Chapter 2: Congitive NeuroscienceCognitive neuroscience: the field of psychology that aims to discover the brain mechanisms that give rise to human mental functionsKajimura & Nomura: participants perform verbal while maintaining eye contact (A) or not (B)poorer performance during condition A than BEye contact affects word generation: they rely on shared cognitive processesThe Brain as the Organ of the Mind-Relationship between brain and behavior1)Functional Specialization-Brain is composed of modules: different parts of the brain, each of which is resposible for particular cognitive operations-Modules are dedicated input systems for processing specific mental faculties. Ex: only process color, or orientation of lines and visual stimuliLocalized to particular brain areasDomain specificFast and work in a mandatory manner“encapsualted”: do their job with what they have-principle of neural representation: our experiences are due to representations in our NS-Is the brain completely modular? How many modules are there? debates-Agreement: basic principle-Gall and Spurzheim: Phrenology:the study of the shape, size, and protrusions of the cranium in an attempt to discover the relationships between parts of the brain and various mental activities and abilities. -Hypothesis: specific functions are localized in specific parts of the brain-This theory isn’t still believed today, but led to subsequent research -Their 3 basic principles:1)The brain is the sole organ of the mind2)Basic character and intellectual traits are innately determined3)There are differentially developed areas in brain responsible for those differenceswhere there is variation in function, there must be variation in controlling structures-The more highly developed a function was, the larger it would be and therefore the more clearly it would show as a protrusion on the skull-So can find weaknesses and strengths just by looking at shape of skull-Weakness of this method: Method for localizing functions was very speculative Ex: Gall saw pic of mozart that rested head on forehead, so that area must be the area that supports music2)Opposition to functional specialization-Localization of function:the idea that there is a direct correspondance between specific cognitive functions and specific parts of the brain
-Franz:ablation: parts of cortex are destroyed and the consequences on behavior are observedMade holes in brain observe effect on retention of simple learned maze then open skull and see where hole wasObserved that as long as enough tissue remained in brain, the location of that tissue was irrelevent mental processes are actually due to activities of the brain as a whole-Lashley (learned Franz’s research) and also did studies on rats and found that:Small lesions did nothing mechanisms aren’t grouped within small areasPerformance declined as the difficulty of the task increased and/or the amountof brain damage increased.