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Cognition includes various mental processes that we use to interpret the world and to engage with others
The objective, scientific study of mental processes, including learning memory, reasoning, decision-making, attention, perception, and language
Plato, Socrates, Descartes
Nature, The contents of the mind are inborn; knowledge is inborn
Nurture, People have to learn about the world
To look within yourself; self-reflection, became the source of argumentation and contention
What Powerful school ruled the 20th century, used introspection and forbade study of mind/thinking?
Behaviorists who equated human thinking to studying animal behavior
John Watson, B.F. Skinner
Who caused the end of Behaviorism in psychology and believed language is inborn?
Elementary medical techniques (EEG) and case studies of patients with brain damage led to a notion of “localization of function”
Localization of function
Different places in the brain have different jobs
The combination of physiological studies of localizations of function of operations in a living human
Skills or ability
Medical technology (Neuro-imaging)
allows for the extensive study of cognitive functions in a living human
Theory is related to understanding or explaining things
Applied refers to using out knowledge in the real world
What is the reason for research?
To understand why things are the way they are
Anything that can have different values, that varies, is a variable
Some variables that can be manipulated
Type of stimuli shown, Complexity of stimuli
Variables that can be collected as data
Decision, Reaction time, Recall, Patterns of activation on neuro-imaging, looking time
Documents or records things as they are (no stimulating/manipulating)
Advantage of descriptive research
Report things as they exist: authentic, natural, trustworthy
Disadvantage of descriptive research
Never answers the cause or reason why something occurs
Observing behavior in the environment in which they occur, Jane Goodall’s Chimps
Writing down a detailed story about an individual because it is a unique case
Broad collection of studies (Ex Post Facto/Quasi-experimental), correlation coefficcient -1 to +1
Ex Post Facto
Collect research after the fact
Not experimental but looks like it
Caveat about correlation
Correlation is causation - INCORRECT STATEMENT
Ethical Constraints of Correlational Research
Not going to force person to do action, but find the data to figure out if there is a correlation, while aware of the limits
Practical Constraints of Correlational Research
Can not force a person into said situation, but can find the relation through data
Variables are deliberately manipulated to see what happens
Independent variable (IV)
Thing that is changed
Dependent variable (DV)
Data that get collected, results of the study
Advantages of experimental research
If done correctly can find out what causes what
Disadvantage to experimental research
Inauthentic, odd, strange, subject will behave different than. how they naturally would
not IV or DV, can confuse the interpretation of a study and influence the DV, needs to be controlled, e.g. age, gender, environment, species
Participant Bias (expectancy effects)
Participants have beliefs that can affect their reactions or performance
Only the participants are unaware of some important information that might influence the results of the study, researchers may lie about study for this reason
Researchers are committed to getting a certain pattern of data, which can inappropriately impact the results
The participants and the researchers (who directly deal with the participants) are unaware of important information
Parts of the limbic system
Hippocampus and amygdala
What is the most recent part of our brain to evolve?
Sulci and fissures (wrinkles and deep grooves) in the brain
allows for more tissue for function
Involved in memory, awareness, attention, language, reasoning, intelligence, perception, and movement
adjective for cortex
Somatosensory and motor cortex
In humans, much of the area is devoted to the head, face, mouth, and hands. Less is devoted to larger body parts. the ratio is varied in humans
Gives you feeling if you are being touched and where
Gives you the ability to move your body
Functions are abilities (movement, language, vision, memory, etc) found in predictable and permanent areas of the brain
Are there anatomical modules or centers?
No coginitive functions can be found in multiple areas of the brain, flexibly depending on the task. Areas overlap
flexibly allow the cortex to interpret, coordinate, and link info and functions from multiple areas, activity can change from moment to moment
Tissue in association areas, Humans vs. Other species
Humans have a higher percentage devoted to association areas, others species lower on the phylogenetic scale have less
What does neuroimaging research show of accomplished people in the arts and sciences?
They have increased activity in association cortices (plural of cortex), compared to people in non-creative areas
Techniques to study human brain
Clinical/Medical case studies, Recording, Neuroimaging
Shows the structure of the brain
What are the white areas in CT Scans?
brain tissue; functional tissue
What are the black areas in CT Scans?
Missing brain tissue; fluid
shows activity in the brain
What are the red/orange areas in PET scans?
What are the blue areas in PET scans?
no activity/less activity
shows the structure of the brain
fMRI (functional magnetic resonance imaging)
structure and activity, anatomical detail and specific are where activity takes place
Lateralization of function
Lateral means side, so the sides of the brain and their respective functions
Analytic thought; logic, math, language(Broca, Wernicke), Right (opposite) side motor skills, Right (opposite) side ear audition
Emotional thought, Intuitions, Creativity, music, art, Left (opposite) side motor skills, Left (opposite) side ear audition
What is the purpose of the corpus Callosum?
This is the tissue that allows both sides to communicate; information is shared across hemispheres
Lateralization of function map
Only true for right-handed, almost all right handed people are left dominant for language, left handed people are not predictable, they are not on the opposite side to righties
What is true about being left handed?
Left handedness is associated with a high risk of a learning disability
Refers to the hemisphere that is stronger for a function. The left hemisphere is “dominant for language” and the right side is dominant for music and art but has some linguistic skills
What is a misconception of dominance?
People are not left brained or right brained, they use both
How many lobes are in the hemispheres?
Each hemisphere has four distinct lobes
What is and where is excutive function?
Located in the frontal lobes, it is involved in planning, organizing, decision-making, regulates impulses, emotion, consideration of consequences
What disorders have executive dysfunctions?
ADHD, ASD, traumatic brain injury, dementia (trouble with the lobe)
What is the main cause of chronic traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE)
Prevalent in football who constantly hitting their head for a long period of time
Where is language?
Broca’s area, Wernicke’s area, Language Association area
Why can people hear better through there right ear?
The right ear is directly connected to the left hemisphere where the language function is found
Where is memory located?
Several places in the cortex, lower down or “older” parts of the brain
What are the two parts of the limbic system?
What does the limbic system do?
Humans use the limbic system for learning and memory
What is bigger in people who rely on memory?
What happens in the hippocampus?
Short term memory transform into long term memory
What mental disability effects the performance of the hippocampus?
PTSD, post traumatic stress disorder, can affect the memory span
What is the function of the amygdala
vigilance, respond (to others or situations) with empathy or aggression, used for some classical conditioning