1.6.10 - What is Psychology? Psychology The scientific...

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What is Psychology?
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Psychology The scientific study of behavior (what  we do) and mental processes (inner  thoughts and feelings) Neuroscience Developmental Cognitive Social Clinical
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Is Psychology necessary? Humans tend to be overconfident Is Boston north or south of Paris? People tend to be more confident than  correct Hindsight Bias The “I-knew-it-all-along” phenomenon
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If you want to teach a habit that persists, reward the  desired behavior ever time, not just intermittently Most abused children do  not  become abusive adults The brain remains active during sleep Fear of harmless objects, such as flowers, are as  easy to acquire as fears of potentially dangerous  objects, such as snakes
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Modules 3 Psychological approaches Statistics Experiments
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You=genetics x experience
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“Nature-nurture” Debate No longer exists This is an antiquated approach to  neuroscience, psychology and behavior All behaviors and phenotypes  (observable traits) are a product of both  genetics (“nature”) and  experience/environment (“nurture”)
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Behavior Genetics Field used to explain and predict  individual differences
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Genes: Our codes for life Genes live on  chromosomes,  which are found in  every human cell
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Chromosomes Humans have 46  chromosomes 23 from mother and  23 from father
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Genes Small segments of DNA Humans have ~30,000 genes Genes can either be active  (expressed) or inactive
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Genome The set of complete instructions for  making an organism, containing all the  genes in that organism.   Thus, the human genome makes us  human and the genome for  drosophila  makes it a common house fly.
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Our genome is very similar to  other primates Humans share ~96% genome with  chimpanzees The small genetic differences lead to  large functional differences (e.g.  language) 
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Twin Studies Some researchers think it’s a good way  to tease apart the influences of  environment and heredity Identical twins share the exact same  genetic makeup
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Twin Studies
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Twin Studies However, keep in mind that identical  twins are also treated differently by the  environment (e.g. other people) than  fraternal twins or other siblings Thus, they not only share the same  genes, but probably have a more similar  environment than fraternal twins
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Adoption Studies  (Separated Twins) Same genes, different environment Provides opportunity to examine the effects of  environment on outcome
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Adoption Studies  (Separated Twins) However, some of the anecdotal evidence of  similarity in twins reared apart could just be  coincidence Also, adoption agencies tend to place separated  twins in similar homes
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1.6.10 - What is Psychology? Psychology The scientific...

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