Flashcards in lecture 10: altered state of consciousness and biological rhythms Deck (27):
What is consciousness?
an awareness of internal and external stimuli
What are daydreams?
shifts in attention towards internal thoughts and imagined scenarios
(uni students may spend as much as 50% of their waking tim ethinking abot something other than what is currently happening)
How can psychologists learn about the normal flow of consciousness?
through eperience-sampling techniques
what was freud's focus on the psychodynamic view of consciousness?
the unconscious and levels of consciousness
What are the three mental systems that form consciousness?
1) conscious: mental events that you are aware of
2) preconscious: mental events that can be brought into awareness
3) unconscious: mental events that are inaccessbile to awareness; events are actively kept out of awareness
How is consciousness distributed throughout the brain?
Hindbrain & midbrain - important for arousal and sleep
damage to reticular formation - can lead to coma
pre frontal cortex - key for conscious control of info processing
what kind of patterns of activity can be seen in an EEG?
normal waking/alert shown by beta waves (13-24cycles/sec)
deep relaxation shown by alpha waves (8-12cycles/sec)
Light sleep shown by theta waves (4-7 cycles/sec)
deep sleep shown by delta waves (<4 cycles/sec)
what is the relationship between consciousness and attention?
divided attention or dissociation argument
what is hypnosis?
a systematic procedure that increases suggestibility
what influences hypnotic susceptibiliy?
what are some effects produced through hypnosis?
sensory distortions and hallucinations
posthypnotic suggestions and amnesia
what is hilgard's theory on hypnosis?
a hidden observer is created in the mind while hypnosis is taking place
i.e. that hypnosis creates a dissociation in consciousness
what is dissociation?
the splitting off of mental processes into two separate, simultaneous streams of awareness
e.g. highway hyponosis
what are some applications for hypnosis?
anaesthesia: use of hyponosis in minor surgery and by dentists for pain management
particuarly useful with burns patients undergoing debridement
during pregnancy and labour
behavourial changes: use of hypnosis to reduce smoking and improve diet
what is meditation
practices that train attention to heighten awareness and bring mental processes under greater voluntary control
what are some physical and biological effects of meditation?
alpha waves and beta waves become more prominent in EEG recordings
Decreased arousal. i.e. a decline in heart rate, skin conductance, respiration rate, oxygen consumption, carbondioxide elimination
what are the benefits of meditation?
Reduced effects of stress (due to lower levels of stress hormones and an enhanced immune response)
Improved mental health due to reduced anxiet and concomittant reduction in drug abouse
May have positive effects on blood pressure, self esteem, mood, and sense of control
what is subliminal perception?
the perception of stimuli below the threshold of consciousness
what has research discovered regarding subliminal perception?
presenting people with subliminal stimuli can influence their emotional reactions and behaviours.
this stimuli can be positive or negative
what are circadian rhythms?
a cyclical biological process that evolved around the daily cylce of light and dark (e.g. sleep)
when do foetuses begin to show rhythms of sleep and activity?
by six months gestational age
what accounts for difficulties people exerience when crossing time zones or working night shifts?
they also impact physical and mental health and your grades!
what is the physiological pathway of sleep/wake cycles?
light levels are detected by the retina, -> suprachiasmitc nucleus of the hypothalamus -> pineal gland -> secretion of melatonin
what occurs in the absence of external cues?
people fall into a 25 hour rhythm
(external cues draw us into a 24 hour rhythm)
Why does jet lag occur?
due to changing time zones too quickly for the circadian rhythms to change
what are the differences in grades of larks and owls?
morning students do better in morning classes
evening students do better in evening classes