Chapter 2 The Biology of Mind recall Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Chapter 2 The Biology of Mind recall Deck (56):
1

biological perspective

Concerned with the links between biology and behavior. Includes psychologists working in neuroscience, behavior genetics, and evolutionary psychology.

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neuron

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

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dendrites

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

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axon

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

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myelin sheath

a fatty tissue layer segmentally encasing the axons of some neurons; enables vastly greater transmission speed as neural impulses hop from one node to the next.

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action potential

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

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threshold

the level of stimulation required to trigger a neural impulse.

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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 the junction is called the synaptic gap or synaptic cleft.

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acetylcholine

neurotransmitter that enables muscle action, learning, and memory. Malfunction: Alzheimer's disease.

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dopamine

neurotransmitter that influences movement, learning, attention, and emotion. Malfunction: Oversupply linked to schizophrenia. Undersupply linked to tremors and decreased mobility in Parkinson's disease.

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Serotonin

Neurotransmitter that affects mood, hunger, sleep, and arousal. Malfunction: Undersupply linked to depression.

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Norepinephrine

Neurotransmitter that helps control alertness and arousal. Malfunction: Undersupply can depress mood.

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GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid)

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

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Glutamate

A major excitatory neurotransmitter; involved in memory. Malfunction: Oversupply can overstimulate brain, producing migraines or seizures.

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Endorphins

Natural, opiate-like neurotransmitters linked to pain control and to pleasure.

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Agonist

Chemicals that binds to a neurotransmitter's receptor and mimic its effect.

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Antagonist

Chemicals that binds to a neurotransmitter's receptor and block its functioning.

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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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Central nervous system (CNS)

the brain and spinal cord.

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peripheral nervous system (PNS)

The sensory and motor neurons that connect the central nervous system (CNS) to the rest of the body.

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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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Sensory neuron

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

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motor neurons

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

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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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somatic nervous system

the division of the peripheral nervous system that controls the body's skeletal muscles. Also called the skeletal nervous system.

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Autonomic nervous system (ANS)

the part of the peripheral nervous system that controls the glands and the muscles of the internal organs (such as the heart). Its sympathetic division arouses; its parasympathetic division calms.

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Sympathetic nervous system

the division of the autonomic nervous system that arouses the body, mobilizing its energy in stressful situations.

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Parasympathetic nervous system

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

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reflex

a simple, automatic response to a sensory stimulus, such as the knee-jerk response.

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Endocrine system

The body's “slow” chemical communication system; a set of glands that secrete hormones into the bloodstream.

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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 time of stress.

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Pituitary 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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Lesion

Tissue destruction. A brain lesion is a naturally or experimentally caused destruction of brain tissue.

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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 the electrodes placed on the scalp.

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PET (positron emission tomography) scan

a visual display of the brain activity that detects where a radioactive form of glucose goes while brain performs a given task.

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MRI (Magnetic resonance imaging)

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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fMRI (fuctional MRI)

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

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brainstem

the oldest part and central core of the brain, beginning where the spinal cord swells as it enters the skill; the brainstem is responsible for automatic survival functions.

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medulla

the base of the brainstem; controls heartbeat and breathing.

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thalamus

the brain's sensory switchboard, located on top of the brainstem; it directs messages to the sensory receiving areas in the cortex and transmits replies to the cerebellum and medulla.

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reticular formation

a nerve network that travels through the brainstem and plays an important role in controlling arousal/

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cerebellum

the “little brain” at the rear of the brain-stem; functions include processing sensory input and coordinating movement-output and balance.

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limbic system

neural system (including the hippocampus, amygdala, and hypothalamus) located below cerebral hemispheres; associated with emotions and drives.

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amygdala

two lima-bean-sized neural clusters in the limbic system; linked to emotion.

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hypothalamus

a neural structure lying below (hypo) the thalamus; it directs several maintenance activities (eating, drinking, body temperature), helps govern the endocrine system via the pituitary gland, and is linked to emotion and reward.

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glial cells (glia)

cells in the nervous system that support, nourish, and protect neurons; they may also play a role in learning and thinking.

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frontal lobes

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

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parietal lobes

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

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occipital lobes

portion of the cerebral cortex ling at the back of the head; includes areas that receive information from the visual fields.

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temporal lobes

portion of the cerebral cortex lying roughly above the ears; includes the auditory areas, each receiving information primarily from the opposite ear.

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sensory cortex

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

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association areas

areas of the cerebral cortex that are not involved in primary motor or sensory functions; rather, they are involved in higher mental functions such as learning, remembering, thinking, and speaking.

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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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neurogenesis

the formation of new neurons.

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corpus callosum

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

56

split brain

a condition resulting from surgery that isolates the brain's two hemispheres by cutting the fibers (mainly those of the corpus callosum) connecting them.