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91 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
The process of detecting a physical stimulus, such as light, sound, heat, or pressure.
The process of integrating, organizing, and interpreting sensations
Specialized cells unique to each sense organ that respond to a particular form of sensory stimulation.
sensory receptors
The process by which a form of physical energy is converted into a coded neural signal that can be processed by the nervous system.
The smallest possible strength of a stimulus that can be detected half the time.
absolute threshold
The smallest possible difference between two stimuli that can be detected half the time.
difference threshold
A principle of sensation that holds that the size of the just noticeable difference will vary depending on its strength in relationship to the original stimulus.
Weber's law
The perception of stimuli that are below the threshold of conscious awareness.
subliminal perception
The decline in sensitivity to a constant stimulus.
sensory adaptation
the distance from one wave peak to another.
A clear membrane covering the visible part of the eye that helps gather and direct incoming light.
The white portion of the eye.
The opening in the middle of the iris that changes in size to let in different amounts of light.
The colored part of the eye, which is the muscle that controls the size of the pupil.
A transparent structure located behind the pupil that actively focuses, or bends, light as it enters the eye.
The process by which the lens changes shape to focus incoming light so that it falls on the retina.
Abnormality in the shape of the eye causing distant objects to appear blurry.
Abnormality in the shape of the eye causing objects near the eyes to appear blurry.
A thin, light-sensitive membrane located at the back of the eye that contains the sensory receptors for vision.
The long, thin, blunt sensory receptors of the eye that are highly sensitive to light, but not to color, and that are primarily responsible for peripheral vision and night vision.
The short, thick, pointed sensory receptors of the eye that detect color and are responsible for color vision and visual acuity.
A small area in the center of the retina, composed entirely of cones, where visual information is most sharply focused.
Area of the retina without rods or cones, where the optic nerve exits the back of the eye.
optic disk
The point at which the optic nerve leaves the eye, producing a small gap in the field of vision.
blind spot
In the retina, the specialized neurons that connect to the bipolar cells; the bundled axons of which form the optic nerve.
ganglion cells
Photoreceptor which adapts slowly to bright light.
Photoreceptor which reacts quickly to bright light.
In the retina, the specialized neurons that connect the rods and cones with the ganglion cells.
bipolar cells
The thick nerve that exits from the back of the eye and carries visual information to the visual cortex in the brain.
optic nerve
Point in the brain where the optic nerve fibers from each eye meet and partly cross over to the opposite side of the brain.
optic chiasm
The perceptual experience of different wavelengths of light, involving hue, saturation, and brightness.
The property of wavelengths of light known as color; different wavelengths correspond to our subjective experience of different colors.
The property of color that corresponds to the purity of the light wave.
The perceived intensity of a color, which corresponds to the amplitude of the light wave.
The theory that the sensation of color results because cones in the retina are especially sensitive to red light, green light, or blue light.
trichromatic theory of color vision
One of several inherited forms of color deficiency or weakness in which an individual cannot distinguish between certain colors.
color blindness
A visual experience that occurs after the original source of stimulation is no longer present.
The theory that color vision is the product of opposing pairs of color receptors, red-green, blue-yellow, and black-white; when one member of a color pair is stimulated, the other member is inhibited.
opponent-process theory of color vision
The technical term for the sense of hearing.
The intensity (or amplitude) of a sound wave, measured in decibels.
The unit of measurement for loudness.
The relative highness or lowness of a sound, determined by the frequency of a sound wave.
The distinctive quality of a sound, determined by the complexity of the sound wave.
The part of the ear that collects sound waves; consists of the pinna, the ear canal, and the eardrum.
outer ear
A tightly stretched membrane at the end of the ear canal that vibrates when hit by sound waves.
The part of the ear that amplifies sound waves; consists of three small bones: the hammer, the anvil, and the stirrup.
middle ear
The part of the ear where sound is transduced into neural impulses; consists of the cochlea and semicircular canals.
inner ear
The coiled, fluid-filled inner ear structure that contains the basilar membrane and hair cells.
The membrane within the cochlea of the ear that contains the hair cells.
basilar membrane
The hairlike sensory receptors for sound, which are embedded in the basilar membrane of the cochlea.
hair cells
Technical name for the sense of smell.
Technical name for the sense of taste.
Chemical signals released by an animal which communicate information and affect the behavior of other animals of the same species.
The enlarged ending of the olfactory cortex at the front of the brain where the sensation of smell is registered.
olfactory bulb
The specialized sensory receptors for taste that are located on the tongue and inside the mouth and throat.
taste buds
The unpleasant sensation of physical discomfort or suffering that can occur in varying degrees of intensity.
Specialized sensory receptors for pain that are found in the skin, muscles, and internal organs.
A neurotransmitter that is involved in the transmission of pain messages to the brain.
substance p
The theory that pain is a product of both physiological and psychological factors that cause spinal gates to open and relay patterns of intense stimulation to the brain, which perceives them as pain.
gate control theory of pain
The technical name for the sense of location and position of body parts in relation to one another.
kinesthetic sense
Sensory receptors, located in the muscles and joints, that provide information about body position and movement.
The technical name for the sense of balance, or equilibrium.
vestibular sense
Information processing that emphasizes the importance of sensory receptors in detecting the basic features of a stimulus in the process of recognizing a whole pattern.
bottom-up processing
Information processing that emphasizes the importance of the observer's knowledge, expectations, and other cognitive processes in arriving at meaningful perceptions; analysis that moves from the whole to the parts; also called conceptually driven processing.
top-down processing
A school of psychology founded in Germany in the early 1900s that maintained that our sensations are actively processed according to consistent perceptual rules that result in meaningful whole perceptions, or gestalts.
Gestalt psychology
A gestalt principle of perceptual organization that states that we automatically separate the elements of perception into the feature that clearly stands out (the figure) and its less distinct background (the ground).
figure-ground relationship
Perception of information by some means other than through the normal process of sensation.
ESP (extrasensory perception)
The scientific investigation of claims of paranormal phenomena and abilities.
The use of visual cues to perceive the distance or three-dimensional characteristics of objects.
depth perception
Distance or depth cues that can be processed by either eye alone.
monocular cues
Distance or depth cues that require the use of both eyes.
binocular cues
The tendency to perceive objects, especially familiar objects, as constant and unchanging despite changes in sensory inputs.
perceptual constancy
The perception of an object as maintaining its size despite changing images on the retina.
size constancy
The perception of a familiar object as maintaining the same shape regardless of the image produced on the retina.
shape constancy
The misperception of the of the true characteristics of an object or image.
perceptual illusion
A famous visual illusion involving the perception of the identical length of two lines, one with arrows pointed inward, one with arrows pointed outward.
Muller-Lyer illusion
A visual illusion involving the misperception that the moon is larger when it is on the horizon than when it is directly overhead.
moon illusion
The influence of prior assumptions and expectations on perceptual interpretations.
perceptual set
German Gestalt psychologist who is best known for his studies on the perception of motion; also studied the perception of pain and the effects of past experience on perception; immigrated to the United States in 1938.
Karl Duncker
German psychologist who founded Gestalt psychology in the early 1900s, immigrated to the United States in 1933, studied the optical illusion of apparent movement, and described the principles of perception.
Max Wertheimer
Specialized sensory receptors for pain that are found in the skin, muscles and internal organs.
A condition characterized by a partial or complete loss of the sense of smell.
The body's natural painkillers that are procuced in many parts of the brain and body.
endorphins and enkephalins
A taste category that involves the distinctive taste of monosodium glutamate, aged cheeses, mushrooms, seaweed, and protien rich foods such as meat
A phenomenon in which a person continues to experience intense painful sensations in a limb that has been amputated.
phantom limb pain
Myelinated nociceptors involved in the fast pain system that transmit sharp, intense, but short lived pain signals, immediately following a surgery.
A-delta fibers
law that states when several perceptual organizations are possible, the perceptual interpretation that will occur will be the one that produces the best, simplest, and most stable shape.
law of Pragnanz
Monocular cue that suggests that faraway objects appear hazy or slightly blurred.
arial perspective
Gestalt principle of organization that refers to the tendency to percieve objects that are close to one another as a unit or figure.
law of proximity
Binocular cue that relies on the fact that our eyes are set a couple of inches apart and thus cast slightly different images on the retina of each eye.
binocular disparity
According to the trichomatic theory of color vision, color results becasue cones in the eye are especially sensitive to which three colors of light?
red, green & blue light