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Chapter 11 + 14

by: Emily Wu

Chapter 11 + 14 PSYCH 50

Emily Wu
GPA 4.105

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About this Document

notes for chapters 11 and 14 based on the reading guide
Intro to Cognitive Neuroscience
Justin Gardner
Class Notes
Psychology, Cognitive Neuroscience
25 ?




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This 6 page Class Notes was uploaded by Emily Wu on Friday March 11, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSYCH 50 at Stanford University taught by Justin Gardner in Winter 2016. Since its upload, it has received 22 views. For similar materials see Intro to Cognitive Neuroscience in Psychlogy at Stanford University.

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Date Created: 03/11/16
Chapter 11: Social Cognition    Introductory Box    ● autism spectrum disorder​neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by deficits in  communication, social interactions, repetitive stereotyped behaviors   ○ different from other disorders by having social deficits as core symptom  ○ DSM criteria: impairment using nonverbal behavior, failure to develop peer  relationships, failure to spontaneously share interests with others, lack of  social/emotional reciprocity   ○ difficulty processing faces, emotional expressions, and biological motion  ○ reduced activation in fusiform gyrus and amygdala when viewing faces   ○ difficulty integrating parts into wholes/synthesizing information  ○ difficulty following gaze/using gaze to infer other people’s intentions  ○ tend to analyze problems by applying rigid rules    The Self    ● self­reflexive thoug ability to consider one’s own being as an object, which is subject  to objective consideration   ○ being able to distinguish self from others, self­awareness  ● the “mark test”  ○ researcher places mark on forehead of animal visible only in the mirror →  self­recognition demonstrated if the animal repeatedly touches mark while  looking at mirror    Embodiment  ● the sense of being localized within one’s body  ● gives rise to sense of self­location (feeling of being at certain location) and egocentric  frame of reference (navigating world with reference to own viewpoint/spatial location)  ● temporoparietal junction at border between parietal/temporal lobes contributes to  out­of­body experiences    Perception of Social Cues Evident in the Face and Body    Face perception    ● pathway begins in occipital lobe upon seeing a face  ● divided into ventral and dorsal pathways that process in parallel   ● ventral: processes invariant aspects of face, discriminates faces from other objects and  other faces, includes fusiform face area → sent to anterior temporal lobe, where face is  linked with semantic/episodic knowledge about the person  ○ pathway important for person recognition  ● dorsal: processes changeable aspects of faces like perception of eye gaze and  expressions, superior temporal sulcus → limbic system (emotion processing), auditory  complex (speech perception), and intraparietal sulcus (spatial attention processing)   ● ventral pathway: occipital lobe → fusiform face area → anterior temporal lobe  ● dorsal pathway: occipital lobe → superior temporal sulcus → limbic system, auditory  complex, intraparietal sulcus     Interpersonal attention and action direction    ● social referencing use of body gestures/facial expressions of others to determine how to  act in an ambiguous situation   ● join attentio directing your attention to something that is cued by someone else   ○ variant of posner cuing task: subjects shown a face gazing left or right instead of  arrows, and subjects must respond when they detect the target stimulus   ○ findings: subjects are more willing to follow gaze even when its predictive value is  low, valid gaze cues improve target detection , invalid gaze cues show slower  reaction times     Perception of biological motion  ● perception of nonverbal communication starts in visual areas, relayed to superior  temporal sulcus (STS)   ● STS shows preference for body actions that are meaningful/goal­directed  ○ ex: hand gestures that complete an action sequence create more activity in STS  than random gestures   ● STS signals more when there is violation of expected behavior, such as when body  language is incongruent with person’s facial affect in a situation     Social Categorization     Stereotypes and automatic racial biases     ● Implicit Association Test (IA​subjects presented with African American or Caucasian  faces and also positive or negative words → asked to press different keys depending on  whether the word is good/bad, or if the face is African American/Caucasian  ○ one trial → key for African American face and bad words is the same, Caucasian  face and good words is the same  ○ another trial → key for African American face and good words is the same,  Caucasian face and bad words is the same   ○ implicit biases are tested by looking at difference in reaction times between the  two trials   ● startle responses and amygdala activity are related to implicit racial biases when seeing  an unfamiliar face of another race     Understanding the Actions and Emotions of Others    ● theory of mind: inferring the mental states of others, attributing actions of others to their  beliefs, goals, desires, feelings  ● mirror neurons: discovered in macaque monkeys in inferior prefrontal gyrus  ○ increase activity when grasping action is performed and also when grasping  action of another person/animal is viewed  ○ may be important in understanding empathy, theory of mind, and language  acquisition   ○ evidence for mirror neurons in humans is suggestive but do not have same  anatomical features as those found in monkeys    Theory of mind in children and apes    ● false­belief tasks: testing whether one can infer what another person will falsely believe  to be true   ○ location­change tasks: object placed in one location, and object is then moved to  another location without the other person knowing → subject must guess where  the other person will look for the object  ○ unexpected­content tasks: object placed in a container, and object is then  replaced with another object without the other person knowing → subject must  guess what the other person thinks is in the container   ○ theory of mind develops in humans at about 4 years old  Chapter 14: Decision Making    ● rational choice modelincorporate different features of a decision into an algorithm that  can evaluate/compare the different options  ● neuroeconomics: using neuroscience to help resolve issues in economics  ○ field emerged because researchers found that people don’t always make rational  choices, so the rational choice models failed to model this    From Rational Choice to Behavioral Economics    ● expected value multiplying the probability of each outcome by its associated reward  ○ how people should make decisions: select the option of highest expected value   ● utili psychological value assigned to an outcome, rather than economical  ○ ex: utility of a small increase in wealth is inversely proportional to a person’s  current wealth → diminishing marginal utility   ● prospect theor​attempts to predict what people ​ctuallchoose, rather than what  theyshould choose; depends on these two factors:  ○ reference dependence:​people make decisions in terms of anticipated  gains/losses compared to their current state  ■ both gains/losses have diminishing marginal effects   ○ probability weighti​people perceive probabilities in a very subjective manner  ■ tend to overestimate low probability events and underestimate high  probability events    Reward and Utility    Dopamine: pleasure or motivation?    ● dopamine: neurotransmitter responsible for evaluation of rewards  ○ damage to dopamine system can result in difficulty controlling motor movements  (Parkinson’s and Huntington’s diseases)  ● in the midbrain, two structures contain dopamine neuventral tegmental area (VTA),  substantia nigra  ● mesolimbic pathway: VTA project to nucleus accumbens in the basal ganglia →  amygdala, hippocampus, other cortical regions  ● nigrostriatal pathway: substantia nigra projects to dorsal striatum of basal ganglia   ● dopamine seems to support the motivation to pursue a reward  ○ activation of nucleus accumbens is elicited by motivationally relevant stimuli  (money, food, etc.)      Reward prediction error    ● changes in activity in dopamine neurons signal changes in information, not the rewards  themselves  ○ studies: VTA in humans increases in response when receiving unpredictable  rewards compared to predictable rewards  ● reward prediction error the difference between the received reward compared to what  was expected, also the change in information about future rewards  ● temporal difference learningsuccessive states of the world are correlated over time, so  our predictions about those states also change and correlate over time   ○ reward prediction error guides behavior through temporal difference learning    Social Context    Social cooperation    ● game theory:​ studies how decisions are made when multiple people are involved   ○ prisoner’s dilemma: two people are arrested → options for each are to rat out the  other person to police or stay silent; if both stay silent, both are jailed for shorter  time; if both rat each other out, both are jailed for longer time; if one rats the other  and the other stays silent, the silent one is jailed and the other walks free    ○ trust game: two people are given the same amount of starting money → the  investor gives portion of money to the trustee → amount of money given is  multiplied and added to trustee’s balance → trustee gives back a portion of his  money to the investor   ○ ultimatum game: one player (proposer) given some amount of money → he can  divide this money between himself and another player (responder) → responder  can accept or reject this division → rejection of division results in no money for  both players   ○ over many trials in these games, consistent cooperation yields best outcome     Heuristics in Decision Making    ● heuristics:allow people to simplify complex decisions by following a set of rules  ○ satisficing making a choice that is “good enough” simply because there are too  many choices (like grocery shopping)  ○ anchoring heuristic: tendency to refer to reference points to bias future judgments  (comparing prices of two items to determine value)   ○ endowment effect:​  people require more money when they are selling something  they own than they would be willing to spend to buy the same thing   ○ framing effect when actual outcomes are held constant but the way in which they  are seen differs (people like to choose things that are framed as gains rather than  losses)     


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