PSY 325 Week 8 Notes
PSY 325 Week 8 Notes PSY 325
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This 6 page Class Notes was uploaded by Lauren Toomey on Monday March 21, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSY 325 at Colorado State University taught by Karla Gingerich in Winter 2016. Since its upload, it has received 18 views. For similar materials see Psychology of Personality in Psychlogy at Colorado State University.
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Date Created: 03/21/16
Lecture 19: The Biological Approach (Ch. 8) Monday, March 7, 2016 1:02 PM Ch. 8 = the anatomy and physiology of personality • Research Methods • Damage/lesion: an obstruction to any part of the brain • Stimulation studies: o TMS= transcranial magnetic stimulation • Either excite or inhibit the neurons to see activity flow or inhibited across the cortex • These stimulations effect phyisiology of the body o EEG= electroencephallography • Can show where the stimulation occurs, but nothin g more than that • Ex. Can show activity in frontal lobe, but nothing else o Positron emission tomography (PET) • Glucose injected in blood, and can show where it comes out of the brain on the screen • Oxygen in the blood • Biology of Personality: Charles Whitman • Killed his wife and mother the same night • Killed 14, and wounded many others with a high power rifle from top of a building, until shot by police • Tumor found pressing against amygdala • Parkinson's patient: similar story • Underwent deep brain stimulation • Depressed as soon as substantia nigra was stimulated by electrodes • "…I'm fed up with life, I've had enough, don't want to live anymore…" when stimulated • This indicates a biological influence on depression • The Amygdala • Hard to pinpoint what exactly is happe ning in personality when there is so much going on with the brain • Amygdala- Lesion Studies • Kluver-Bucy syndrome (1950s) o Bilateral amygdala lesions in rhesus monkeys • Less aggressive • Less fearful • Strange feeding behavior • Hypersexuality • More docile • What does this have to do with personality? o Emotions: • Highly active in fear and anger processing • Is also active in al other emotional processing (after having spread from amygdala) • Patient SM § Inability to regulate emotions (no control at all) o Social Judgments • Bilateral lesions • View all facial expressions as approachable and trustworthy o Shy people • Amygdala is Highly active when shown people they don't known • Most likely due to a fear response (heightened fearful response) • Anxiety Disorders o Amygdala Highly active in people with PTSD and panic disorder • Positive emotions o Amygdala active during social attraction and sexual responsiveness o Pleasurable stimuli (happy pictures) • Personality aspects that are affected by amygdala o Anxiety o Fearfulness o Etc. • The Frontal Lobes • Important in emotional control • Left lobe-- involved in pursuing pleasant stimuli and dampen the effects of bad stimuli (e.g. not being able to afford good food) • Right lobe-- withdraw from unpleasant stimuli • Good old Phineas Gage o Effects on his personality: • Became indulgent, profane, selfish • Unintelligent • Case study: "Elliott" o Tumor in frontal lobe, causing severe damage to the cortex o Same symptoms as Phineas Gage • Now it can be replicated o Exact same results • These results have led to: o The Somatic marker Hypothesis : emotions allow us to make cognitive decisions • Frontal Lobes-- cognition and emotion • The frontal lobes all us to entwine cognition with emotion • A stimuli may provoke an emotional response, which then leads to cognition o Example: you can't focus on a class that you don't feel passionate about, which affects your cognition • For example, imagine seeing a loved one, but not experiencing any emotion o This might explain why we feel more emotions, which lead to more cognition • Conclusion of Frontal L obes o Emotional and control processing o Cognition o Intelligence o Decision making • If we don't have the desire to achieve or learn (cognition), it affects our personality (conscientiousness, etc.) • The Anterior Cingulate Cortex • Function of it is still largely unk nown • Key part of frontal lobe/amygdala circuit • Needed to experience normal emotion (connected to amygdala) o Interruption may make emotions inaccurate • As well as controlling emotional response (Charles Whitman) • Believed to be involved in understanding social cues and norms o Elicits negative emotions when things don't match -- i.e. mismatch between what's expected vs what is actually presented • Neurotransmitters • Chemical messengers in the brain • Cause either excitation or inhibition • Dopamine-- Psychological Aspects o Reward, excitement o Gives us motivation and reward o Sociability o General activity level o Novelty seeking o Manic o Dopaminergic symptoms are known for fluctuations in excitement and sadness o Related to extraversion and openness to experience • More receptors to dopamine cause them to seek out rewarding stimuli -- "supply and demand" • Dopamine- Physical aspects o Movement initiation and control • When the dopaminergic neurons die, you get Parkinson's disease § To treat Parkinson's, patients get L -Dopa to replace the mi ssing dopamine (temporary cure) • Serotonin o Acts as a sheld against your environment and your own decision making o Reduces the intensity of negative emotion • Anxiety, dperession, etc. • Prevents you from getting angry easily, being overly sensitive, etc. o You don't get a rush from serotonin, like people think o Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRI) • Increases the amount of serotonin in the brain • Used to treat depression • Epinephrine o Fight or flight, in response to stress o Increase in alertness, heart rate increases, digestion stops, muscles tense (entire sympathetic nervous system) o Epinephrine = adrenaline o Slightly different in women • "Tend and befriend" instead of fight or flight • Mainly caused by oxytocin, rather than epinephrine • Norepinephrine o Reverse of epinephrine o Turns off fight or flight and the symp. System o Also seen in long term relationships, while dopamine is seen in short term relationships • Testosterone (hormone) o 10 times higher in males o Linked to higher levels of aggression, sexual beha viors, use of hard drugs, and excessive behavior • Don’t know the direction of correlation between the behavior and the hormone o Males who act more dominant have higher levels of testosterone o Fathers have lower levels of testosterone (Funder says this is beca use dads chill out and focus on being good fathers, rather than dominating or being primitive) o This is correlational, not causational Lecture 20: Biological Aspects of Personality Wednesday, March 9, 2016 1:03 PM • Cortisol • High levels of cortisol is linked to severe stress, anxiety, and depression • Social phobias • However, cortisol might be the product of high neuroticism, rather than the cause of it o Understand that we don't always know directionality of correlation • Chronically low levels of cortisol is linked to PTSD o This one is interesting because we associate stress with high cortisol levels o As well as high sensation seeking • Oxytocin • The "love hormone" • Higher in women • Correlated to relationship bonding o Mother-child relationship, etc. • As well as relationship protection o Defending a child, partner, etc. • Increases generosity towards strangers Ch. 9: The inheritance of Personality - Behavioral Genetics and Evolutionary Psychology • Behavioral Genetics • What is it? o Traits! o "Trait genetics" - Funder o Controversy • Controversy o Eugenics: the thought that selective breeding could and should be used to improve the gene pool (red flag!) • Came from the belief that genes completely dictated everything about us o But in reality, environment plays a big role in determining who we are • Heritability • Heritability coefficient o Think of it as a percentage o The degree to which variation between people is due to their genetics • Heritability of traits in twins o 0.40 heritability coefficient o Meaning: 40% of the difference in b ehavior is due to their genetics o Slightly higher for big five • .42 for agreeableness and .57 for openness to experience o Important to note… • Heritability refers to averages of populations § Not individual differences • So what does heritability tell us? o Traits are influenced by genes o The Big Five correlations • Extraversion: .54 • Agreeableness: .42 • Conscientiousness: . 49 • Neuroticism: .48 • Openness: .57 • Environmental Influence • Personality is a combination of nature and nurture • Family Environment o Look at this environment to see how if influences personality from childhood o Influences juvenile delinquency, aggression, love styles o Influences conduct disorder, rebelliousness, anxiety, and depression • What heritability Can't tell us • The heritability coefficient assumes variation • Thus, if a trait was completely genetic, the equation would be impossible to calculate • A biological trait could have 0 heritability • Heritability doesn't explain how genes affect personality o Divorce is heritable o TV watching is heritable o But how are genes influencing this? • Knowing that divorce is heritable doesn’t tell us which trait is influencing this, or which gene is influencing that trait • Molecular Genetics • How specific genes influence our personalities • DRD4 Gene o Effects the development of dopamine receptors (sensation seeking, reward, motivation) o Different forms of the gene affect levels of sensation seeking • This is because of its effect on the dopaminergic system o Also affects ADHD • Since dopamine is involved with brain regulatio n • 5-HTT gene o Associated with the serotonin transporter protein (serotonin transportation) o The "short gene" variation is related to high neuroticism • The short 5-HTT gene is in about 75% of the Japanese Population • While only in about 25% of the Caucasian Population • Might explain differences in culture (individualistic vs. collectivistic) • COMT gene o Associated with higher levels of dopamine in the prefrontal cortex o Linked to extraversion, and critical reasoning • Gene-environment interactions • "Genes cannot cause anybody to do anything, any more than you can live in the blueprint of your house" -Funder o Genes are our foundation -- born with them, begin our existence o But at the end of the day, we still choose what we want to do o The genotype provides the design, thus influencing personality as it develops with the environment • IQ o Those who have the opportunity can achieve their full genetic potential • Bullying o For example, being teased for being short may lead to long term personality impact • Sensation seeking o Seek out specific environments because of genetic predisposition • Extraversion o People who are more attractive or physically strong tend to be more extraverted
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