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21 Cards in this Set

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  • Back

Information Processing Model

1. Thinking requires sensation, encoding, and storage of stimuli.

2. Stimuli must be analyzed by brain to be useful in decision-making.

3. Decisions made in one situation can be extrapolated an adjusted to help solve new problems.

4. Problem-solving is dependent not only on person's cognitive level, but also on context and complexity of problem.


Organized patterns of behavior and thought. Assimilation involves classifying new info into existing schema, and accommodation involves modifying existing schema to encompass new information.

Sensorimotor Stage

Birth to 2 years. Child learns to manipulate environment in order to meet physical needs. Consists of circular reactions (repetitive body movements). Goals are object permanence and representational thought (where child creates mental representations of external objects and events).

Preoperational Stage

2 to 7 years. Characterized by symbolic thinking, egocentrism, and centration. Imagination and pretending, inability to imagine what another person thinks, and tendency to focus on only one aspect of a phenomenon, such as conservation.

Concrete Operational Stage

7 to 11 years. Children understand conservation and havev empathy. Engage in logical thought as long as they are working with concrete objects and directly available information. Do not have abstract thinking yet.

Formal Operational Stage

Begins at 11. Child begins to think logically about abstract ideas, problem-solve.

Mental Set

Tendency to approach problems in the same way.

Availability Heuristic

Making decisions based on how easily similar instances can be imagined.

Representativeness Heuristic

Categorizing items on the basis of whether they fit prototypical, stereotypical, or representative image of category. Doing so while ignoring actual numerical information is the base rate fallacy.

Activation-Synthesis Theory

States that dreams are caused by widespread, random activation of neural circuitry.

Problem-Solving Dream Theory

States that dreams are a way to solve problems while you are sleeping.

Cognitive Process Dream Theory

States that dreams are merely the sleeping counterpart of stream-of-consciousness.

Mesolimbic Reward Pathway

One of four dopaminergic pathways in brain that is most associated to drug addiction. Includes nucleus accumbens, ventral tegmental area, and the connection between them called the medial forebrain bundle.


The sensory environment.

Categorical Perception

Ability to distinguish a word despite varied pronunciation between people.

Errors of Growth

Where a child applies a grammatical rule (often a morpheme) to a situation where it does not apply (e.g. runned instead of ran).

Nativist Biological Theory

States that there is some innate capacity for language. Involves transformational grammar (syntactic reordering that retains meaning), the language acquisition device (theoretical pathway in brain that allows infants to process and absorb language roles), and critical or sensitive periods for learning.

Learning (Behaviorist) Theory

Language acquisition by operant conditioning.

Social Interactionist Theory

Focuses on interplay between biological and social processes in language development.

Whorfian Hypothesis/Linguistic Relativity Hypothesis

Suggests that our perception of reality is determined by the content of language.

Arcuate Fasciculus

Bundle of axons that connects Broca's and Wernicke's area.