Psychology: Chapter 4 (Sensation and perception) part 1
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bringing information from the outside world into the brain
selecting organizing and interpreting sensory information
1. Sensory organs receive energy from or are otherwise stimulated by the environment
2. sensory receptors convert this energy into neural signals which are sent to the brain
Absolute threshold of sensation
smallest detectable level of stimulus
Just noticeable difference (JND)
smallest detectable change in intensity of stimulus
- Just noticeable difference varies as a proportion of the intensity
- for ex. vision has to be intensified much less than taste for you to perceive difference
- converting a stimulus into neuronal signals
- sensory receptors produce neural impulses when they receive chemical/physical stimulation
the way information is encoded in neural signals
frequency is encoded by the rate of neuronal firing
different neurons in the inner ear code for different frequencies
Is frequency theory or place theory correct?
- Both are used for all frequencies
- Place coding is relied on more for high frequencies, frequency coding for low frequencies
- greater sensitivity in low light
- found more in retina periphery (better light sensitivity)
- not as sensitive to light
- found more in the center of retina
What are the three different types of photopigments for cones?
- S (blue light)
- M (green light)
- L (red light)
Color vision results from activity in 3 different types of cones that are sensitive to different wavelengths (S, M, L)
What is unexplained by the trichromatic theory?
Why color leave afterimages
- Visual system treats colors as complementary pairs
- all colors are combinations of yellow OR blue PLUS red or green
- accounts for idea of opposite colors
when is unique blue perceived?
when S receptor is stimulated and M and L are not
when is unique yellow perceived?
when M and L are stimulated and S is not
when is unique red perceived?
When L & S are stimulated and M is not
x topic cortical organization
primary sensory cortices represent sensory info in a structured manner
adjacent points in space are processed by adjacent points in visual cortex
similar tones are processed near each other
more cortical space is devoted to more sensitive regions of body (somatosensory cortex)
process of transduction
sensory receptors ->connecting neurons -> thalamus -> cortex
signal detection theory
detecting a stimulus requires making a judgment about its presence based on subjective interpretation of ambiguous information
a participant tends to report detecting a signal when trial is ambiguous
decrease in sensitivity to constant level of stimulation
5 basic qualities of taste
sweet sour salty bitter umami (savory)
especially intense taste sensation
chemical particles involved in smell
thin layer of tissue embedded w. small receptors
brain center for smell
what is the process of odorants to brain?
odorants-> naval cavity -> olfactory epithelium -> olfactory bulb -> other brain areas
chemicals released by animals which trigger behavioral reactions in other animals
- conveys sensations of temperature, pressure and pain
- delivers sense of where our limbs are in space
where are pressure receptors located?
at bases of hair follicles and capsules in skin
what are the two types of pain and why are they different?
- fast fibers: sharp immediate pain (myelinated axons)
- slow fibers: chronic, dull, steady pain (non-myleniated fibers)
process of sound waves reaching brain
outer ear-> auditory canal ->eardrum -> ossicles -> oval window -> movement of basilar membrane -> hair cells bend -> info is sent to auditory nerve
eye's thick transparent outer layer, focuses incoming light
light is bent farther inward and focused to form image on retina
contains photoreceptors that transduce light into neural signals
change in shape of lens to focus on distant/near objects
how is info processed from the left visual field?
info reaches retina (via ganglion axons) -> optic nerve ->optic chiasm -> thalamus -> R. visual cortex
3 categorizations of color
- saturation (color's purity, vividness of hue)
- brightness (determined by amount of light which reaches eye)
subtractive color mixing
- color is determined by mixture of wavelengths from a stimulus
- occurs within stimulus
- is a physical process
- ex. mixing paints
subtractive primary colors
red, yellow, blue
additive color mixing
interaction of wavelengths within the eye's receptors
perceptions of balance
gate control theory
- to experience pain, pain receptors must be activated, neural "gate" in spinal cord must allow signals through to brain
- cognitive factors such as distraction and positive moods can close the gate
parallel processing streams in vison
- ventral stream: perception and recognition of objects (what)
- dorsal stream: spatial perception (where)
when someone experience some blindness but subconsciously retains some sight
what is the purpose of cochlear implants?
to restore hearing for people with loss of hair cells
kinesthetic sensory system
assists in perception body's position in space and in voluntary movement
What would you like to do?
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