Key AP Psych Terms (Frangia)

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Behaviorism

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Psychology

159 Terms

1

Behaviorism

The view that psychology (1) should be an objective science that (2) studies behavior without reference to mental processes, most resarch scientists today agree with (1) but not (2).

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2

Humanistic Psychology

Historically significant perspective that emphasized te growth potential of healthy people and the individual’s potential for personal growth.

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Psychology

The science of behavior and mental processes.

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4

Evolutionary Psychology

The study of the roots of behavior and mental processes using the principles of natural selection.

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Cognitive Psychology

The scietific study of all the mental activities associated with thinking, knowing, remembering and communicating.

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6

Structuralism

An early school of psychology that used introspection to explore the structural elements of the human mind.

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Hypothesis

A testable preiction, often implied by a theory.

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Operational Definition

A statement of the procedures (operations) used to define research variables. For example, humane intelligence may be operationally defined as what an intelligence test measures.

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Case Study

An observation technique in which one person is studied in depth in the hope of revealing universal principles.

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10

Survey

A technique for ascertaining the self-reported attitudes of behaviors of a particular group, usually by questioning a representative, random sample of the group.

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Population

All the cases in a group being studied, from which samples may be drawn.

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Correlation

A measure of the extent to which two factors vary together, and thus of how well either factor predicts the other.

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13

Experiment

A research method in which an investigator manipulates one or more factors to observe the effect on some behavior or mental process. By random assignment of participants, the experimenter aims to control other relevant factors.

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Placebo Effect

Experimental results cause be expectations alone; any effect on behavior cause by the administration of an inert substance or condition, which the recipient assumes is an active agent.

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Independent Variable

The experimental factor that is manipulated; the variable whose effect is being studied.

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Dependent Variable

The outcome factor; the variable that may change in response to manipulations of the independent variable.

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17

Mean

The arthimetic average of a distribution obtained by adding the scores and then dividing by the number of scores.

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Standard Deviation

A computed measure of how much scores vary around the mean score.

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19

Psychoanalysis

Freud’s theory of personality that attributes thought and actions to unconcious motives and conflicts; the techniques used in treating psychological disorders by seeking to expose and interpret unconcious tensions

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Unconcious

According to Freud, a resevoir of mostly unnacceptable thoughts, wishes, feelings and memories. According to contemporary psychologists, information processing of which we are unaware.

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Id

A resevoir of unconscious psychic energy that, according to Freud, strives to satisfy basic sexual and agressive drives. The id operates on the pleasure seeking principle, demanding immediate gratification.

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Ego

The largely conscious, “executive” part of personality that, according to Freud, mediates among the demands of the id, superego, and reality. The ego operatets on the reality principle, satisfying the id’s desires in ways that will realistically bring pleasure rather than pain.

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23

Superego

The part of personality that, according to Freud, represents internalized ideals and provides standards for judgement (the conscience) and for future aspirations.

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24

Fixation

According to Freud, a lingering focus on pleasure-seeking energies at an earlier psychosexual stage in which conflicts were unresolved.

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Defense Mechanism

In psychoanalytic theory, the ego’s protective methods of reducing anxiety by unconsciously distorting reality.

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Repression

In psychoanalytic theory, the basic defense mechanism that banishes anxiety arousing thoughts, feelings, and memories from consciousness.

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Regression

Pscyhoanalitic defense mechanism in which an individual faced w/ anxiety refers to a more infantile pscyhosexual stage, where some psychic energy remains fixated.

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Reaction Formation

Pscyhoanalitic defense mechanism by which the ego unconsciously switches unacceptable impulses into their opposites. Thus, people may express feelinds that are the opposite of their anxiety-arousing unconscious feelings.

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Projection

Psychoanalytic defense mechanism by which people disguise their own threatening impulses b attributing them to others.

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30

Projective Test

A personality test, such as the Rorschach or TAT, that provides ambiguous stimuli designed to trigger projection of one’s inner dynamics.

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Thematic Apperception Test (TAT)

A projective test in which people express their inner feelings and interests through the stories they make up about ambiguous scenes.

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Rorschach Inkblot Test

The most widely used projective test, a set of 10 inkblots, designed by Hermann Rorschach; seeks to identify people inner feelings by analyzing their interpretation of the blots.

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33

Self-actualization

epresAccording to Maslow, one of the ultimate psychological needs that arises after basic physical and psychological needs are met and self-esteem is achieved; the motivation to fill one’s potential.

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34

Self Serving Bias

A readiness to perceive oneself favorably.

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35

Short Term Memory

Activated memory that holds a few items briefly, such as the seven digits of a phone number while dialing, before the information is stored or forgotten.

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36

Long Term Memory

The realitively permanent and limitless storehouse of the memory system. Includes knowledge, skills, and experience.

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37

Echoic Memory

A momentary sensory memory of auditory stimuli; if attention is elsewhere, sounds and words can still be recalled within 3-4 seconds.

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38

Procedural Memory

Retention independent of conscious recollection.

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39

Hippocampus

A neural center that is located in the limbic system; helps process explicit memories for storage.

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40

Recall

A measaure of memory in which the person must retrieve information learned earlier, as on a fill-in-the-blank test.

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41

Priming

The activation, often unconsciously, of particular associations in memory.

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42

Concept

A mental grouping of similar objects, events, ideas, or people.

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43

Algorithm

A methodical, logical rule or procedure that guarantees solving a particular problem. Contrasts with the usually speedier - but also more error prone use of heuristics.

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44

Heuristic

A simple thinking strategy that often allows us to make judgements and solve problems efficiently, ususally speedier but also more error-prone thant algorithms.

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45

Insight

A sudden and often novel realization of the solution to a problem; it contrasts with strategy-based solutions.

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46

Representative Heuristic

Judging the likelihood of things in terms of how well they see to represent, or match, particular prototypes; may lead us to ignore other relevant information

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47

Availability Heurisitic

Estimating the likelihood of events based on their availability in memory; if instances come readily to mind (perhaps because of their vividness) we presume such events are common.

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48

Conformation Bias

A tendency to search for information that supports our preconceptions and to ignore or distort controdicting evidence.

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49

Functional Fixedness

The tendency to think of things only in terms of their usual functions; an impediment to problem solving.

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50

Language

Our spoken written, or signed words and the ways we combine them to communicate meaning.

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51

Phenome

In language, the smallest distinctive sound unit.

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52

Morpheme

In a language, the smallest unit that carries meaning; may be a word or a part of a word (such as a prefix)

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53

Divergent Thinking

Thinking outside the box.

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54

Episodic Memory

A subdivision of declaritive memory that stores memories of personal experiences and events.

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55

Habituation

An organism’s decreasing response to a stimulus with repeated exposure to it.

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56

Classical Conditioning

A type of learning in which one learns to link two or more stimului and anticipate events.

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Unconditioned Stimulus

In classical conditioning, a stimulus that unconditionally - naturally and automatically - triggers a response.

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58

Conditioned Stimulus

In classical conditioning, an originally irrelevant stimulus that, after association with an unconditioned stimulus (US), comes to trigger a conditioned response.

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59

Extinction

The diminishing of a conditioned response; occurs in classical conditioning when a US doesn’t follow a CS; occurs in operant condition when a response is no longer reinforced,

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Spontaneous Recovery

The reappearance after a pause, of an extinguished conditioned response.

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Generalization

The rendency, once a response has been conditioned, for stimuli similar to the conditioned stimulus to elicit responses.

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Discrimination

In classical conditioning, the learned ability to distinguish between a CS and stmuli that don’t signal a US.

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63

Learned Helplessness

The hopelessness and passive resignation an animal or human learns when unable to avoid repeated aversive events.

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Operant Conditioning

A type of learning in which behavior is strengthened if followed by a reinforcer or diminished followed by a punisher.

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Shaping

An operant conditioning procedure in which reinforcers guide behavior toward closer and closer approximations of the desired behavior.

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66

Reinforce

In operant conditioning, any event that strengthens the behavior it follows.

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67

Positive Reinforcement

Increasing behaviors by presenting positive stimuli, such as food. A positive reinforce is any stimulus that, when presented after a response, strengthens the response.

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Negative Reinforcement

Increasing behaviors by stopping or reducing negative stimuli, such as shock. A negative reinforce is any stimuli that, when removed after a response, strengthens the response (negaive reinforcement is not punishment.)

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Fixed-Interval Schedule

In operant conditioing, a reinforcement schedule that reinforces a response only after a specified time has elapsed.

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Punishment

An event that decreases the behavior that it follows.

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Latent Learning

Learning that occurs but is not apparent until there is an incentive to demonstrate it.

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72

Intrinsic Motivation

A desire to perform a behavior effectively for its own sake.

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73

Observational Learning

Learning by observing others (also called social learning.)

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Modeling

The process of observing and imitating a specific behavior.

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Conditioned Response

In classical conditioning, the initial stage, hen one links a neural stimulus and an unconditioned stimulus so that the neural stimulus begins triggering the conditioned response. In operant conditioning, the strengthening of a reinforced response.

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76

Unconditioned Response

In classical conditioning, the unlearned, naturally occuring response to the unconditioned stimulus (us), such as salivation when food is in the mouth.

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77

Developmental Psychology

A branch of psychology that studies physical, cognitive, and social change throughout the life span.

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78

Maturation

Biological growth processes that enable orderly changes in behavior, relatively uninfluenced by experience.

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79

Schema

A concept or frame work that organizes and interprets information.

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80

Assimilation

Interpreting our new experiences in terms of our existing schemas.

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81

Accomodation

Adapting our current understanding (schemas) to incorporate new information.

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82

Object Permanence

The awareness that things continue to exist even when not perceived.

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83

Preoperational Stage

In Piaget’s theory, the stage (2-6/7) during which a child learns to use language but does not yet comprehend the mental operations of concrete logic.

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84

Conservation

The principle (which Piaget believed to be a part of concrete operational reasoing) that properties such as mass, volume, and numbers reaming the same despite change in the forms of objects.

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85

Egocentrism

In Piaget’s theory, the preoperational child’s difficulty taking another’s point of view.

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86

Concrete Operational Stage

Piaget’s theory, the stage of cognitive development (6/7-11) during which children gain the mental operations that enable them to think logically about concrete events.

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87

Social Learning Theory

The theory that we learn social behavior by observing and imitating and by being rewarded or punished.

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88

Cross-Sectional Study

A study in which people of different ages are compared with one another.

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Longitudinal Study

Research in which the same people are restudied and retested over a long period of time.

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Biological Psychology

A branch of psychology concerned with the links between biology and behavior.

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91

Neuron

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

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Axon

The extension of a neuron, ending in branching terminal fibers, through which messages pass to other neurons or to muscles or glands.

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Action Potential

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

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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 of this junction is called the synpatic gap or synaptic cleft.

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Neurotransmitter

Chemical messengers that cross the synaptic gaps between neurons.

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Reuptakes

A neurotransmitter’s reabsorption by the sending neuron.

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97

Parasympathetic Nervous System (PNS)

The division of the autonomic nervouse system that calms the body, conserving its energy.

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98

Pituitary Gland

The endocrine system’s most influencial gland. Under the influence of the hypothalamus, the pituitary gland regulates growth and controls other endocrine glands.

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99

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

A technique that uses magnetic fields and radio waves to produce computer generated images of soft tissue. MRI scans show brain anatomy.

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100

Medulla

The base of the brainstem; controls heartbeat, breathing, and blood pressure.

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