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Lecture 9. Sensation and Perception (Part IIIposted)

Lecture 9. Sensation and Perception (Part IIIposted) -...

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Introduction to Psychology PSYC 1001, Section E Wednesday, Oct. 22, 2008 Sensation & Perception (Part III)
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Midterm #2: Monday, Oct. 27 Format: 50 – 55 Multiple Choice Questions (Worth 35%) Time & Location: Regularly Scheduled Class Material Covered… From Text: Chapter 3 (excluding p107) and Chapter 4 (excluding Touch, Pain, and the Kinesthetic & Vestibular systems) From Lecture: See slides 45 – 55 (of this lecture) Note: Supplemental slides pertaining to psychophysical scaling are included in this document (see slides 56 – 60) Please Note… Extra Office Hours: Friday, Oct. 24; 10 am – 12 noon (A525 Loeb Bldg) Practice Quiz will be posted Thursday evening (WebCT)
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Today’s class (Objectives) The Auditory System Sound: The Auditory Stimulus Human Hearing Capacities Sensory Processing in the Ear Auditory Perception Place Theory Frequency Theory Auditory Localization The Gustatory & Olfactory Systems
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Like vision, the auditory system provides input about the external world… Again, our perceptual system must transform auditory stimulation into the psychological experience of hearing Philip Mercier’s The Sense of Hearing (1744-47)
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The Auditory System The Stimulus: Sound Waves Vibrations of molecules (pressure changes) travelling through some physical medium (air) A sound can result from anything which causes changing pressure waves by forcing molecules alternately closer together (compression) and farther apart (rarefaction) Vibrating objects; by forcing air through a chamber; by releasing a burst of air
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The Auditory Stimulus: Sound Sound waves are characterized by their… But, the physical properties of sound interact in complex ways to produce perceptions of these sound qualities Physical Property Psychological Quality Wavelength Pitch Amplitude Loudness Purity Timbre
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The Auditory System
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The Auditory Stimulus: Frequency Wavelengths of sound are described in terms of their frequency (Hz cycles/sec.) Frequency corresponds to our perception of pitch High frequency High pitch Low frequency Low pitch Auditory range for humans: 20 – 20 000 Hz Sounds at either end of this range are harder to hear Sensitivity to high frequency tones declines with increasing age Note: Other organisms have different hearing capabilities
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The Auditory Stimulus: Amplitude The Amplitude (decibels, dB) of sound waves corresponds to the perceived loudness (Intensity) A measure of the magnitude of change in air-molecule density (i.e., air pressure variation) Perceived loudness is higher with increasing decibel level… Doubles every ~10 decibels High amplitude Loud sound Low amplitude Soft sound But, to be more precise… Amplitude and frequency actually interact to determine the perception of loudness Demonstration
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The Auditory Stimulus: Amplitude Loud sounds can be harmful!
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Human Hearing Capacities: Threshold Values The threshold for human hearing is a function of both sound pressure (amplitude, decibel level) AND
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