Thinking Critically with Psychological Science
Why do psychology?
Problems with common sense:
Hindsight Bias- The I knew it all along effect. After knowing the outcome, it
is easy to come up with arguments for why the outcome happened. Applies to
Goal: to predict and explain behavior by only focusing on observable stimuli
No reference to mental processes
Learning: (Behaviorist perspective)
Relatively permanent change in behavior due to experience
Conditioning learning obser
Sensation and Perception
Sensation vs. Perception
Sensation: activation of sensory receptors
Transduction: sensory system that encodes stimulus energy as well as neural
Perception: organizing and interpre
Developing Through the Lifespan
Developmental Psychology- the study of physical, cognitive, and social change
throughout the lifespan
Nature vs. Nurture- what roles do genetics and environment play?
Continuity vs. stages- do things continually chan
January 18, 2012
Biology of the Mind
Cell body: Contains the following:
1. Nucleus has genetic code
2. Dendrites receive information from other neurons.
3. Axon sends information to the neurons
4. Terminal Buttons at the end of th
What is Memory?
Memory: persistence of learning over time through the storage and retrieval of
information. How prior experiences influence our current thoughts and behavior.
Information processing model Uses a computer as metaphor for memory and t
Thinking and Language
Cognition: mental activities associated with thinking, knowing remembering,
Concepts: mental groupings of similar objects, events, ideas, or people. The dimension
of similarity can be anything as long
January 11, 2012
What is Psychology?
Psychology the scientific study of behavior and mental processes
Behavior: anything an organism does that can be observed and recorded
Mental Processes: internal subjective experiences we infer from be
Social Psychology - scientific study of how we think about, influence, and relate to one
Social cognition - what we think influences
Attribution - a persons explanation of their own behavior and the behavior of
450 million people have psychological disorders worldwide
26% of adults in the US struggle with psychological disorders
Onset by early adulthood if someone is going to struggle with a disorder, the
symptoms will show up by 25
Emotion, Stress, and Health
Emotion: involves physiological arousal, expressive behaviors, and conscious
Stimulus bodily arousal emotion
Suggests emotion comes last. If you come into contact with a scary dog, your
What is Personality?
Personality: Distinctive patterns of trains/dispositions that characterize an individual
over time and across situations. Consistency is key.
Behavior patterns that distinguish us from one another
Freuds Psychodynamic The