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Flashcards in Class 7 Deck (36)
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Broadbent filter model of selective attention

Much information enters our sensory stores

Some of that information makes it through the selective filter into our working memory

Other information is filtered out and decays

This theory is intended to explain why we are not constantly overwhelmed by all of the stimuli in our environments


Treisman attenuation model of selective attention

Some information not attended to can still be detected under the right conditions

Treisman altered broadbents model to account for this fact

Accordingly information not attended to does not decay but rather is turned down to a lower volume. Information from that channel is still process just not as consciously

The cocktail party effect


The cocktail party effect

Occurs when you filter out other conversations until your name or something equally salient is mentioned at which point your attention shifts to this other channel


What does successful multitasking depend on

Task similarity
Task difficulty
Task practice



A mental framework that allows us to organize our experiences/stimuli and respond to new experiences/stimuli


Assimilate schemas

To use our schemas effectively we must constantly assimilate new experiences - new information is interpreted based on our current schemas


Accommodate schemas

As we interact with the world we also accommodate our schemas to incorporate new information and experiences


What are piagets stages of cognitive development

Sensorimotor = 0-2, child experiences the world directly through senses and motor movement

Preoperational = 2-7, child can represent things with words and images but uses intuitive not logical reasoning

Concrete Operational = 7-11, child thinks logically/performs simple mental manipulations with concrete concepts

Formal Operational = 12+, person can reason abstractly, solve hypothetical problems, deduce consequences


What is trial and error

Attempting several potential solutions and ruling out those that do not work


What is insight

Occurs when we puzzle over a problem and then the complete solution appears to come to us all at once


What is heuristic

A mental rule of thumb shortcut or guideline


What is an algorithm

A step by step procedure that exhausts all possible options


Confirmation bias

This occurs when we seek evidence to support our conclusions or ideas more than we seek evidence that will refute them; this also occurs when we interpret neutral or ambiguous evidence as supporting our beliefs



Occurs when we have structured a problem in our mind a certain way even if that way is ineffective and are unable to restructure it, we are then unable to see the problem from a fresh perspective


Functional fixedness

Is a mental bias that limits our view of how an object can be used based on how that object is traditionally used


Mental set

A mental set is our tendency to approach situations in a certain way because that method worked for us in the past


Availability heuristic

Occurs when we rely on examples that immediately come to mind when we are trying to make a decision or judgement. By relying on what is just available in our minds rather than doing actual research we can overestimate the probability and likelihood of something happening


What is intelligence

Can broadly be viewed as the ability to learn from experience and adapt to the environment


What are the theories of intelligence

There is one general intelligence
There are multiple types of intelligences

Social intelligence
- the ability to manage and understand people

Emotional intelligence
- the ability to monitor and discriminate emotions in order to guide thinking and action


What are two types of intelligence

Fluid intelligence
- reason abstractly increased processing speed

Crystallized intelligence
- accumulated knowledge and verbal skills


What are two mindsets regarding intelligence

Fixed = belief that intelligence and abilities are static

Growth = belief that intelligence and abilities can be developed through effort


Representativeness heuristic

Occurs when we estimate the likelihood of an event by comparing it to an existing prototype that already exists in our minds. Our prototype is what we think is the most relevant or typical example of a particular event or object


BFs skinners behaviourist theory of language development

Posits that language develops through the associative learning principles of classical and more importantly operant conditioning


Noam Chomsky’s Nativist Theory of language development

Proposes that infants are born with the innate ability to use language

Human brains have evolved language acquisition device that is innately capable of understanding the universal grammar common to all human languages

All normally developing humans will automatically learn language when exposed to it during a critical period that ends before puberty


Lev Vygotsky’s interactionist theory of language development

Admits some innate ability and biological predispositions but emphasizes social interactions and cognitive development as the most important factors


Broca’s area

Inferior frontal gyrus of dominant hemisphere associated with language production

Damage to Broca’s area can result in non fluent aphasia with intact comprehension


Wernickes area

Posterior superior temporal gyrus associated with understanding written and spoken language

Damage to wenickes area can result in fluent aphasia with impaired comprehension


Linguistic determinism

Language determines thought and emotions/feelings and linguistic categories limit and determine cognitive categories


Sapir Whorf Hypothesis

Also known as the linguistic relativity hypothesis,

This principle holds that the different structures and vocabulary of different languages strongly affect the thinking of those who use these languages.

Experimental evidence suggests that linguistic differences in categorization can influence the categorical perception of the speakers of those languages



Aka proprioception allows us to sense the position of our limbs in space as well as detect bodily movements