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41 Cards in this Set

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Absolute threshold-
the minimum amount of stimulation that allows for an organism to detect a stimulus.

as stimulus intensity increases, an organism’s probability of detecting that stimulation gradually increases.
Cones-
visual receptor cells located at the back of the retina that are responsible for perception of color and most of our vision during the daytime.

provide more precisely detailed vision than rods.
Dark adaptation-
the adjustment of the eyes to lower levels of light. During this process, cones adapt first, and then rods; completed in an average time of 30 minutes.
Fovea-
a small, depressed area of densely-packed cones that is located at the center of the retina. Vision acuity is at its greatest here
Perception-
process during which stimuli are selected, organized, and interpreted
Phi phenomenon-
first defined by Max Wertheimer; the illusion of movement created when a series of visual stimuli are presented in rapid succession.

An example is T.V., which is actually just a series of still pictures which rapidly precede one another.
Retina-
light-absorbing tissue located on the inside back surface of the eye that processes visual images and sends information the brain through the optic nerve.

contains visual cells called cones and rods.
Rods-
visual receptors that are located outside of the fovea and are sensitive to dim light and responsible for night vision.
Sensory adaptation-
declined rate of sensitivity due to prolonged stimulation. For example, when you first walk into a room, you may notice a specific scent or odor, but after having been in that room for a while, you will no longer be able to detect the scent.
Biological rhythms
fluctuations in physiological functioning that are tied to the passage of time. Humans have four of these lasting one year (relates to sexual activity and the onset of mood disorders), 28 days (relates to the female menstrual cycle, male hormonal secretion, and mood fluctuations), and 90-minutes (relates to hunger, alertness, and daydreaming.
Circadian rhythms
daily, 24-hour cycles that humans and other species go through.

regulate sleep, hormone secretion, blood pressure, urination, and other physical functions.
Designer drugs
variations of known recreational drugs that are illicitly manufactured and molecularly modified so that new substances are created. Ecstasy is an example
electroencephalograph (EEG)
a device that uses recording electrodes that have been attached to the scalp to monitor the brain’s electrical activity over time.

use brain waves to record cortical activity; different patterns are associated with different states of consciousness.
Hypnosis
a state of heightened suggestibility that is typically induced by another person or hypnotist during which false memories can be created, and perceptions altered.
latent content
According to Freud, this is the hidden/disguised meanings of the events of a dream.
Meditation
a mental exercise that requires conscious attempts to focus attention in non-analytical ways; Zen, yoga, and transcendental meditation are all common practices. Many who practice this claim that it has many beneficial effects, both short-term and long-term. Although such claims have some validity, they are not for certain.
Night terrors
abrupt awakenings that typically occur during stage 4 sleep.

often cause people to scream, awaken, and bolt upright. Few people are able to recall what caused it and returning to sleep is a generally easy task.
Psychoactive drugs
chemical substances that are used to alter behavioral, mental, and emotional functions.

used for medical, spiritual, or recreational uses, among others.
REM sleep
a stage of deep sleep during which dreams are most vivid and memorable

marked by high-frequency, low-amplitude brain waves and rapid movements of the eyes.
Sleep apnea
a condition with unknown origins during which a person stops breathing for 15-60 seconds and is awakened by frequent, reflexive gasps for air.
Somnambulism
a disorder with unknown causes that is most common in children ages 11 and 12.

occurs when a person arises (usually during the first two hours of sleep) and wanders around despite their remaining to sleep.
Classical conditioning
known as Pavlovian conditioning, is a type of learning that occurs through association of stimuli with reflex responses. Ivan Pavlov demonstrated this conditioning through an experiment during which he measured the amount of saliva produced by a dog when a tone was played and meat powder was presented.
conditioned response (CR)
Based on previous conditioning, this is a learned reaction to a conditional stimulus. For example, the salivation of Pavlov’s dogs at the sound of the bell
conditioned stimulus (CS)
A once neutral stimulus that, through conditioning, gains the ability to trigger a conditioned response. The bell in Pavlov’s study was a conditioned stimulus.
Extinction
the gradual weakening and eventual disappearance of a conditioned response.

occurs when a conditioned stimulus is repeatedly presented without the unconditioned stimulus. For example, Pavlov repeatedly presented the dog in his experiment with only the tone and without the meat powder. Over time, the dog ceased to salivate at the sound of the toe.
Instrumental learning
another term for operant conditioning as termed by Edward Thorndike. Thorndike set up experiments to determine whether or not animals could actually think and believed that responses were instrumental in obtaining desired outcomes.
law of effect
Edward Thorndike’s principle that states that behaviors which receive good consequences tend to be repeated over behaviors which receive bad consequences, and therefore, behaviors are selected based upon their consequences. In other words, if the act of jumping elicits a treat, and the act of sitting elicits a whack on the nose, a dog will jump more often than sit.
Negative reinforcement
a type of reinforcement that encourages a certain response by removing an unwanted stimulus.

An example of negative reinforcement would be plugging your ears when the noise level is too loud—the action of plugging your ears will relieve the noise (the negative stimulus).
Operant conditioning
a form of learning in which a subject’s behavior is modified by the consequences of their responses. In most cases, this will emit voluntary behavior, but can sometimes influence involuntary responses as well. An example
would be a mouse’s learning not to go to its exercise wheel after having been shocked several times upon going there before. In this case, the mouse would be receiving a shock (consequence) based on its behavior of going to the exercise wheel (response).
Phobias
irrational, persistent fears of specific situations or objects.

People who have these will make conscious attempts to avoid whatever it is they are afraid of at all costs.

typically acquired through classical conditioning.
Positive reinforcement
a type of reinforcement that encourages a certain response by presenting a rewarding stimulus. For example, if a child were to receive $20 for every “A” he/she got on a test, they would be receiving positive reinforcement
Respondent conditioning
another term for “classical conditioning” that has developed over the years.
Secondary reinforcers
any type of stimulus that gains the ability to reinforce behavior due to its association with primary reinforcers. Money is a common example of this because it provides us with access to primary reinforcers such as food and shelter.
variable-ratio (VR)
a schedule where a reinforcer is given after a varying amount of nonreinforced responses. For example, a teacher hands out candy to children who answer an average of five questions correctly.
Hypnosis
a state of heightened suggestibility that is typically induced by another person or hypnotist during which false memories can be created, and perceptions altered
latent content
According to Freud, the hidden/disguised meanings of the events of a dream
7. Meditation
a mental exercise that requires conscious attempts to focus attention in non-analytical ways
9. Psychoactive drugs
chemical substances that are used to alter behavioral, mental, and emotional functions.

used for medical, spiritual, or recreational uses, among others.
10. REM sleep
a stage of deep sleep during which dreams are most vivid and memorable.

marked by high-frequency, low-amplitude brain waves and rapid movements of the eyes.
11. Sleep apnea
a condition with unknown origins during which a person stops breathing for 15-60 seconds and is awakened by frequent, reflexive gasps for air
Secondary reinforcers
any type of stimulus that gains the ability to reinforce behavior due to its association with primary reinforcers