Flashcards in Readings Deck (152):
the study of thinking, of mind; studies perception, attention, memory, concept formation, problem solving, etc.
we possess innate ideas, organizing tendencies, or innate cognitive mechanisms, which determine the nature of human knowledge
the “blank slate” position”, John Locke, we are born with the mechanism for forming associations, but that the initial source of knowledge about the organization of the external world is through sensory information
all we can know is consciousness
association of ideas/associationism
reason and knowledge are derived from experience
perceptual abstractions of sensory experience
neural networks underlie learning and memory
the view that mental experience is the result of a combination of simple, non-meaningful elements or events, Wundt
Fechner, establish the functional relationship between the sensory stimulus and the mind
two factor theory of intelligence
general intelligence→ influenced performance on all tasks
specific intelligence→ suggests relatively independent skills in areas such as verbal, visual, etc.
looking at the "whole"
unconscious mental processes and active mental preparation that influences how the measures experiences, how the mind is constructed whole from parts
constructivist alternative to associationist psychology
a number of schools of thought regarding the nature of mind brought together; types:
holistic: internal representations, top down
active adaptation in response to an experience
understanding mind and behavior as a function of its purpose and adaptive function, rather than on its internal structure or context (William James)
Turing defined a digital computer as having:
A Store of infomation for calculations and rules the computer must follow.
An Executive unit which carries out the individual operations.
A Control which ensures that instructions are performed in accordance with the rules and in the correct order.
the study of nervous system anatomy and physiology, both its structure and function.
integration of biology with cognition.
The goal of this discipline is to explicate the structures and physiological processes that underlie specific cognitive functions.
deliberate destruction of brain tissue or brain areas in animals and the examination of the resulting behavioral deficits.
a very fine microelectrode is inserted into either a single neuron or the extracellular fluid adjacent to it. Changes in that cell’s electrical conductivity or its rate of firing can then be measured.
a larger electrode is used to measure the collective electrical activity of a group of neurons.
electroencephalogram (EEG) is
a recording of the brain’s gross electrical action.
Computerized Axial Tomography
With this technique, an X-ray source rotates around the brain. Low-level X-ray beams pass through the brain and are picked up by a detector positioned on the opposite side. The information from all of the individual X-ray scans is collected and processed by a computer, and two- and three dimensional views of the underlying tissues are then constructed.
Positron Emission Tomography
PET scans measure blood flow in the brain while a participant is carrying out a cognitive task. This is accomplished through the use of radioactive isotopes (tracers) attached to carrier molecules, such as glucose or oxygen molecules.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging
In most MRI evaluations, a patient is placed inside a tube that contains a powerful magnet. Protons, which are subatomic particles present everywhere in the body, align themselves in the magnetic field in the same way iron filings organize themselves around a small magnet. A radio-wave pulse is then applied to the brain or other part of the body undergoing the scan. The radio signals are bounced back and picked up by a detector unit. The reflected signals exhibit different characteristics that are determined by the nature of the atoms that have been penetrated by the signals and their surrounding chemical environment and are converted to images. The cross-sectional images show the structure of internal soft tissue.
functional magnetic resonance imaging
used to reveal changes in brain activity over time. Like PET scans, fMRI scans detect alterations in local blood flow and oxygen level. Brain areas that show increases in these measures are those that have been activated during specific cognitive operations. fMRI scans provide better spatial resolution than CAT scans without any of the risks associated with the injection of radioactive isotopes.
Neurons are .
the microscopic basis of the brain. They are the individual functional units that perform computations
Messages are received by the feathery projections that are known as
dendrites. Dendrites form an extensive branching “tree,” which connects the neuron to many other neurons.
A process whereby the neuron sums up all the inputs it receives from other neurons determines whether or not it will fire.
threshold of excitation
If the “decision” to fire is made, an electrical signal called an ______ _________ is initiated.
a long tubular structure that projects outward from the cell body.
The axon, which can extend for some distance, ends in a terminal button
How is a message passed from one cell to the next?
regions toward the middle of the brain
regions toward the outside of the brain
"cuts" vertically through the brain
cuts horizontally, dividing the brain into dorsal and ventral portions
The _______ plane cuts vertically, but divides the brain into anterior and posterior section
the part of the brain to have been selected for by evolutionary forces most recently and is responsible for a number of higher-order cognitive activities.
The cortex is naturally divided into two halves or
The left hemisphere is the seat of more analytic, serial, and logical reasoning.
Language function in most persons is localized to the left hemisphere
The right hemisphere is the seat of more synthetic, parallel, and relational thought processes.
spatial ability is usually concentrated in the right hemisphere
Information is transferred back and forth between the hemispheres via connecting fibers that are known, collectively, as the ______ ________
A _______ is a large cleft or separation between two areas of brain tissue, whereas a sulcus refers to a smaller such separation.
typically separates neighboring ridges or folds of tissue.
A single ridge of a sulcus
The _______ lobe is located anteriorly and is bounded by the central sulcus and the lateral fissure.
It contributes to problem solving and language production.
The ________ lobe mediates auditory processing, pattern recognition, and language comprehension.
It governs aspects of attention and spatial processing.
Just posterior to the central sulcus is the parietal lobe
The parietal lobe also plays a role in somatosensory processing and in awareness of one’s own body.
where visual information begins to undergo more extensive processing.
primary motor cortex
a spatial representation or map of the body’s parts. Electrical stimulation of the primary motor cortex at a specific point provokes muscular contraction at the site of the corresponding body part. The function of the primary motor cortex is to initiate behavior via the activation of different muscle groups.
primary somatosensory cortex
It is also, in effect, a topological body map.
Electrical stimulation of any portion of the primary somatosensory cortex triggers the perception of a sensation coming from the corresponding part of the body.
The primary somatosensory cortex processes sensory information arriving from the body surface.
information received from the right or left halves of the body is mapped onto the
opposite, or contralateral, side of the brain.
dorsal visual pathway
travels upward to the parietal lobe where information about motion and location is extracted.
It is sometimes called the “where” pathway because of its representation of the spatial positions of objects.
A second stream, the _______ visual pathway, carries data about color and form and travels downward to the temporal lobe. It is referred to as the “____" pathway.
an inability to recognize a visual object
Persons with ____________ agnosia cannot assemble the parts or features of an object into a meaningful whole.
Persons with associative agnosia perceive this whole, but have difficulty in assigning a name or label to it.
perceptual categorization deficit
difficulty in recognizing objects when they are viewed from unusual angles or are lit unevenly
inability to recognize faces
a single cell fires only in response to the presence of a particular face, say, your grandmother’s, but not in response to any other face.
In ___________ coding, a specific face is coded for by a specific pattern of activation among a group of cells.
In human beings “face cells” seem to be located in the
fusiform face area (FFA).
reticular activating system (RAS)
The function of this system is very basic: it controls the brain’s overall arousal and alertness levels. Activation of the RAS is linked to the ability to sustain attention over time.
Its function seems to be the shifting of one’s visual attention from one object or spot in one’s visual field to another.
It receives inputs from the RAS and forwards them to the cortex. It thus is a part of the general RAS arousal circuit.
The thalamus also serves as a relay center; it forwards incoming messages that correspond to the different sensory modalities to parts of the cortex specialized for processing them. It is believed that a particular nucleus within the thalamus is responsible for regulating those sensory messages.
It serves as a filter or gatekeeper, as it determines how much of this information is allowed to continue to the cortex for further processing.
In human beings the intraparietal sulcus is active in processing situations that entail the conflation of visual stimulus features such as color and shape, which suggests that it is responsible for the binding together of features in visual search
The cingulate cortex is believed to be the site where a response is selected, especially in instances in which that response entails the inhibition of or the ignoring of an alternative response.
Opponent Process model
propose that each of the multiple brain areas responsible for the control of attention performs a distinct operation.
Their model specifically describes the changes that occur in visual selective attention, where attention is shifted from one spatial location to another.
Distributed Network Models
In this model, the separate neural structures are not specialized and functionally independent, as they are in the component process model.
Instead, the functions of the different areas overlap to some degree. Each brain region performs a major operation that is attention-related but can perform other attention-related functions as well. This redundancy in the network implies that any given area can suffer damage while the system as a whole will maintain some of the functionality subsumed by the damaged region
A physical change in a part of the brain that is associated with learning
That memories are not laid down in any one area of the brain, but that all parts of the brain participate in memory storage
These areas include the hippocampus, the entorhinal cortex, the amygdala, the striatum, the left parietal cortex, and the prefrontal regions
________ has taken place when an event has provoked a nervous system alteration that in turn provokes a change in the organism’s behavior.
Learning requires ________ __________, which refers to a capacity for change in the structure or biochemistry of a synapse.
If two connected neurons are active simultaneously, the synapse between them will become strengthened.
a disorder in which neurons fire uncontrollably, producing muscle spasms and seizures.
the process by which information is transferred from working or short-term memory to long-term memory - can be affected by epilepsy
Hippocampal damage is associated with ___________ amnesia, an inability to retain new information following some traumatic incident.
an inability to remember information acquired prior to the traumatic event.
Retrograde amnesia is often caused by head injury and in most cases the loss extends only as far back as a week or so before the injury.
a diminished capacity to perform goal-directed behaviors
difficulties in initiating actions or in terminating them once they have been initiated.
environmental dependency syndrome
These patients sometimes appear to be impelled to perform actions that are “suggested by” the environment, such as picking up a pencil and writing with it as soon as they see it.
a stimulus in the environment triggers an automatic behavior
Automatic attentional processes
do not require conscious control.
structures that control automatic attentional processes
An action schema can be thought of as an if-then production rule, where perceptual inputs serve as the preconditions necessary to trigger a context-specific action.
is used to govern routine, habitual performances as well as the performance of nonroutine, novel tasks.
Supervisory Attentional System
is used only for non-routine actions.
one can think of the SAS as a higher-level monitoring system, one that can apply general strategies to bear on a problem. The SAS can also suppress or turn off inappropriate schemas that might be triggered inadvertently. The failure to suppress these inappropriate schemas can result in “capture errors.”
Controlled attentional processes
require conscious control. They are operational when one responds to novel or difficult situations for which there is no prior learned reaction. In these instances, attention must be voluntarily directed.
Problem solving calls on this processing
Metacognition refers to
any process that monitors, regulates, or controls any aspect of cognition
The binding problem
How does all this information from the visual field come together to produce a unified perceptual object?
Distinct cell subgroups of this constellation stand for individual features and may be separated by relatively large physical distances in the brain, but the dynamic activities of all of them represent an entire object.
inverse projection problem
The fact that a particular image on the retina (or a computer vision machine’s sensors) can be created by many different objects
The ability to recognize an object seen from different viewpoint
When two stimuli that are in slightly different positions are flashed one after another with the correct timing, movement is perceived between the two stimuli.
law of similarity
Similar things appear to be grouped together
law of good continuation
: Points that, when connected, result in straight or smoothly curving lines are seen as belonging together, and the lines tend to be seen in such a way as to follow the smoothest path.
law of proximity,
or nearness: Things that are near each other appear to be grouped together.
the principle of common region
: Elements that are within the same region of space appear to be grouped together.
principle of uniform connectedness
states: A connected region of visual properties, such as lightness, color, texture, or motion, is perceived as a single unit.
principle of synchrony
states: Visual events that occur at the same time are perceived as belonging together.
law of common fate
states: Things that are moving in the same direction appear to be grouped together
law of familiarity,
things that form patterns that are familiar or meaningful are likely to become grouped together
every stimulus pattern is seen in such a way that the resulting structure is as simple as possible
the perceptual separation of one object from another
When we see a separate object, it is usually seen as a figure that stands out from its background, which is called the ground
An algorithm is a procedure that is guaranteed to solve a problem
Recognition-by-components (RBC) theory
nswers this question by proposing that our recognition of objects is based on features called geons, a term that stands for “geometric ions,” because just as ions are basic units of molecules, these geons are basic units of objects.
non-accidental properties (NAPs).
NAPs are properties of edges in the retinal image that correspond to the properties of edges in the three-dimensional environment.
each geon can be discriminated from other geons
The ability to identify an object if we can identify its geons is called the principle of ____________ recovery
Global image features
Can be perceived rapidly and are associated with specific types of scenes - features are holistic and rapidly perceived
Degree of naturalness
Natural scenes have textured zones and undulating contours. Man-made scenes, such as the street, are dominated by straight lines and horizontals and verticals
Degree of openness.
Open scenes, such as the beach, often have a visible horizon line and contain few objects. The street scene is also open, although not as much as the beach. The forest is an example of a scene with a low degree of openness.
Degree of roughness.
Smooth scenes (low roughness) like the beach contain fewer small elements. Scenes with high roughness like the forest contain many small elements and are more complex.
regularly occurring physical properties of the environment
that people can perceive horizontals and verticals more easily than other orientations
Apparently, people make the light-from-above assumption because most light in our environment comes from above. This includes the sun, as well as most artificial light sources.
states that we perceive the object that is most likely to have caused the pattern of stimuli we have received
Modern psychologists have quantified Helmholtz’s idea of perception as inference by using a statistical technique called ________ inference that takes probabilities into account
If one image is presented to the left eye and a different image is presented to the right eye, perception alternates back and forth between the two eyes
describes a set of cognitive processes that allow us to concentrate on one set of events in our environment while ignoring other events.
This ability to home in on a relevant event to the exclusion of all else can occur so rapidly that the perceiver may be momentarily unaware of all of the stimuli that have been excluded.
Focused attentional processing
When you have to use your attention more deliberately in order to look at each object because preattentive processes could not be effective
Our basic biological ability to react to any distinctive change in our environment and pay attention to it.
These two circuits process information about the spatial location of objects and allow us to name them.
When a stimulus is no longer novel, we don’t orient toward it because it does not capture our attention;. This is called __________ and accounts for how we get use to things like tight shoes or the traffic noise outside your window.
a cognitive ability to focus in or sharpen our attention, just as we do when we move the beam of a flashlight or focus a zoom lens
The rapid labeling of small quantities of simultaneously presented items
_______ _______ acts as a buffer memory system to host the incoming stream long enough for us to pay attention to it.
Cognitive psychologists refer to sensory storage by different names, including sensory memory and sensory information storage (SIS)
rapid eye movements, used while reading - eyes rapidly dart from point of fixation to point of fixation, during which most information is gathered
Four distinct properties of sensory storage
capacity, duration, forgetting, coding
one event masks or hides the other event from conscious awareness
it (sensory storage) stores information before it is categorized.
Sensory storage is like a tray that holds events long enough for our attentional system to grasp the right item. Within the first second after an event this is captured by sensory storage, it is processed by the attentional system
Because attention to physical properties of a stimulus comes _____, we say that attention shows an _____-selection filter.
Some messages - no matter what their physical characteristics - are so important they are permanently set to be relevant or pertinent (e.g. the sound of your name, the scream “Help!”, the odor of mold, even an angry face)
the late-selection theory
It is as if our attentional system waits for all of the information to combine before it makes its decision to focus the spotlight.
some of your adjustments to the world around you are being handled automatically by your attention system, which alerts you to danger
ou can reign automatic processes in with conscious effort
Typing is considered a ______ _____, where the learner’s intention to be able to precisely duplicate a variety of predictable circumstances.
In contrast, open skills are applied in unpredictable circumstances and the person must commit attentional resources to the environment to compensate for the variability they encounter.
Even though we are engaged in a controlled process, we fail to evaluate what we are doing when we exercise control
Capacity theory of attention
States that our ability to focus attentions varies with the number and complexity of the tasks and how mentally energized we are at the time
the moment when you are shifting your attentional focus and are unable to attend fully to a new target event
A decrease in the ability to perceive repeated stimuli during a rapid serial presentation of items
Similar to attentional blink, when you flash similar photos quickly and repeatedly on a screen, it is difficult to discern any difference between the pictures
Any activity that consumes attentional resources (i.e. controlled processing) will have an effect on performance on another attention-memory task
a difficulty in recognizing two or more objects at the same time
When people are unable to focus their attention on a portion of their visual field
Which phrase (in the Pinker reading) refers to dualism?
The Ghost in the Machine