § Slight disadvantage in terms of language processing speed § Bilingualism o Typically, one language is dominant o As compared to monolinguals, bilinguals: § Have delayed knowledge of syntactical rules § Exhibit heightened awareness of language structure and usage (metalinguistic ability) o If second language is learned early, the two languages use similar brain structures § Second Language Learning and Critical Periods o Evidence that younger children are superior to adults at learning language: § Fluency failures of language-deprived children (e.g., Genie) § Immigrants who arrived in the U.S. after age 7 were less proficient English speakers (especially for syntax and pronunciation) § Rare cases of deprived children show they rarely learn language well Thinking Exercise: Problem: You have two candles, some thumbtacks, and a box of matches. Using just these objects, try to figure out how to mount the candles on a wall. Answer: You might think you could use a match to melt the end of a candle and adhere it to the wall, but in reality the solution is right in front of you. Using the tacks to adhere the box to the wall and setting the candles atop said box is the most efficient way of solving this classic problem.


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