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Psych Ch6 Outline - Perception Perceptual Thresholds...

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Perception Perceptual Thresholds Threshold refers to a point above which a stimulus is perceived and below which it is not perceived. Determines when one is conscious of a stimulus. Gustav Fechner psychologist who originally defined threshold as the smallest amount of stimulus energy that can be experienced. Absolute threshold intensity level of a stimulus such that a person will have a 50% chance of detecting it. J ust N oticeable D ifference refers to the smallest increase or decrease in the intensity of a stimulus that a person is able to detect. E.H. Weber renowned psychologist in perceptual research who developed a procedure to measure a JND. Weber’s law states that the increase in intensity of a stimulus needed to produce a JND grows in proportion to the intensity of the initial stimulus (larger difference is needed when comparing larger stimuli). Sensation versus Perception Sensation first awareness of an outside stimulus, which are meaningless pieces of info. Perception experience when brain assembles thousands of sensations into a meaningful pattern or image. They are usually biased or distorted with previous experiences affecting them. How sensations become perceptions: A stimulus activates a sensory organ’s receptors. The sensory organ transforms the stimulus into electrical impulses and sends them to the brain. The appropriate part of the brain transforms the impulses into basic sensations. Sensations are the first experience of the stimuli; they contain meaningless info. Personal experiences (different for everyone) add meaning and bias the sensations to convert them into perceptions.
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