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Flashcards in Arousal+Attention Deck (22):

awake, oriented to personal, place, and time

normal arousal


responsive and conversant, but easily distracted; disconnected thoughts, purposeless behavior



disoriented, hyperactive, autonomic hyperactivity, hallucination/delusions

acute/rapid onset and considered temporary (gone after underlying condition treated)



arousable only to vigorous stimulation; responses when aroused are minimal and slow



unresponsive to external stimuli; basic functions may be absent



common causes of arousal deficits

1. acute neurologic insult
2. metabolic dysfunctions (hypoxia: heart attack)(hypo/hyperglycemia: diabetes)(hypo/hyperthyroidism: thyroid disease)(hyperammonemia: liver failure)(uremia: kidney failure)(acute intoxication: sedatives, heavy metals)


the mental process of concentrating effort on a stimulus of mental event



sensory, stimulus-driven, implicit, exogenous, automatic

without conscious awareness (involuntary)

bottom-up attentional focus


executive, goal-driven, explicit, endogenous, controlled

more conscious effort and control

top-down attentional focus


spatial: certain aspects of visual processing are automatic; analysis requires a specific physical feature to locate target

response time unaffected by # of stimuli present

bottom-up, fast, one dimension, pop-out

feature search


looking for two features (series process)
mental spotlight scans from one location to next to locate particular information
more difficult; depends on time or place

response time increases in relation to # of stimuli present

top-down, slow, multiple dimensions, serial

conjunction search


feature integration theory

stimulus pattern or visual scene we see registered in area V1

broken down into feature maps (color, orientation, motion)

information serially processed in parallel pathways

attends to specific location within master map (attentional spotlight)

features within the spotlight are combined to form an object (perception + recognition)


automatic vs. controlled attentional processes

central executive: command center that controls and regulates cognitive processes and intervenes before they go astray (selective attention, response inhibition, change between tasks)

phonological loop: verbal/acoustic information and temporary store + articulatory rehearsal system

visuo-spatial sketchpad: visual information

episodic buffer: limited capacity temporary storage that is capable of integrating information across domains of verbal & visual


dual-task paradigm experiments evidence for slave systems

individuals performing two tasks that require two DIFFERENT domains perform the SAME as if they were doing them singularly

individuals performing two tasks that require the SAME domain perform LESS EFFICIENTLY than if they were perform in the tasks singularly


attentional network

one of the first models to introduce that spatial attention is a distributed function mediated by network of cortical functions

reticular structures: important for arousal
cingulate cortex: important for regulation of behavior within attention and motivation/emotional significance to extrapersonal elements
thalamus: receives activation from subcortical structures and relays information to cortex in bi-directional manner
posterior parietal cortex: generates internal sensory representation of extrapersonal environment
frontal cortex: modulates and coordinates motor programs for responding to stimuli


selective attention (process, behavior, test)

process: capacity to capture one source, ignore or filter distractions

behavior: conversing at loud party, finding friend in crowd

test: trail making A+B, cancellation, stroop


divided attention (process, behavior, test)

process: capacity to attend to multiple tasks/stimuli simultaneously

behavior: driving and texting, typing and listening to phone message

test: digit span, letter-number sequencing, dichotic listening


sustained attention (process, behavior, test)

process: maintain attention over time (vigilance)

behavior: highway driving, radar monitoring

test: continuous performance task


attention deficits are typicall associated with ___________ or ________

frontal lobe, diffuse dysfunction


visual neglect

ego-centric, follows you despite previous understanding


Balint's syndrome

optic ataxia (deficit in visually guided reaching)
gaze apraxia (deficit in shifting attention intentionally)
impaired distance estimation
narrowed attentional field (simultanagnosia)
absence of other deficits
associated with bilateral parietal lesions (more severe when frontal lobes involved)



attention to spatial field is normal
attention to object field is impaired

given object that are one color - can tell
given objects that are of two colors - cannot tell
connect different colored objects with line - can tell