01 - Introduction to Brain and behav

01 - Introduction to Brain and behav - Introuction to Brain...

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Unformatted text preview: Introuction to Brain and Behavior 180 Instructor: Jan Weiner Hunter College, CUNY Lecture outline • Defining biological psychology – Divisions of biopsychology • Evolution of the human brain • Why study the brain • Traumatic Brain Injury What is Biopsychology Biological Psychology • Branch of psychology that examines the brain & biological processes and their interaction with behaviors, thoughts, and feelings – A combination of basic psychology and neuroscience. – Alternate names: biopsychology, physiological psychology, behavioral neuroscience, and psychobiology. • Studies the physical mechanisms of the body that mediate our behaviors and our mental activity Historical Perspective on the brain Aristotle and Mentalism • 384-322 BC • Mentalism “Of the mind” – Behaviors are caused by the mind (or psyche). – Nonmaterial responsible for human thoughts, perceptions, and emotions • Function of brain is to cool the blood. History • Rene Descartes (1600s) philosopher, mathematician, scientist • Dualism, or the mind-body problem, behavior is controlled by interaction of 2 entities – Pineal Gland – “Animal Spirits” – “Reflex Theory” Materialism (Mid 1800s) • Behavior is a function of the material, or physical – Behavior is a result of the nervous system/brain activity – No nonmaterial mind – Scientifically most accepted • Supported evolutionary theories of Wallace and Darwin Evolutionary Psychology The goal of research in evolutionary psychology is to discover and understand the design of the human mind Why we are the way we are?? To accomplish this, relatively ordinary behavior is examined in light of Darwinian theory to understand human nature The Theory of Evolution 1859 – Darwin’s Theory of Natural Selection On the Origin of the Species Questions he confronted: – Why do species change? e.g., variation of birds, frogs, etc – Why were organisms so well designed for local environments? Darwin’s evolutionary perspective (1859) General Evolutionary Theory 3 parts: Natural (Survival) Selection Sexual Selection Inclusive Fitness Darwin’s Answer- I. NATURAL SELECTION (survival selection): “survival of the fittest” Variation : the raw material Inheritance : what gets passed down...
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This note was uploaded on 06/09/2011 for the course PSYCH 180 taught by Professor Ziegler during the Spring '10 term at CUNY Hunter.

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01 - Introduction to Brain and behav - Introuction to Brain...

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