The Brain, Structures, and Functions Flashcards

Terms Definitions
Consists of the cerebrum, thalamus, and hypothalamus(part of the limbic system). Collectively, this area is the largest and most highly developed part of the human brain. The source of intellectual activities
The uppermost part of the brainstem, which controls some reflex actions and is part of the circuit involved in the control of eye movements and other voluntary movements.
Includes the upper part of the spinal cord, the brain stem, and a wrinkled ball of tissue called the cerebellum. It controls the body's vital functions such as respiration and heart rate.
Right Hemisphere
Dominant for spatial abilities, face recognition, visual imagery and music.
Left Hemisphere
More dominant for language, calculations, math and logical abilities.
Cerebral Cortex
Consists of many thin layers of cells covering the cerebrum&is largely responsible for higher mental functions.It is divided into 4 sect.,called "lobes".The "roof" of this is called the neocortex,thought to be the most recently evolved part of the brain
The largest part of the human brain, associated with higher brain function such as thought and action. It is here that things like perception, imagination, though, judgment, and decision occur.
When people talk about "this" in the brain they are talking about the cerebral cortex. The folds in the brain add to it's surface area and therefore increase the amount of "this"
Gray Matter
Frontal Lobes
When you plan a schedule, imagine the future, or use reasoned arguments, these two lobes do much of the work. Associated with reasoning, planning, parts of speech, movement, emotions, and problem solving.
Motor Cortex
Located in the rear portion of the frontal lobe, this helps control voluntary movement.
Broca's Area
Allows thoughts to be transformed into words
Temporal Lobes
Associated with perception and recognition of auditory stimuli, memory, and speech.
Primary Auditory Cortex
Responsible for processing of auditory (sound) information. It is located on the temporal lobe, and performs the basics of hearing; pitch and volume.
Wernicke's Area
An important region for the processing of acoustic signals so that they can be distinguished as speech, music, or noise.
Occipital Lobes
Process images from the eyes and link that information with images stored in memory. Damage to this area can cause blindness.
Primary Visual Cortex
Is the part of the cerebral cortex that receives visual input from the retina. Damage to this part can result in full or partial blindness, as well as problems perceiving motion and colors.
Parietal Lobes
Associated with movement, orientation, recognition,&perception of stimuli. Reading and arithmetic are also functions in the parietal lobes.
Somatosensory Cortex
These areas receive information about temperature, taste, touch, and movement from the rest of the body.
It is involved in motor control and sensory analysis
Reticular Activation System
Crucial for maintaining a state of consciousness. Situated at the core of the brain stem between the medulla&midbrain. It is involved with circadian rhythms. Damage can lead to permanent coma.
Sometimes called Medulla Oblongata-It is responsible for maintaining vital body functions, such as breathing and heart rate
Basal Ganglia
Clusters of nerve cells surrounding the thalamus. They are responsible for initiating and integrating movements. Modifies movement on a minutes-to-minute basis.
Coordinates movement and is involved in learned rote movements. Balance, posture, and movement!
Limbic System
A collective term referring to several brain parts, including the hippocampus and the amygdala. These structures are important in the regulation of instinctual motor activity and emotional expression.
Controls drives of hunger, thirst, emotion, sex, and reproduction. The structure regulates body temperature, circadian rhythms, and control of the autonomic nervous system. In addition, it controls the pituitary gland.
Involved in memory, emotion, and fear. It "evaluates" the fight-or-flight situations.
Major clearinghouse for information going to/from the spinal cord&cerebrum. All sensory systems except smell pass through here before the information reaches the cerebral cortex. Also generates emotions.
Acts as a memory indexer-sending memories out to the appropriate part of the cerebral hemisphere for long-term storage and retrieving them when necessary.
Corpus Callosum
Body of nerve fibers that connect to the right and left hemispheres, allowing communication between the two.
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