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Unformatted text preview: Intro to Psych Sara Broaders Fall 07 Chapter 1 notes Terms • Psychological Science – the study of mind, brain, and behavior. An empirical discipline. • Mind – mental activity ie thoughts and feelings • Brian – active nerve cells and associated chemical rxn’s that stimulate the body and mind • Behavior – describes a variety of actions, subtle and complex, that occurs in all organism. • Evolutionary Theory – In psychological science, a theory that emphasizes the inherited adaptive value of behavior and mental activity throughout the entire history of a species. • Natural Selection – Darwin’s theory that those who inherit characteristics that help them adapt to their particular environment have a selective advantage over those who do not. • Adaptations - In evolutionary theory, the physical characteristics, skills or abilities that increase the chances of reproduction or survival and are therefore likely to be passed along to future generations. • Culture – The beliefs, values, rules, and customs that exist within a group of people who share a common language and environment and that are transmitted through learning from one generation to the next. • Nature-Nurture debate – The arguments concerning whether psychological characteristics are biologically innate or acquired through education, experience, and culture. • Mind-Body Problem – A fundamental psychological issue that considers whether mind and body are separate and distinct or whether the mind is simply the subjective experience of the physical brain. • Dualism – The philosophical idea that the mind exists separately from the physical body. 4 Themes in Psychology 1 – Research on mind, brain, and behavior has accumulated over time to produce the principles of psychological science. Science builds on the foundation of shared knowledge. 2 – A new biological revolution of profound significance is in progress at the dawn of the twenty-first century, bringing with it a deeper understanding of the human mind and behavior. • Brain chemistry – the brain works through the actions of chemicals known as neurotransmitters, which communicate messages between nerve cells. • Genetics and the Human Genome – Scientist have unlocked the human genome and now can map it out and are discovering links between genetics and behavior. • Watching the Working Brian – Technology has allowed scientist to watch the brain in action. We can see patterns and we know that there are specific parts of the brain for specific functions. (localization) 3 – The mind has been shaped by evolution and can adapt. See evolutionary theory, natural selection, and adaptation. • Solving adaptive problems – the body contains specialized mechanisms that have evolved to solve problems that required adaptations. The brain has evolved special circuits and structures that solve adaptive problems....
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- Fall '08
- neurons sensory neurons