the level of intensity that lifts a stimulus over the threshold of conscious awareness; it's usually defined as the intensity level at which people can detect the presence of the stimulus 50% of the time
In vision, the process through which the lens changes its shape temporarily to help focus light on the retina.
A flexible membrane running through the cochlea that, through its movement, displaces the auditory receptor cells, or hair cells.
cues for depth that depend on comparisons between the two eyes
binocular depth cues
the point where the optic nerve leaves the back of the eye
processing that is controlled by the physical message delivered to the senses.
the aspect of the visual experience that changes with light intensity; in general, as the intensity of light increases, so does its perceived brightness
receptor cells that react to invisible molecules scattered about in the air or dissolved in liquids, leading to the senses of smell and taste
the bony, snail-shaped sound processor in the inner ear where sound is translated into nerve implulses
neurons that respond to a cooling of the skin by increasing the production of neural impulses
receptor cells in the central portion of the retina that transduce light energy into neural messages; they operate best when light levels are high, and they are primarily responsible for the ability to sense color
a binocular cue for depth that is based on the extent to which the two eyes move inward, or converge, when looking at an object.
The transparent and protective outer covering of the eye
the process through which the eyes adjust to dim light
the smallest detectable difference in the magnitude of two stimuli
cells in the visual cortex that respond to very specific visual events, such as bars of light at particular orientations
a psychological term used to describe the gustatory experience. Flavor is influenced by taste, smell, and the visual appearance of food, as well as by expectations about the food's quality
the "central pit" area in the retina where the cone receptors are located
the idea that pitch perception is determined partly by the frequency or neural impulses traveling up the auditory pathway.
the idea that neural impulses generated by pain receptors can be blocked, or gated, in the spinal cord by signals produced in the brain
the organizing principles of perception proposed by Gestalt psychologists. These principles include the laws of proximity, similarity, closure, continuation, and common fate.
Gestalt principles of organization
the sense of taste
the dimension of light that produces color; hue is typically determined by the wavelength of light reflecting from an object
the ring of colored tissue surrounding the pupil
in perception, the ability to sense the position and movement of one's body parts
the flexible piece of tissue that helps focus light toward the back of the eye
the small part of the electromagnetic spectrum that is processed by the visual system
the portion between the eardrum and cochlea containing three small bones (the malleus, incus, and stapes) that help to intensify and prepare the sound vibrations for passage into the inner ear.
cues for depth that require input from only one eye
monocular depth cues
the sense of smell
a theory of color vision proposing that cells in the visual pathway increase their activation levels to one color and decrease their activation levels to another color---for example, increasing to red and decreasing to green.
an adaptive response by the body to any stimulus that is intense enough to cause tissue damage
the collection of processes used to arrive at a meaningful interpretation of sensations
perceiving the properties of an object to remain the same even though the physical properties of the sensory message are changing
inappropriate interpretations of physical reality. Perceptual illusions often occur as a result of the brain's using otherwise adaptive organizing prinicples
an illusion of movement that occurs when stationary lights are flashed in succession
the external flap of tissue normally referred to as the "ear"; it helps capture sound
the psychological experience that results from the auditory processing of a particular frequency of sound
the idea that the location of the auditory receptor cells activated by movement of the basilar membrane underlies the perception of pitch
the field of psychology in which researchers search for ways to describe the transition from the physical stimulus to the psychological experience of that stimulus
the hole in the center of the eye that allows light to enter
in vision, the portion of the retina that, when stimulated, causes the activity of higher order neurons to change
the idea proposed by Biederman that people recognize objects perceptually via smaller components called geons
recognition by components
the thin layer of tissue that covers the back of the eye and contains the light sensitive receptor cells for vision
a binocular cue for depth that is based on location differences between the images in each eye
receptor cells in the retina, located mainly around the sides, that transduce light energy into neural messages; these visual receptors are highly sensitive and are active in dim light.
a receptor system attached to the inner ear that responds to movement and acceleration and to changes in upright posture.
the elementary components, or building blocks, of an experience (such as a pattern of light and dark,a bitter taste, or a change in temperature).
the tendency of sensory systems to reduce sensitivity to a stimulus source that remains constant.
a technique used to determine the ability of someone to detect the presence of a stimulus
the physical message delivered to the auditory system; a mechanical energy that requires a medium such as air or water in order to move
the receptor cells on the tongue
processing that is controlled by one's beliefs and expectations about how the world is organized
the process by which external messages are translated into the internal language of the brain
a theory of color vision proposing that color information is extracted by comparing the relative activations of three different types of cone receptors
the eardrum, which responds to incoming sound waves by vibrating
organs of the inner ear that contain receptors thought to be primarily responsible for balance.
the ability to process fine detail in vision
neurons that respond vigorously when the temperature of the skin increases
the principle stating that the ability to notice a difference in the magnitude of two stimuli is a constant proportion of the size of the standard stimulus. Psychologically, the more intense a stimulus is to begin with, the more intense it will need to become for one to notice a change