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o observable actions of human beings and non animals
o Attempt to use scientific methods to address fundamental questions about mind and behavior
o Advocates that psychologists should restrict themselves to scientific study of objectively observable behavior, product of your environment
3 main ideas: emphasis on learning (some things are hard wired, most things have to be learned); antimentalism (unscientific = desires, wishes goals emotions etc), no differences across species
3 models: habituation, classical conditioning, instrumental conditioning/shaping
● insistence on measuring only observable, quantifiable behavior with its dismissal of mental activity as irrelevant and unknowable.
● Classical conditioning demonstrates that durable, substantial changes in behavior can be achieved simply by setting up proper conditions.
o Influenced by these introspective methods
o Consciousness was like flowing stream rather than separate elements
o Functionalism- study of purpose mental processes serve in enabling people to adapt their environment
o Inspired by darwins natural selection
§ Mental abilities must have evolved too to make us survive
§ Consciousness must serve important biological function
o Wundt and other structuralists worked in labs and james felt that work was limited
§ Mind influences body thru pineal gland
o thought that brains and minds were linked but by size rather than by glands
§ Phrenology- specific mental abilities and characteristics ranging from memory to capacity for happiness are localized in specific regions of the brain
· Turned out to be part right- extreme though- said that size of bumps or indentations in skull reflected size of brain regions beneath them
· Pierre flourens
o Removed specific parts and actions differed
o Worked with damaged left part of brain patient
o Unable to speak and could utter only single syllable
o But understood everything
o Study of biological processes especially in the human body
o speedo f responses
§ Speed of nerve impulses in frogs leg
§ Stimulus- sensory input from evniromnent
§ Reaction time- taken to respond to stimulus
§ Believed scientific psychology should focus on analyzing consciousness a persons subjective experience of the world and the mind
§ Structuralism- analysis of basic element that constitute mind
§ Breaking consciousnesd down into elemental sensations and feelings
§ Introspection- subjective observation of ones own experience
§ Elementary perceptions
§ Provide objective measurements of conscious processes by using reaction time techniques similar to those developed by Helmholtz
o Focused on developmemt and eductation and was strongly influenced by evolutionary thinking
o As children develop they pass thru stages that repeat the evolutionary history of the human race
§ - temporary loss of cognitive or motor functions usually as a result of emoitionally upsetting experiences
§ Pateints blind and couldn’t think but no physical cause of problemts
§ But when put into hypnosis symptons disappeared
o private experience too vague for scientific inquiry
§ Proposedo nly focus on behavior
§ Behavior observable and objective
§ Influenced by work of Ivan Pavlov- physiology of digestion
· Response- action or physiological change elicited by stimulus
o Conditioning chamber- skinner box
§ Lever and a food tray
· Rate of bar pressing to open for food increased until rat not hungry
§ Reinforcement- consequences of behavior determine whether it will be more or less likely to occur again
· 4th graders trained to want to do more work by reward each step of task
o Argued that skinners insistence on obersable behavior caused him to miss some of most important features of language
o Language relies on mental rules that allow people to understand and produce novel words and sentences
o Ability of child to say sentences they never heard before debunked a lot of behavior stuff
○ Composed of 3 parts: a cell body (coordinates the information-processing tasks and keeps the cell alive), dendrites (receive information from other neurons and relay it to the cell body), and the axon (transmits information to other neurons, muscles, or glands.
● parts of the cell membranes that receive neurotransmitters and either initiate or prevent a new electric signal.
● - the part of the nervous system that connects the central nervous system to the body’s organs and muscles.
● an area of the brain that coordinates information coming into and out of the spinal cord.
● relatively small and composed of the tectum (orients an organism in its environment) and the tegmentum (involved in movement and arousal).
● - a commissure (bundles of axons that make communication between hemispheres possible) which connects large areas of the cerebral cortex on each side of the brain and supports communication of information across the hemispheres.
○ Sensory neurons receive information from the external world and convey this information to the brain via the spinal cord.
○ Motor neurons carry signals from the spinal cord to the muscles to produce movement.Interneurons connect sensory neurons, motor neurons, or other interneurons
○ are simple pathway that rapidly generate muscle contractions.
● a group of forebrain structures that are involved in motivation, emotion, learning and memory.
● 3 Methods for understanding how the brain affects behavior -
○ Testing people with brain damage and observing their deficits.
○ Studying electrical activity in the brain during behavior.
○ Conducting brain scans while people perform various tasks.
· instinctual drives present at birth
o Does not distinguish bw reality and fantasy
o Operates according to the pleasure principle
o It is stupid
· develops out of the id in infancy
o Understands reality and logic
o Mediator between id and superego
o Internalization of society’s moral standards
o Responsible for guilt
o The conscience
o Not sophisticated
· Id is in your unconscious mind- may be telling u to bang ur sister but you don’t know
· birth- 1 year
o Mouth associated with sxual pleasure
o Weaning a child can lead to fixation if not handled correctly
o Fixation can lead to oral activities in adulthood
o Could be needy, smoke cigs
· 1-3 years
o Anus is associated with pleasure
o Toilet training can lead to fixation if not handled correctly
o Fixation can lead to anal retentive or expulsive behaviors in adulthood
o Because you didn’t want to part with own feces
· 3-5 years
o Focus of pleasure shifts to genitals
o Oedipus or electra complex can occur
o Fixation can lead to excessive masculinity in males and the need for attention or domination in females
o Oedipus complex
§ Every boy with both mom and dad
§ Mom is nice
§ I love mom
§ But dad is in the way
§ Kill dad
§ Uh oh. Dad is mad
§ Whats worst he could do? – castrate me—I give up. Dad wins
§ Lets not think about sex for a while
· 5- puberty
o Sexuality is repressed
o Children participate in hobbies, school and same-sex freindships
· puberty on
o Sexual feelings re emerge and are oriented toward others
o Healthy adults find pleasure in love and work, fixated adults have their energy tied up in earlier stages
· Unconscious mental processes employed by the ego to reduce anxiety- id is sending up weird sick stuff – so u repress it
o Some comes out with jokes and slips of tongue
defense mechanism that involves supplying a reasonable-sounding explanation for unacceptable feelings and behavior to conceal (mostly from oneself) one’s underlying motives or feelings
· lindness and deafness, paralysis, trembling, panic attacks, gaps of memory
· These symptoms are a way of keeping emotionally charged memories under lock and key
· When memories are recovered- there is catharsis – an explosive release
· Freud oringally tried to get at these memories thru hypnosis, but later moved to free association
· Patients offer resistance
· Freud used the methods of psychoanalysis to explore these conflicts
· Needs to be shown by something in the real world- falsifiable
· IF U CANT PROVE WRONG- then it cant be science
● is based on cognitive mechanisms such as attention, perception, memory, or reasoning. It has survival value.
● Observational learning has important social and cultural consequences.
● process that detects, learns, and stores patterns without the application of explicit awareness on the part of the learner.
● Simple behaviors such as habituation can reflect implicit learning, but complex behaviors, such as language, can also be learned through an implicit process.
● The cerebellum is critical for both delay and trace conditioning.
● The hippocampus is important for trace conditioning but not delay conditioning.
● The amygdala is involved in fear conditioning and other experiences of emotion.
● Mechanism for choosing food:
○ There should be rapid learning.
○ Conditioning should be able to take place over very long intervals.
○ The organism should develop an aversion to the smell or taste of the food rather than its ingestion.
○ Learned aversions should occur more often with novel foods than with familiar ones.
● (a rewarding stimulus is removed)
● Reinforcement is generally more effective than punishment in promoting learning.
○ Punishment signals that an unacceptable behavior has occurred, but it doesn’t specify what should be done instead.
● The neurons in the medial forebrain bundle, a pathway that meanders its way from the midbrain through the hypothalamus into the nucleus accumbens, are the most susceptible to stimulation that produces pleasure.
● - when infants apply their schemas in novel situations.
· Preoperational stage 2- 7
o Emergence of symbolic though
o Egocentrism – see world one way and cant see how someone would see it differently
● the idea that human behavior is guided by mental representations.
○ Children’s language skills are an excellent predictor of how well they perform on false belief tests.
● a behavioral test used to determine a child’s attachment style.
○ secure attachment style - infants are calmed by proximity of caregiver.
○ avoidant attachment style - fail to acknowledge caregiver.
○ Ambivalent attachment style - always distressed and are not calmed by caregiver.
○ disorganized attachment style - no consistent pattern of responses to when caregiver leaves or returns.
● Why are human beings born with such underdeveloped brains when other primates are not?
○ The human brain has nearly tripled in just 2 million years of evolution - a newborn’s head needs to be smaller than its adult size or it couldn’t pass through its mother’s birth canal.
○ One of our species’ greatest talents is its ability to adapt to a wide range of novel environments.
■ Human beings arrive with brains that do much of their developing within the very environments in which they will function.
● Prenatal environment -
○ The fetus can hear its mother’s heartbeat, the gastrointestinal sounds associated with her digestion, and her voice.
● Jean PIaget - Can infants think?
○ Through experiment, Jean PIaget concluded that children move through discrete stages of cognitive development.
■ Children need to understand how the physical world works, how their minds represent it, and how other minds represent it.
○ Centration - the tendency to focus on just one property of an object to the exclusion of all others.
○ Failure of reversibility - children don’t consider that an operation can be reversed.
○ Modern psychologists see development as a more continuous and less step-like progression than Piaget believed.
○ Also, children acquire many of the abilities that Piaget described much earlier than he realized.
● PIaget saw the child as a lone scientist who made observations, developed theories, and then revised those theories in light of new observations.
○ However, a large part of cognitive development is the result of the child’s interaction with members of his or her own culture.
○ The ability to focus on what another person is focused on is joint attention.
○ The ability to use another person’s reaction as information about the world is known as social referencing.
○ The ability to do what another person does is known as imitation.
● Piaget noticed that moral thinking changed systematically over time in three important ways for children:
○ First, moral thinking tends to shift from realism to relativism. A shift in thinking about moral rules as real, inviolable truths vs. realizing that some moral rules are inventions and that groups of people can agree to adopt them, change them, or abandon them entirely.
○ Prescriptions to principles - children think of moral rules as guidelines for specific actions in specific situations. Children come to see that rules are expressions of more general principles.
○ Outcomes to intentions - children learn that the morality of an action is critically dependent on the actor’s state of mind.
○ younger adults are generally oriented toward the acquisition of information that they can use in the future, whereas older adults are generally oriented toward information that brings emotional satisfaction in the present.
○ Researchers consider marriage to be one of the best investments individuals can make in their own happiness.`
o start out as immoral/amoral creatures
§ baby starts out with an id- no care for others
o empiricism vs nativism vs constructivism
§ empiricism- start out with nothing and then you learn
§ nativism – born knowing things. Plato decartes and Chomskyconstructivism – development involves restructuring of the mind
· Piagets theory of cog dev
o Children are active thinkers constantly trying to construct more advanced understandings of the world
· Sensorimotor stage- birth- 2
o Information is gained thru senses and motor actions
o In this stage child perceives and manipulates but does not reason
o No sense of time past future
o No differentiated self or other
o Purely acting
o Object permanence acquired
§ Understanding that objects exist independent f ones actions or perceptions of them
§ Before 6 months infants act as if objects removed from sight cease to exist
§ So little understanding of world that they don’t know permance
§ Can be surprised by disappearance/ reappearance of a face ( peek-a boo)
§ Then failure at A not B task
· After kids get some glimmer of object permanence
· Cover up a toy and put it one spot and then move it to another and they dk wtf happened
o understanding of mental operations leading to increasingly logical thought
o less egocentric
o but inability to reason abstraciticty
● - the smallest meaningful units of language (words)
● the proposal that language shapes the nature of thought.
● a neurological syndrome that is characterized by an inability to recognize objects that belong to a particular category though the ability to recognize objects outside the category is undisturbed.
● Broca’s area located in the left frontal cortex is involved in the production of the sequential patterns in vocal and sign languages.
○ When Broca’s area is damaged, patients have difficulty producing sentences.
○ When Wernicke’s area is damaged, patients tend to produce complete, but meaningless sentences.
o Man has instinctive urge to to speak, but not to cook bake – Darwin
Pidgin - creole (Creolization)
§ When bring together slaves of different backgrounds with no common language, they make a makeshift communication system- that is called a pidgin- has some words but not grammar or structure
· Children raised in that society don’t speak pidgin, and then they transform it into a real language- creole (creolization)
o Creative: we can say whatever we choose- language is in someway free
§ Some people view language as epitome of free speech
§ We can create and understand sentences we never heard before
§ Infinite grammatical sentences in under 20 words
§ How we do it?
· Abstract and unconscious shit
o combine to make sentences
§ Another neat trick: inifinite use of finite media- combinatorial system
§ Not exlusive to language: music, dna
§ The infinity mechanism: recursion- rules that generate new rules
o combining words to make words
§ Ferdinand de Saussure: the arbitrariness of the sign
· Nature of the sound has nothing to do with the meaning of it- chair doesn’t sound like meaning of chair yo
§ Morpehemes: smallest meaningful unit
· Single morpheme: dog, complain
o Need to know what they mean
· Many morphemes: dogs, complained
o So u hear dis and u know its many dogs
· Avg English speaker knows 80K morphemes
§ How they sound. Sound system
§ Basic sounds and signs
§ Languages choose different subsets
· English has about 40- buNo real boundaries between words; children have to learn segment speech as part of language learning
· Language development- timetable
o Birth- 4 months
§ Preference for melody of own language
§ Sensitive to all phonemes-
§ If born in france, and hear all the French shit u like that better
§ Baby can hear it all
o About 7 months
§ Deaf kids learn sign language with hands babbling
o 12 months
§ learn words
o 18 months
§ leanring words faster
§ 2 word sentences
§ function morphemes appear gradually like in a the
o past puberty
§ outside critical period- learning more difficult languages shuts down kinda
Wilhelm Von Humboldt:
● the process of actively relating new information to knowledge that is already in memory.
○ Increased activity in the lower left part of the frontal lobe and the inner part of the left temporal lobe.
● the process of storing new information by converting it into mental pictures.
○ Increased activity in visual processing regions in the occipital lobe.
● a fast-decaying store of visual information.
● external information that helps bring stored information to mind.
● the tendency for information to be better recalled when the person is in the same state during encoding and retrieval.
● the act of consciously or intentionally retrieving past experience.
● an enhanced ability to think of a stimulus such as a word or object, as a result of a recent exposure to the stimulus.
○ Priming, like procedural memory, does not require the hippocampal structures that are damaged in case of amnesia.
○ Perceptual priming (regions toward the back of the brain, such as the visual cortex) reflects implicit memory for the sensory features of an item, and conceptual priming (regions toward the front of the brain, such as the frontal lobes) reflects implicit memory for the meaning of a word or how you would use an object.
● the appearance of the words.
· Things you care about they go into long term memory
- virtually unlimited storage, not infinite but it holds a lot
· How to retrieve information from LTM
o Use of retrieval cues
§ If you take a test in the same place that you learned the information, you’ll do better on the test
§ If you study when you’re stoned, you’ll remember it better when you are stoned
ú 2 kinds: amnesia of the past (standard in pop culture, something happens to you and you can’t remember, wipe out whole chunk of memory, autobiographical amnesia (no idea who you are, how to speak your language, etc)), and inability to learn new memories (think 50 First Dates)
· Stephen Ceci study: man walked into classroom, said hi im sam stone, and kids came up with tons of stories about what happened, because they were questioned before and implanted false memories that resulted in them making up crazy stories about what happened
§ Robert trivers- any investment by parent in individual offspring that increases offsprings chance of surving at cost of parents ability to invest in other offspring
§ Females have much higher parental investment
· Carry fetus inside, nourishes with blood, nurses and protects
§ Male- just need that one thing of sperm moment of copulation
· Single man can fertilize several females which forces some males to go mateless
· Those who mate with as many females as possible will have the most reproductive success and the genes that allow them to do so will be passed on to future generations
· Women will be more picky cuz they have longer reproductive cycles
o In many species there is male high parental investment because it is in the males reporoductive advantage to care for offspring
· Mate preference
· More focus on power and status
· Interest in investment
· Ability to have children
· Universals of beauty
o Beauty= youth
§ Full lips
§ Smooth tight skin
o Beuty= health
§ Absence of deformities
§ Clear eyes
§ Unblemished skin
§ Intact teeth
§ Average face – easier on eyes
Detects oxygenation level of local cerebral blood flow-hemoglobin
- Imaging is based on magnetic properties of hemoglobin which carries oxygen
- Deoxygenated hemoglobin is more paramagnetic than oxygenated hemoglobin
- Based on simple physiological fact that more active brain regions need more oxygen and brain will send oxygenated blood to brain regions
- Active brain regions have a higher ratio of oxygenated to deoxygenated hemoglobin
Human babies know about number and can perform simple operations, detect properties of objects and use tools
Children develop theory of mind, sense of empathy and morality
Babies imitate adults’ facial expressions even in first few minutes of life
Player A has $10 and offers Player B some amount of money, if Player B accepts then both players get money, if Player B rejects the offer then neither gets money
Societies where you can’t rely on the law, resources are easily taken, a reputation for excessive violent retaliation is essential to keep your resources (EX: American South, Scottish and Irish herdsmen); leads to different gun laws, views on corporal and capital punishment, attitudes towards the military, more forgiveness towards crimes of honor
***Cultures of honor not necessarily more violent, can be more civil because people are more afraid of retribution
Spearman’s theory suggesting that every task requires a combination of a general ability (g) and skills that are specific to the task (s)
co-occurrence of two or more disorders in a single individual