Myers' AP Psych Unit 3

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(PET) Positron emission tomography scan

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100 Terms

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(PET) Positron emission tomography scan

A visual display of brain activity that shows each brain area's consumption of its chemical fuel, the sugar glucose (active neurons are glucose hogs)

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Acetylcholine (ACH)

enables muscle action, learning and memory. In Alzheimer's disease, ACh-producing neurons deteriorate

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action potential

a neural impulse; a brief electrical charge that travels down an axon.

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Adrenal glands

a pair of endocrine glands that sit just above the kidneys and secrete hormones (epinephrine and norepinephrine) that help arouse the body in times of stress - increase heart rate, blood pressure, and blood sugar to provide a surge of energy

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Agonist

A chemical that mimics the action of a neurotransmitter.

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all-or-none response

neurons either fire or they don't

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Amygdala

2 Lima bean sized neural clusters in the limbic system that influence emotions such as aggression and fear-also processes emotional memories-not the only structure that can evoke aggressive behavior

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angular gyrus

involved in reading aloud. Damage leaves a person able to speak and understand, but unable to read aloud

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Antagonists

Chemical substances that block or reduce a cell's response to the action of other chemicals or neurotransmitters.

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Aphasia

impairment of language, usually caused by Left Hemisphere damage to Brocas area or Wernickes.

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Autonomic nervous system

the part of the peripheral nervous system that controls the glands and the muscles of the internal organs. It's sympathetic system arouses and parasympathetic calms.

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axon

the neuron extension that passes and electrical messages through its branches to other neurons or to muscles or glands.

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behavior genetics

the study of the relative power and limits of genetic and environmental influences on behavior

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biological psychologists

the scientific study of the links between biological and psychological processes.

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biopsychosocial system

each individual is this kind of system: their cells make organs, their organs make up an individual and its processes, and the individual is part of a family, culture, community

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Brainstem

the oldest part and central core of brain. AKA reticular formation, or reticular activating system. In charge of automatic survival functions

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Broca's area

controls language expression. Damage creates inability to muscles in left hemisphere connected to speech. Damage disrupts speaking

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Central nervous system (CNS)

the brain and the spinal cord

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Cerebellum

"little brain" at the rear of the brainstem; functions including processing sensory input, coordinating voluntary movement output and balance, and enabling nonverbal learning and memory.

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Cerebral cortex

Fabric of interconnected neuron cells. Higher order thinking. Takes meaning and puts it to focus. The body's ultimate control and information-processing center.-expands as we move up the ladder of animal life. Greater capacity for learning means better adaptability

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Charles Darwin

English natural scientist who formulated a theory of evolution by natural selection

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chromosome

threadlike structure made of DNA molecules that contain the genes

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Cognitive Neuroscience

The interdisciplinary study of the brain activity linked with cognition. (including perception, thinking, memory and language.)

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Consciousness

our awareness of ourselves and our environment.

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Corpus Callosum

Large band of neural fibers connecting the two brain hemispheres and carrying messages between them.

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CT (computed tomography) scan

a series of x-ray photographs taken from different angles and combined by computer into a composite representation of a slice through the body. Also called a CAT scan

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dendrites

the bushy, branching extensions of a neuron that receive messages and conduct impulses toward the cell body.

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DNA

(deoxyribonucleic acid) a complex molecule containing the genetic information that makes up the chromosomes

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Dopamine

Influences movement, learning, attention, and emotion. Oversupply linked to schizophrenia. Undersupply linked to Parkinson's.

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Dual Processing

a phenomenon can occur in two different ways, or as a result of two different processes, The principle that information is often simultaneously processed on separate conscious and unconscious tracks

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Electroencephalogram (EEG)

An amplified recording of the waves of electrical activity that sweep across the brain's surface. These waves are measured by electrodes placed on the scalp.

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Endocrine system

the body's "slow" chemical communication system; a set of glands that secrete hormones into the bloodstream-hormones influence many aspects of our lives: growth, reproduction, metabolism, mood-works with nervous system to keep everything in balance while we respond to stress, exertion, and out own thoughts

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endorphins

"morphine within"—natural, opiate-like neurotransmitters linked to pain control and to pleasure.

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environment

every nongenetic influence, from prenatal nutrition to the people and things around us, Every nongenetic influence, from prenatal nutrition to the people and things around us.

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Epigenetics

The study of environmental influences on gene expression that occur without a DNA change.

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Evolutionary Psychologists

The study of the evolution of behavior and the mind, using principles of natural selection.

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excitatory neurotransmitter

neurotransmitter that excites a neuron into firing

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fMRI (functional MRI)

A technique for revealing bloodflow and, therefore, brain activity by comparing successive MRI scans. fMRI scans show brain function.

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fraternal twins

twins who develop from separate fertilized eggs; no genetically closer than brothers and sisters, but they share a fetal environment

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Frontal Lobes

the portion of the cerebral cortex lying just behind the forehead; involved in speaking and muscle movements and in making plans and judgements.

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GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid)

A major inhibitory neurotransmitter. Undersupply linked to seizures, tremors, and insomnia.

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genes

the biochemical units of heredity that make up the chromosomes; segments of DNA capable of synthesizing a protein

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genome

the complete instructions for making an organism, consisting of all the genetic material in that organism's chromosomes

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Glial Cells

Cells in the nervous system that support, nourish, and protect neurons. Proportion of glia to neurons increases as you move t up the ladder of animal life

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Glutamate

A major excitatory neurotransmitter; involved in memory. Oversupply can overstimulate the brain, producing migraines or seizures (which is why some people avoid MSG, monosodium glutamate, in food.)

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heritability

the proportion of variation among individuals that we can attribute to genes; this may vary depending on population range and the environment being studied

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Hippocampus

Limbic system. Learning and memory matcher.

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Hormones

chemical messengers that are manufactured by the endocrine glands, travel through the bloodstream, and affect other tissues

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hypothalamus

A neural structure lying below the thalamus, it directs several maintenance activities (eating, drinking, body temperature), helps govern the endocrine system via the pituitary gland (can secrete hormones to trigger the adjacent pituitary), and is linked to emotion and reward.

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identical twins

twins who develop from a single fertilized egg that splits in two, creating two genetically identical organisms

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inhibitory neurotransmitter

neurotransmitter that inhibits a neuron from firing

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interaction

the interplay that occurs when the effect of one factor (such as environment) depends on another factor (such as heredity)

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interneurons

neurons within the brain and spinal cord that communicate internally and intervene between the sensory inputs and motor outputs.

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Karl Wernicke

"Wernicke's area"; discovered area of left temporal lobe that involved language understanding: person damaged in this area uses correct words but they do not make sense

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Lesion

tissue destruction. It can occur naturally or experimentally by the caused destruction/remove of brain tissues

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Limbic system

A system of neural structures at the border of brainstem. Associated with emotions like fear, aggression, and drives such as those for food and sex. Includes the Hippocampus, Amygdala and hypothalamus.

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Medulla

The base of the brainstem. Controls heartbeat and breathing.

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molecular geneticists

subfield of biology that study the molecular structure and function of genes

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motor cortex

an area at the rear of the frontal lobes that controls voluntary movements.

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motor neurons

neurons that carry outgoing information from the brain and spinal cord to the muscles and glands.

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MRI (magnetic resonance imaging)

a TECHNIQUE THAT USES MAGNETIC FIELDS AND RADIO WAVES TO PRODUCE COMPUTER generated images that distinguish among different types of soft tissues.

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multiple sclerosis

condition caused by degeneration of the myelin sheath. Communication to muscles slows, with eventual loss of muscle control

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Mutations

A random error in gene replication that leads to a change

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myelin sheath

a layer of fatty tissue segmentally encasing the fibers of many neurons; enables vastly greater transmission speed of neural impulses as the impulse hops from one node to the next.

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Natural Selection

the principle that, among range of inherited trait variations, those that lead to increased reproduction and survival will most likely be passed on to succeeding generations

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nerves

bundled axons that form neural "cables" connecting the central nervous system with muscles, glands, and sense organs.

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Nervous system

the body's speedy, electrochemical communication network, consisting of all the nerve cells of the peripheral and central nervous systems

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nervous system

the body's speedy, electrochemical communication network, consisting of all the nerve cells of the peripheral and central nervous systems.

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Neurogenesis

Formation of new neurons

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neuron

a nerve cell; the basic building block of the nervous system.

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neurotransmitters

chemical messengers that cross the synaptic gaps between neurons. When released by the sending neuron, they travel across the synapse and bind to receptor sites on the receiving neuron, thereby influencing whether that neuron will generate a neural impulse.

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Norepinephrine

A neurotransmitter that influences mood and arousal. Undersupply can depress mood.

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Occipital lobes

the portion of the cerebral cortex lying at the back of the head; includes the visual areas, which receive visual info from the opposite visual field.

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Parasympathetic nervous system

the division of the autonomic nervous system that calms the body, conserving its energy (Your PARents come home and calm you down)

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Parietal lobes

The portion of the cerebral cortex lying at the top of the head and toward the rear; includes the sensory cortex. Receives sensory input for touch and body position.

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Paul Broca

discovered area in the brain (named for him) in the left frontal lobe responsible for language production

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Peripheral nervous system (PNS)

the sensory and motor neurons that connect the central nervous system to the rest of the body

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Phineas Gage

Railroad worker who survived a severe brain injury that dramatically changed his personality and behavior; case played a role in the development of the understanding of the localization of brain function

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phrenology

Franz Gall (early 1800s): theory that claimed bumps on the skull could reveal mental abilities and character traits. Debunked but did correctly focus attention on the idea that brain regions have particular functions

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Pituitary gland

"THE MASTER GLAND" the endocrine system's most influential gland-under the influence of the hypothalamus, the pituitary regulates growth and controls other endocrine glands

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Plasticity

The brain's ability to change, especially during childhood, by reorganizing after damage or by building new pathways based on experience.

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Pons

helps coordinate movements; sits just above the medulla and is part of brainstem

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Reflexes

simple, automatic responses to sensory stimuli, such as the knee-jerk response

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refractory period

a period of inactivity after a neuron has fired.

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resting potential

positive-outside/negative-inside state of ions around a resting axon

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Reticular Formation

part of brainstem; filters incoming sensory input and relays important information to other areas of the brain; plays an important role in controlling arousal.

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reuptake

a neurotransmitter's reabsorption by the sending neuron.

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Roger Sperry

scientist who won a Nobel Prize for work with SPLIT BRAIN patients

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selectively permeable

describes the axon's surface; it only allows in certain things at certain times

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Sensory cortex

the area at the front of the parietal lobes that registers and processes body touch and movement sensations.

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sensory neurons

neurons that carry incoming information from the sensory receptors to the brain and spinal cord.

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Serotonin

Affects mood, hunger, sleep and arousal. Undersupply linked to depression.

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Somatic nervous system

the division of the peripheral nervous system that controls the body's skeletal muscles (skeletal nervous system)

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Split Brain

A conditioning resulting from surgery that isolates the brain's two hemispheres by cutting the fibers connecting them.

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Sympathetic nervous system

the division of the autonomic nervous system that arouses the body, mobilizing its energy in stressful situations. (If you get scared)

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synapse

the junction between the axon tip of the sending neuron and the dendrite or cell body of the receiving neuron. The tiny gap at this junction is called the synaptic gap or synaptic cleft.

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Temporal lobes

The portion of the cerebral cortex lying roughly above the ears; includes the auditory areas, each of which receives auditory info primarily from the opposite end.

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Thalamus

the brains 'sensory switch board' Located at top of brainstem; receives info from all the senses except smell and routes it to the sensory areas-also transmits higher brain's replies to cerebellum and medulla

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threshold

the level of stimulation required to trigger a neural impulse.

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Wernickes area

Controls language reception. Damage creates inability to comprehend language; usually in the left temporal lobe

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