Basic Psychology (Free Access)

SENSATION AND PERCEPTION

  • Sensation is process where stimuli is detected by sense organs and the same information is relayed via nerve transmission where the information is translated by the brain.
    • Sensation involves the detection of stimuli by the sense organs and is limited to simply detecting the stimuli 
    • Whereas perception is the organisation of all the sensations in order to understand the meaning of events taking place in the environment. Perception, in that sense, is the step after sensation.  
    • The process of sensation can be understood by the figure given below:
    • Incoming stimuli–>Sensory Receptors–>Nerve Impulse to the Brain (Transduction)–>Feature Detectors (Analysis of Stimulus)–>Reconstructed into Neural Impulse–> Comparison with preexisting schemas–> Recognition & Interpretation
  • Transduction is the process by which characteristics of a stimulus are converted into nerve impulses.
  • (Study tip:Remember VIBGYOR as the colours of the Rainbow, violet is 400 nm and Red is 700 nm. Since NET is a MCQ based exam remembering one part of this equation shall suffice i.e. knowing that violet (V) is 400 nm will automatically mean that Red (R) is 700 nm)

The sensory systems

  • There are 5 sensory systems in the human body, namely, vision (sight), audition (hearing), olfactory (smell), gustation (taste) and somesthetic senses (touch).
  • Vision: Stimulus for vision is detected by the human eye through electromagnetic ways or light waves.
  • These are measured in Nanometers (nm). Human eye is capable of sensing light waves between 700 to 400 nanometers
  • 400 to 700 nanometers is also commonly referred to as the VIBGYOR
  • The Human Eye: Light waves, as stimuli, enter the eye and reach the visual cortex (the part of the brain that senses visual stimuli) in the following manner: 
  • Light Waves–>Cornea–> Pupil–> Iris–>Lens–> Retina–> Optic Nerve–> Visual Cortex
    • Cornea is the transparent protective structure surrounded by the aqueous humor
    • Pupil is the adjustable opening which is usually black and dilates or constricts adjusting to the amount of light.
    • Iris are the muscles surrounding the pupil and they control the size of the pupil
    • Lens an elastic structures that becomes thinner to focus on distant objects and thicker to focus on nearby objects
    • Retina isa multilayered light sensitive tissue at the rear of the fluid-filled eyeball.
  • (Study tip: Remember the sequence of light sensation for the human eye as: C before a P, I before an L, R before an OV)
  • The lens reverses the incoming image (stimuli) from right to left and top to bottom and projects it upon the retina. Later, the brain changes this upside down visual input back to normal and we see the images that we perceive.
  • The lens is also responsible for clarity of close or far away vision. 
    • Myopia occurs when clear near sight exists but problem with seeing far away objects clearly, also known as Nearsightedness. Myopia requires the “minus” power spectacles
    • Hyperopia occurs with difficulty in seeing close by objects but clear far away objects, it is also aptly known as farsightedness. Hyperopia requires the “plus” powered spectacles.
  • (Study tip:remember myopia as minus power, and hyperopia as plus powered. Associate the two with people in your life and create a mental image)
  • The Retina is the seat of the light sensitive photoreceptors. Retina is also considered as an extension of the Brain. 
  • There are two types of Light sensitive photoreceptors, namely, Rods and Cones.  They convert light energy into nerve impulses through protein molecules called photopigments.
    • At the center of the retina there is Fovea. It is the place of densely connected cones and no rods, helping in clear and detailed colour vision.
  • Rods– (Dossenbach, 1998)
    • Mostly present in the periphery, away from the fovea.
    • More sensitive to light and therefore function best under dim light
    • Useful for dark adaptation. Dark adaptation is the progressive improvement in brightness sensitivity that occurs overtime under conditions of low illumination.
    • Also responsible for achromatic vision i.e. Black and white
    • 120 million rods in the eye
  •  Cones- Present in the fovea and slowly reduces in number while moving away.
    • Function best under bright illuminations
    • Responsible for colour vision
  • (Study tip 1: C for cones, C for colour vision. Therefore, rods are for black and white vision.)
  • (Study tip 2: Colour vision = most detailed vision, therefore, more cones in fovea which is the seat of visual acuity or sight with fine details. Less rods near fovea, more in the periphery)
  • Rods and cones connect to synapses of bipolar cells which have synapse with 1 million ganglion cells which have axon connections to the Optic Nerve.
  • (Study tip 1: Remember this as RCB-GO like a chant for Royal Challengers Bangalore GO!!)
  • Near the Fovea exists a place where there are no photoreceptors and hence, doesn’t assist vision, it is aptly named Blindspot.

Theories of Colour Vision

  • Trichromatic Theory- Thomas Young & Hermann von Helmholtz
    • Proposed that each individual cone is sensitive to one type of colour
    • Suggested that there are 3 types of colour receptors in the retina which respond to Blue, Green or Red colour.
    • If all three are stimulated then white is produced
    • Similarly, yellow = red + green receptor stimulation
    • The reason for dissatisfaction with this theory was that it could not explain the concept of After Image clearly.
    • After Image occurs when a visual sensation persists for a time after the original stimulus is removed. This visual sensation is differed from the original stimulus and cannot be explained by the three colour receptor theory but can be done by Ewald Hering’s Opponent Process theory.
  • (Study tip- BGR for color specific photo pigments)
  • Opponent process theory – Ewald Hering
    • Agreed with TCT in that there are three types of cones but proposed that these 3 types of cones have two types of colour receptors each which respond to two different wavelengths.
    • Receptors are Blue or Yellow; Red or Green; Black or White
    • This system explained After image perfectly
    • Proposed that this process also takes place in the Lateral Geniculate Nucleus located in the Thalamus.
    • This theory as incorrect with their understanding of cones but the mechanism for afterimage was correct
  • (Study tip- RG remains the same from above; Blue is with Yellow (BY); and B&W)
  • Dual Process theory – Valberg
    • Combination of the two theories for colour transduction process
    • TCT was correct about the concept of specific cones having specific photo pigments
    • Opponent process was incorrect about opponent process taking place in the cones, however correct in the sense that research has shown that this process takes place in the Ganglion cells extending till the visual cortex rather than the cones.
  • Colour deficient vision is of two types:
    • Dichromats are blind to one system of either Blue Yellow (BY) or Red Green (RG)
    • Monochromats are sensitive to only black & whites combinations
    • Related to sex linked inheritance and men are more prone to colour deficient vision.
  • Nerve Impulses move from optic nerve to the visual cortex and then these are analyzed by the visual association cortex, interpreting the incoming information with previously existing memories and knowledge, leading to perception.
  • Audition
    • Stimulus for audition or hearing is detected by the ears through pressure waves (sound waves) through a conducting medium. It is a form of mechanical energy
    • Sound has two major characteristics called Frequency and Amplitude.
    • Frequency is the number of sound waves or cycles per second. These cycles are measured in Hertz (Hz). 1 Hz = 1 Cycle. Normal human ear can hear between 20-20,000 Hz.
      • Frequency is related to pitch. Pitch is the quality that defines the “highness” or “lowness” of any sound.
      • More cycles of frequency per second = Higher Pitch, therefore, Higher Hz = Higher pitch.
    • Amplitude is the vertical size of the sound wave. It is also defined as the amount of compression and expansion of molecules in the conducting medium. 
      • Amplitude is related to loudness. Amplitude is measured in Decibels (dB). Human ear can hear between 0-140 dB, where 140 dB can cause deafness. 
      • Each increase of 10 decibels is equal to a tenfold increase in loudness.
  • The Human ear: Sound waves enter the ear and the reach the auditory canal in the following manner
  • Pinna à Auditory Canal à Hammer/Malleus à Anvil/Incus à Stirrup/Stapes) à Oval window à Cochlea à Basilar Membrane à Organ of Corti à Auditory Nerve à Thalamus à Auditory cortex
    • Pinna is the external or the visible part of the human ear. It helps in funneling the sound into the ear.
    • Auditory canal is the passageway to the ear drum.
    • Ear drum is also known as the tympanic membrane. It is a membrane which vibrates in response to the incoming stimuli (Sound waves) and passes it on the middle ear
    • Middle ear comprises of 3 tiny bones called Hammer/Malleus, Anvil/Incus, Stirrup/Stapes. They function to increase the amplitude of the sound waves by more than 30 times.
      • Hammer/Malleus is first bone and is firmly attached to the ear drum.
      • Anvil/Incus is the second bone attached to the hammer
      • Stirrup/Stapes is third bone attached to the Anvil on one end and the oval window on the other.
    • Inner ear comprises of the Cochlea, Basilar Membrane and the Organ of corti
      • Cochlea is a coiled, nail-shaped tube which is about 3.5 centimeters (1.4 inches) in length and is filled with fluid. Vibrations from the Hammer, anvil, and stirrup of the middle ear set the fluid inside the cochlea into motion.
      • Basilar Membrane is a sheet of tissue that runs within the cochlea.
      • Organ of Corti rests on the basilar membrane. It contains thousands of tiny hair cells that are the actual sound receptors. 
        • The tips of the hair cells are attached to another membrane called the tectorial membrane that hangs on the basilar membrane along the entire length of the cochlea. These hair cells synapse with the auditory nerve.
  • The entire process functions as follows: 
  • Sound waves strike the eardrumà pressure is created by the hammer anvil, and stirrup of the middle ear at the oval windowà this pressure sets the fluid inside the cochlea into motionà The fluid waves then vibrate the basilar membrane and the tectorial membraneà this causes a bending of the hair cells in the organ of Cortià release of neurotransmittersà neurotransmitters attach to the auditory nerveànerve impulses sent to the brain (Musiek & Baran, 2006).
    • The neural process is different for judging the pitch and loudness of any sound. 
    • Loudness: In case of loudness of sound or amplitude, high-amplitude sound waves cause the hair cells to bend more and release more neurotransmitters, therefore increasing the neural firing in the auditory nerve. Moreover, certain neurotransmitters have higher thresholds and fire only when the sound is of high amplitude or intense sound.
    • Pitch: There are two theories regarding pitch perception
    • Frequency theory by Ernest Rutherford
      • In this theory Rutherford propagated that the rate of firing of auditory neurons is equal to the frequency of the sound waves. Eg. If a neuron fires at a rate of 100, the frequency is also 100 Hz. 
      • Problem: The issue with the theory begins with frequencies above 1000 Hz as no neuron can fire at that speed and we know that humans can hear sounds of frequency higher that 1000Hz up till 20000 Hz.
    • Place theory of pitch perception propagated by Herman von Helmholtz supported by research by Georg von Bekesy
      • Bekesy found that high frequency waves produced waves that were at their height near the oval window, while low frequency waves produced slow waves that peaked near the cochlear canal.
      • The Place theory suggested that specific points in the cochlea, fluid waves peak depending on the frequency of the waves which also influence the bending of the hair cells.
      • This theory successfully explained pitch perception of varying frequency levels.
  • Sound localization is the ability of the nervous system to locate the source of sound by using information about time and intensity differences as perceived by the two ears.
  • Hearing loss is of two major types:
    • Conduction deafness: this is related to the problems of the mechanical systems (outer and middle ear) which are responsible for transmitting sound waves to the cochlea. 
    • Nerve deafness: this is related to damage of receptors in the inner ear or auditory nerve usually due to loud noise. Treatments include cochlear implants which send incoming auditory information directly to the brain. 
    • Hearing impairment is related to difficulties in hearing and not related to complete loss in hearing.
  • Taste or gustation
    • Taste buds are responsible for taste perception. They are chemical receptors concentrated along the tip, edges, and back surface of the tongue. 
      • 9000 taste buds
      • When a substance is chewed it interacts with the saliva and lodges into one of the receptors and creates complex patterns of neural activity which have four major qualities.
      • We have instinctual understanding of taste qualities and can discriminate toxin substances.
    • Four major qualities:
      • Sour, Sweet, Salty and Bitter as given by Hans Hering.
      • Fifth quality is called Umami (brothy taste eg. Soup) given by Lindermann. 
      • Umami increases the intensity of other taste qualities.
  • Olfaction or smell
    • Olfaction is the sense of smell. 
      • Receptors are long cells located at the nasal cavity and have numerous membranes.
      • 40 million receptors are present. They are known as cilia.
    • Olfactory bulbs are structures that receive neural input from the cilia or receptor cells of the nasal cavity
      • They are located in the forebrain, above the nasal cavity
      • Each odorous chemical has limited receptors in the olfactory bulb, and specific odors are coded in terms of the specific area of the olfactory bulb.
    • Pheromones are chemical odors which exist in natural body scents which may affect human behavior but not as extensively as they affect animal behaviour.
      • May be related to menstrual synchrony where women’s menstrual cycles begin to start in similar time once they begin to live together for a long time. Martha McClintock.
  • Somesthetic or Tactile or Skin/Body sense
    • Three major types
      • Touch is body sense
      • Kinesthesis is body sense
      • Equilibrium is vestibular sense
    • Touch has 4 major characteristics
      • Pressure is felt by pacinian corpuscles, free nerve endings, and basket cells
      • Pain is felt by free nerve endings
      • Warmth and Cold together form Temperature which is felt by free nerve endings
      • Pain Gate theory is a theory of pain perception suggested by Malzack and Wall. 
        • They claim that the spinal cord has a “gate” which decides whether to send the signal of pain to the brain or not, at the same time, the brain decides whether this “gate” should remain open or close, depending on its ability to tolerate the incoming pain. This is done through a chemical called Substance P.
    • Skin receptors are located in the somatosensory cortex of the brain.
    • Kinesthesis is the feedback one receives from one’s muscles and joints about the position and movement of the body.
      • Receptors are located in the nerve endings of muscles, joints and tendons. They are called proprioceptive receptors. 
    • Vestibular or equilibrium sense works in conjunction with kinesthetic senses.
      • Vestibular sense is the sense of body orientation
      • Receptors are located in vestibular apparatus of the inner ear
        • One part consists of three semicircular canals which contain receptors for head movement
          • They lay left-right, backward-forward, or up-down.
          • Depending on the head movement, the fluid in these canals moves appropriately and send signals to the brain about the position of the head.
          • They also respond to acceleration or deceleration. But remain in their position while at constant speed.
        • Vestibular sacs are responsible for information about the position of the body and whether it is titled or straight.
      • Motion sickness results as a disagreement between the movement of the eyes and the movement of the body. It is known as the sensory conflict theory.

PERCEPTION

  • Perception is a process that involves interpretation of the incoming sensory information by organizing them and attaching some meaning.
  • Perceptual process:
  • Raw sensory information is picked up by our sense organs by paying selective attention to them. 
  • These sensations, once attended to, are converted into nerve impulses and sent to the brain where they are filtered in accordance to their features and compared with existing mental frameworks (schemas)
  • Following which they are organised and interpreted as stimuli with meaning relevant to the individual.
  • Perception is carried out in two ways by the brain:
  • Bottom up processing: In this method, elements from the external stimuli are selected as individual elements and then combined to form a unified perception.
  • Top down processing: In this method, the incoming sensory information is understood with reference to existing concepts, ideas or expectation. Individual elements of the stimuli are not taken as independent entities are not as important as the whole stimuli.
  • (Study Tip: Top down is like a boss making decisions based on experience. Bottom up is a fresher where everything is new and is creating an opinion)
  • Perception is essentially a form of hypothesis testing based on incoming sensations. Perception is heavily dependent on where attention is focused. There are two processes that are involved with attention:
  • Focusing it on certain stimuli
  • Filtering out other extraneous elements in the environment
  • Shadowing: requires using both of the above mentioned processes. Shadowing refers to the process where two stimuli are simultaneously presented and the individual is asked to pay selective attention to one while ignoring the other.
  • Inattentional blindness is a phenomenon where an unattended stimulus fails to register itself into an individual’s consciousness.
  • Factors affecting attention are its intensity, novelty, movement, contrast, repetition, and the individual’s motives and interests.
  • Perceptual Organisation – Gestalt principles
    • “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts”
    • Gestalt psychologists sought to understand and created laws which explain how individuals organize perception into a whole rather than individual elements. These are:
    • Figure-ground relations: It is the tendency to organize stimuli into a central figure and a background.
      • In terms of vision the central figure appears to be on top
      • Distinct colour or contrast in borders make that part appear as part of the Figure
    • Similarity: When stimuli are seen as parts of a similar whole although they may be independent of each other.
    • Proximity: Elements of the stimuli which are near each other are perceived to be part of the same whole.
    • Closure: The tendency to close the gap of figure/stimuli to give it a definite form.
    • Continuity: The tendency to link individual elements of a stimuli together so that they form a continuous line that makes sense.
    • Contiguity: Objects which appear nearer in time are thought to be related to one another e.g. ventriloquists.
    • Common region: objects that are located in a common area or region are seen as part of the same group.
    • Perceptual schema is a mental representation of critical or distinctive features of stimuli such as people, events etc. It was propagated by Richard L. Gregory. 
    • The case of the USS Vincennes suggested that perception is influenced by expectations and due to a perceptual set
      • Perceptual set is a predetermined readiness to assess a stimuli in a certain way
    • Perceptual constancies are the tendency to view familiar stimuli as the same under varying circumstances. There are two types of visual perceptual constancies:
      • Shape constancy: to recognize stimuli as being the same even though they are seen from different angles.
      • Brightness constancy: the tendency to perceive the relative brightness of objects as similar under different conditions of illumination.
  • Depth Perception: The world we live in exists in a three dimensional plane where we are constantly making spatial movements. 
    • These movements are extremely precise and any digression from this precision can lead to unfortunate effects. 
    • An intriguing aspect of spatial understanding is that our retina can only process images in a two-dimensional plane while it is the brain that is required to create an understanding of three dimensional vision by recreating this two dimensional image into a three dimensional object. 
    • This requires an understanding of depth perception which is understood by the brain with the assistance of visual cues that exist in the environment known as monocular and binocular cues.
  • Monocular cues: these are depth cues which require the assistance of only one eye. Here, patterns of light and shadow effects are noted for creating the 3D effect. The following are types of perception using monocular cues:
    • Linear perspective: The tendency to view two running parallel lines as converging at a distance while looking at a 2D image.
    • Interposition effect: The tendency to perceive objects that cut a part of other objects as being closer to us.
    • Texture: the tendency to observe an object to be further away as the texture appears smooth and the tendency to observe an object as being closer as the texture appears grainer.
    • Relative size: The tendency to perceive one object being further away from another, provided they are of similar sizes, depends on the size of the image. The object that casts a smaller image is perceived to be further away.
    • Motion parallax: While in motion it is the tendency to perceive objects that are alongside us to be moving in an opposite direction while objects in a distance appear to move in a similar direction and they also appear to be moving slower.
    • Aerial perspective: The tendency to observe hazier objects as being farther away.
    • Height in a horizontal plane: The tendency to perceive objects that are further away as belonging to a higher plane compared to an object that is closer.

INTELLIGENCE & CREATIVITY

  • Intelligence is the ability to acquire knowledge, to think and reason effectively, and to deal adaptively with the environment.

History

  • Sir Francis Galton 
    • measured reaction time, hand strength, sensory acuity, and skull size
    • believed that people from privileged backgrounds were more intelligent
    • His mental skill measures were not valid or reliable because results were not complying
  • Alfred Binet
    • 2 assumptions
      • mental abilities increase with age
      • rate of gaining competence is a personal characteristic
    • Intelligence quotient (William Stern)
      • MA/CAx100 (MA = Mental Age, CA = Chronological Age)
      • Today IQ is an individual score in comparison to norms of other individuals of the same age
  • Lewis Terman created Stanford-Binet test (verbal items)
  • Arthur Otis
    • Army Alpha (verbal)
    • Army Beta (non-verbal)
  • Weschler (verbal and non-verbal)   WAIS  WISC  WPPSI  WAIS III  WISC IV

NATURE OF INTELLIGENCE

  • Two major approaches
    • Psychometric – structure and types of mental competencies
    • Cognitive – thought process underlying mental competencies

Psychometric theoretical approach

  • Statistical study of intelligence using observable measures
  • Factor analysis was used to arrive at components
  • Reduction of larger measures to smaller clusters
    • Charles Spearman
      • g-factor – general intelligence
      • s-factor – specific intelligence
    • L.L. Thurstone
      • 7 distinct abilities called “Primary Mental Abilities”
        • verbal comprehension
        • perceptual speed
        • number
        • spatial visualisation
        • associative memory
        • word fluency
        • reasoning
  • (Study Tip: VPN-SAW-R)
    • Raymond Cattell and Horn
      • Broke Spearman’s general intelligence “g” into 2 subtypes
        • Crystallized intelligence (gc) is the ability to apply previously learned knowledge to current problems (vocals and info tests)
          • Creates expertise
        • Fluid intelligence (gf) – arriving at novel problem solving situation which does not develop out of personal experience 
          • inductive reasoning
          • reason abstractly, logical, management of info in working memory
      • Humans move from fluid to crystallized through life
    • Carollus
      • Three structure model 
        • g
        • + Broad
        • Narrow
    • Guilford’s Structure of Intellect Model
      • Operations (5)
      • Products (6)
      • Contents (5)
      • 150 components are possible
      • Also known as
        • SI Theory
        • Factor analysis
        • OPC Model
Operations (5) Products (6) Contents (5)
Cognition   Unitssingle item of knowledge Visualperceived through seeing
2. Memory 2. Classes sets sharing common attributes 2. Auditory learning
3. Divergent Production 3. Relations units linked as opposites, associates, etc. 3. Symbolic symbols
4. Convergent Production 4. Systems multiple relationsinterrelated networks 4. Semantic meaning and ideas
5. Evaluation 5. Transformation changes – prospective, conversion or mutation of knowledge 5. Behavioural Acts
  6. Implication prediction, inferences, anticipation of knowledge  
  • Gave emphasis to divergent production (thinking) with 4 characteristics
    • Fluency – great number of ideas
    • Flexibility – variety of approaches
    • Originality – new, novel ideas
    • Elaboration – systematize and organise ideas
  • (Study Tip: F for FOE)

Cognitive Process theories

  • Explore specific information-processing and cognitive process that underlie intellectual ability
  • Robert Sternberg- Triarchic Theory of Intelligence
    • psychological process and diverse intelligence
    • 3 components:
    • Meta components
      • Higher order processes used to plan and regulate task performance
      • Type of fluid intelligence
    • Performance
      • mental processes used to perform based on experience
      • type of crystallized intelligence
    • Knowledge acquisition
      • learning from experiences, store information, combine new insights and previously acquired information
      •  combining crystallized and fluid intelligence
    • Further 3 different classes of adaptive problem solving were suggested (APC)
      • Analytical intelligence
        • academically oriented problem solving
        • traditional intelligence
      • Practical intelligence
        • skills to cope with daily needs
      • Creative intelligence
        • mental skills for novel problems
  • Other theories
    • Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences
      • Visuospatial intelligence
      • Interpersonal intelligence
      • Linguistic intelligence
      • Logical-mathematical intelligence
      • Natural intelligence
      • Intrapersonal intelligence
      • Bodily-kinesthetic intelligence
      • Musical intelligence
  •  (Study Tip: VILL NIBM)
    • Jensen Intelligence Theory (Arthur Jensen)
      • Level 1 (equal among races)
        • memory ability and simple associative learning
      • Level 2 (unequal among races)
        • abstract reasoning and conceptual thought
        • Whites and Asians have more
    • Vernon
      • Hierarchical Model of Intelligence 
  • Culture Fair/Free Intelligence Tests 
    • 1st – Army Examination Beta
    • Non-verbal material
      • They include Learning Potential Assessment Device (LPAD)
      • Culture Free Self Esteem Inventories
      • Black Intelligence Tests of Cultural Homogeneity
      • Raven Progressive Matrices
    • Not completely free
    • Cattell’s Culture Fair
      • 1-3 scales
      • Age > 4
        • Cultural experience
        • Verbal ability
        • Educational level
        • Special education
  • Goleman – Emotional Intelligence
    • 5 components
      • Emotional self-awareness
      • Self-regulation
      • Motivation
      • Empathy
      • Social skills
  • Emotional Intelligence given by John D. Mayer and Peter Salovey
    • 4 components
      • Perceiving emotions nonverbally
      • Using emotions to facilitate thought
      • Understanding emotions and creating action
      • Managing emotions
    • Measured by – Mayer Salovey Caruso Emotional Intelligence

Measurement of IQ

  • WAIS – verbal (6) and Performance (5) = (11)
    • Verbal & Performance
      • Information
      • Digit symbol
      • Comprehension
      • Picture completion
      • Arithmetic
      • Block Design
      • Similarities
      • Picture Arrangement
      • Letter-number sequencing
      • Object Assembly
      • Vocabulary
  • Psychometric standards
    • Correlation of IQ and Academic Performances are .60 for high school
  • Flynn effect
    • increase in intelligence across the world
    • 3 points per decade
  • Cultural measurements
    • 2 ways
      • Reasoning problems without any cultural knowledge base (eg. Ravens Progressive Matrices)
      • creating measures tied to specific cultures
  • Heredity, Intelligence and Environment correlation coefficient
    • 0.50 – 0.70 due to genes
  • Group differences
    • Arthur Jensen argued for ethnically based intelligence 
    • Difference are due to genetics of different ethnicities
  • Research on IQ shows:
    • Japanese have highest IQ.
    • Asian-Americans less than White Americans in verbal but more on spatial and mathematical reasoning
    • Hispanic same as white
    • African-Americans below white
  • Is intelligence testing biased?
    • 2 types
      • a) Outcome bias
        • underestimation of a person’s true intellectual ability
      • b) Predictive bias
        • Successful measurement for some groups but not others
  • Sex differences in types of intelligences
    • Men > women on spatial tools, target directed, mathematical reasoning
    • Women > men on perceptual speed, verbal fluency, mathematical calculations
  • Extremes of Intelligence
    • Intellectually gifted have an IQ > 130
    • Success depends on
      • highly developed mental abilities
      • creative problem solving
      • motivation and dedication
  • Mental Retardation
    • Mild – 50 – 70
    • Moderate – 35 – 50
    • Severe – 20 – 35
    • Profound – < 20

Creativity

  • Mel Rhodes
    • 4 P’s
      • process
      • product
      • person
      • place
  • Wallas
    • 5 stages
  • Guilford
    • Convergent thinking
    • Divergent thinking
  • Major approaches
    • Guilford
      • based on divergent thinking (production) Fluency, Flexibility, Originality, Elaboration
      • Traits of creative people and not creative people can help distinguish
      • Many components or traits
      • Think with greater fluency
            • ideational theory
            • associational theory
            • expressional theory
          • Flexibility
            • spontaneous
            • adaptive
          • Originality
          • Elaboration
          • Quantity vs Quality
          • Group vs Individual thinking
    • Mednick 
      • to think of an idea in a new, improbable way
      • created Remote Associates Test (RAT)
      • word finding test
        • three words are given, the idea is to think of one word that resembles all three present 
    • Wallas – predicting of creative thought depends on previous creative accomplishment
      • 4 processes
        • Preparation
        • Incubation
        • Illumination
        • Verification
    • Terrence
      • Minnesota studies confirmed that creative boys felt alienated because:
        • sanctions against divergence
        • may not be well rounded
        • learn on their own
        • attempt difficult tasks
        • searching for a purpose
      • Terrence Test for Creative Thinking (TTCT) based on creativity process
  • Creativity and Intelligence
    • Getzel and Jackson (high area = high IQ in scholastic achievement)
      • said Independent traits (adolescents)
      • used word association
      • uses of things
      • hidden shape
      • fables 
      • make up problems
    • Wallas and Logan
    • Spearman
      • decided separate states to creativity
      • Intelligence threshold below which creativity cannot exist

LEARNING

  • “Learning is a relatively enduring change in an individual’s behaviour.”
  • There are four types of learning. They are as follows: 
  • Habituation: it is decrease in the strength of a response due to repeated stimulus. 
  • Classical conditioning
  • Operant conditioning 
  • Observational learning  
    • Classical conditioning: 
      • Classical Conditioning takes place when an unconditioned stimulus, which evokes an unconditioned response, is associated with a neutral stimulus for a period of time such that the neutral stimulus converts into a conditioned stimulus and begins to evoke the same response which is now known as conditioned response. 
      • Ivan Pavlov, a Russian physiologist, was the first to study and write about the basic principles of classical conditioning.
      • KEY POINTS: 
      • Unconditioned stimulus (UCS) – A stimulus that leads to an involuntary response (unconditioned response).
      • Unconditioned response (UCR) – an involuntary response to an unconditioned stimulus.
      • Neutral stimulus (NS) – Stimulus that gives no specific response. 
      • Conditioned stimulus (CS) – The neutral stimulus, after continually being paired with the Unconditioned stimulus becomes capable of producing the response similar to the unconditioned stimulus.
      • Conditioned response (CR) – Response to a conditioned stimulus. Similar to the unconditioned response.
      • Acquisition – period of learning the response. 
      • Normal classical conditioning stages: 
        • UCS ———————————> UCR
        • NS + UCS ————————-> UCR 
        • NS=CR 
        • CS ————————————> CR 
      • Forward conditioning is the best form of classical conditioning. It is of two major sub types:
      • Delayed Conditioning- this is the fastest type of conditioning. Here the CS is presented first, followed by the UCS. But they overlap in their timing such that towards the end of the CS, the UCS starts.
      • CS+
      • UCS (timing overlap)à UCR/CR
      • Trace conditioning– Here, CS is presented first, then after a short delay the UCS is presented.
      • CS+ (short delay)……….UCSà UCR/CR
      • Two other types of conditioning are:
      • Simultaneous conditioning: As the name suggests, both CS and UCS are presented at the same time, i.e. simultaneously.
      • CS+UCS (simultaneously)à UCR/CR
      • Backward Conditioning: Here the UCS is presented first followed by the CS.
      • UCS+CSà UCR/CR

Basic concepts in classical conditioning 

  • Extinction: it is the disappearance or weakening of a learned response (CS=CR) following the removal or absence of the unconditioned stimulus.
  • Spontaneous recovery: the reappearance of a learned response after extinction has occurred if the UCS presented again.
  • Generalization: the tendency to respond to stimuli that are similar to the original conditioned stimulus with the conditioned response.
  • Discrimination: the response to stimuli is limited to only the conditioned stimulus and no other stimulus. 
  • Higher order conditioning: this occurs when a new neutral stimulus is paired with an existing conditioned stimulus such that it develops into a conditioned stimulus by itself and evokes the conditioned response. 
    • Conditioned responses formed out of higher order conditioning are weak and extinguish faster.
  • Two explanations for the working of classical conditioning
  • Stimulus substitution: Pavlov’s assumption that the same part of the brain is activated for unconditioned stimulus which is then replaced by the conditioned stimulus. 
    • Pavlov stated that classical conditioning occurred because the conditioned stimulus became a substitute for the unconditioned stimulus by being paired closely together.
      • The problem with this explanation is that it can’t explain why conditioning takes place when the conditioned stimulus occurs after the unconditioned stimulus. E.g. Backward conditioning.
  • Cognitive perspective: states that conditioning takes place due to expectancy of the unconditioned stimulus after the conditioned stimulus is presented. 
    • This is a modern theory.
  • Operant conditioning
    • Operant conditioning (instrumentalconditioning) refers to the learning of voluntary behaviour through the effects of pleasant and unpleasant consequences (rewards or punishment) that follow the behaviour. According to Skinner, behaviour is controlled by its own consequences.
    • Prior to the development of operant conditioning Thorndike theorized his law of effect.
    • Thorndike’s law of effect: states that if a response is followed by pleasurable consequences, it will tend to be repeated, and if followed by an unpleasant consequence, the response will not be repeated. Positive response increase same behaviour but negative response decrease the same behaviour. 
      • Operant conditioning agreed and disagreed with parts of the law of effect. 
    • (Note: B.F Skinner coined the term operant conditioning) 
    • According to operant conditioning there are two main types of consequences to a behavior/response: 
    • Reinforcement: the strengthening of the repetition of behaviourbecause of its consequence. 
      • Positive Reinforcement: the strengthening of a response (behaviour) by the addition or experience of a pleasurable consequence after that behaviour. 
      • Negative Reinforcement: the strengthening of a response (behaviour) by the removal or avoidance of an unpleasant stimulus after that behaviour.
    • Punishment: the weakening of the repetition of behaviourbecause of its consequence. 
      • Positive punishment: weakening of a response because of the addition or experiencing of an unpleasant consequences after that behaviour. 
      • Negative punishment: weakening of a response by the removal of pleasurable consequences after that behaviour.
      • Punishment is most effective
        • Immediately after the behaviour that needs to be weakened
        • When reasons for punishment is consistent 
        • When wrong behaviour is paired with the right behaviour; post the punishment.

Concepts of operant conditioning

  • Primary reinforcer: any reinforcer that occurs naturally especially if it meets a basic biological need. E.g. Hunger. 
  • Secondary reinforcer: any reinforcer that becomes reinforcing after being paired/associated with a primary reinforcer. E.g. money. 
  • Operant extinction: weakening and disappearance of a response because it is no longer reinforced. 
    • Resistance to extinction is the degree to which non reinforced responses persists. 
  • Shaping: involves using successive approximation towards the attainment of a final response.
    •  Successive approximations are small steps involved in shaping. 
  • Chaining: developing a sequence (chain) of responses by reinforcing each response in order to perform the next response. Usually starts with final response and works backwards 
  • Operant generalization: An operant response occurs to similar stimuli like the one that has been reinforced. 
  • Operant discrimination: operant response will occur to only one particular stimulus but not to the other, leading to stimulus control. 
  • Escape conditioning: learning of a response in order to terminate an aversive stimulus/consequence. Built on the concept of negative reinforcement. 
  • Avoidance conditioning: learns to avoid an aversive stimulus leading to stimulus control. Avoidance behaviour is self reinforcing because of the relief of avoidance itself. Propagated by Richard Solomon
    • Two theories are involved with respect to avoidance conditioning i.e. both classical conditioning and operant conditioning is involved. 
  • Schedules of reinforcement
  • Continuous reinforcement: every response is reinforced. 
  • Partial reinforcement: sometimes the responses are reinforced. Four types:
  • Ratio: takes place after a certain percentage/number of response have occurred. 
  • Interval: Reinforcement takes place after a certain amount of time interval has passed.
  • Fixed schedule: Reinforcement takes place after fixed amount of time or trails (response) 
  • Variable schedule: Reinforcement takes place after variable number of times or trails (response).
  • Together these types of partial reinforcement schedules form 4 major types of schedules of reinforcement.
  • Fixed ratio schedule – reinforcement after a fixed number of trails. Increase rates of responding and increased pausing after response. 
  • Variable ratio schedule – reinforcement after variable number of trails. Increase rates of responding, less pausing of response due resistance to extinction. E.g. Gambling.
  • Fixed interval schedule – the first response after a fixed time interval in reinforced. 
  • Variable interval schedule: first response after a variable time interval is reinforced.
  • For learning a new response continuous reinforcement is better than partial reinforcement. 
  • For delayed extinction of a response, partial reinforcement is better than continuous reinforcement. 
  • Insight learning: Kohler propagated Insight learning or cognitive learning. The research included the ape joining three sticks to reach a banana through a moment of insight.
  • Edward Tolman propagated expectancy model, latent learning and cognitive map. His research involved rats learning the different routes in a maze from where he developed the concepts of cognitive map and latent learning. 
    • Expectancy model: the presentation of the conditioned stimulus created an expectancy of the unconditioned stimulus which leads to the response.
    • Cognitive map: is mental representation of a spatial layout
    • Latent learning: it is the type of learning that takes place and is not shown until there is an incentive to perform
  • Martin Seligman propagated the concept of learned helplessness and positive psychology movement.
    • Learned helplessness: is a mental state where an individual bears aversive and painful stimuli and is mostly, unwilling to avoid those painful stimuli, even if they are “escapable,” because it has presumably learned over time that those stimuli cannot be controlled or avoided.
  • Observational learning
    • The type of learning which occurs when one learns by observing/ imitating the behaviour of others. 
    • Albert Bandura propagated thesocial cognitive theory – which is the type of learning that occurs when an individual observes the behaviour of others and then implements the same producing behavioural change in their own lives. His experiments included children observing the treatment of the bobo doll by experiment assistants and learning from their behaviour.
    • The four step process for observational learning are: 
      • Attention: paying attention to the behaviour that we want to model 
      • Retention: remembering the modeled behaviour 
      • Reproduction: practicing that modeled behaviour
      • Motivation: situations where that behaviour is required must exist. 
  • (Study Tip: ARe RepM)
    • Observational learning takes place in the following ways: 
    • Imitation: is copying the behaviour one observes
    • Modeling: is observing the behaviour that one wants to copy from another source who is then referred to as the model.
    • Self efficacy – an individual’s belief about their capability to produce desired outcomes. 
      • No single part of the brain controls learning. Hypothalamus and dopamine pathway are involved.

FIELDS OF PSYCHOLOGY

  • Psychology is the scientific study of behaviour and mental processes.
  • Science involves two types of research:
    • Basic Research – Quest for knowledge for its own sake. 
      • Exploratory
    • Applied Research – Designed to solve specific, practical behaviour.
  • Levels of Analysis
    • Biological – Behaviour and causes that can be examined at the biological level.
    • Psychological – Thoughts, feelings and motives.
    • Environmental – Surrounding stimulus
  • Psychology History- 
  • Structuralism
    • Wilhelm Wundt
    • Edward Titchener (Wundt’s student)
    • underlying structure that underlie all the things human do
    • power of the will (voluntarism)
    • Wundt’s Theory of Consciousness
      • break down the mind into categories and find relationships between these categories and final relationships between these categories
      • used introspection
        • sensation
        • images
        • affections
  • Functionalism
    • William James
    • use of consciousness and the mind
      • to study the functions of consciousness rather than its structure
  • Gestalt
  • Psychodynamic
    • Sigmund Freud
    • Psychoanalysis
  • Humanistic
  • Behaviourism
    • John B. Watson
    • Thorndike- Thorndike’s law
    • Ivan Pavlov– classical conditioning
    • B. F. Skinner- operant/instrumental conditioning
    • Bandura- social cognitive theory/ observation learning
  • Cognitive Revolution
    • Aaron Beck –  Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
    • Noam Chomsky, 
    • Albert Ellis- Rational Emotive Behavioural Therapy (REBT)

Motivation & Emotion

  • Motivation is a process that influences the direction, persistence, and vigour of goal-directed behaviour.
    • Early psychologists believed instincts motivated behaviour and later developed concepts such as extrinsic and intrinsic motivation 
    • Instinct
      • is an inherited, innate characteristic
      • failed as an explanation due to circular reasoning
    • Extrinsic motivation
      • external reward or avoid punishment
    • Intrinsic motivation
      • internal reward (happiness)
      • most powerful motivator
  • Homeostasis and Drive
    • Walter Canon (Homeostasis)
      • a state of internal balance (physiological)
    • Clark Hull (Drive)
      • Disruption to homeostasis produces drives.
      • Drives are states that motivate an organism to reduce the tension and regain equilibrium. To fulfill a need.
      • Primary drive – important for survival
      • Secondary drive – acquired through experience or conditioning

Theories of Motivation

  • Expectancy x Value Theory (Edward Tolman)
    • Goal-directed behaviour is dependent on
      • strength of a person’s expectations
      • value of the goal for the person
  • Psychodynamic
    • sexual energy
    • hidden aggressive impulses
    • dual instinct model
  • Humanistic approach (Abraham Maslow)
    • needs hierarchy (lower 3 needs are deficiency needs, top 2 are personal growth needs)
    • self-actualization is the most important need
    • fulfilling one’s potential 
    • may reach self-transcendence
  • Self Determination Theory (Deci and Ryan)
    • 3 needs
      • Autonomy: The ability to do what one wants to do
      • Competence: the need to master a particular behaviour 
      • Relatedness: the need to get along with peers and other people.
      •  
  • Sexual Motivation (pleasure, reproduction)
    • Physiology (William Masters and Virginia Johnson)
      • 4 stages (refractory period for males)
        • Excitement – arousal happens
        • Plateau – arousal continues till muscles can reach orgasm
        • Orgasm – semen
        • Resolution – decrease in arousal
  • (Study Tip: EPOR)
    • Hormones
      • Hypothalamusàpituitary glandsàgonadsà releases gonadotropins
        • secrete more androgens, testosterone, estrogen, and estradiol
      • Sex hormones organize the development of male and female characteristics
    • Sex determination/differentiation
      • X chromosomes present in female ovum, Y or X chromosome in male sperm
        • controlled by gonadal steroid hormone
        • By 6th week sex differentiation begins
      • Process:
        • all embryos have Wolffian Ducts and Mullerian Ducts
      • Wolffian Ducts
        • can form the male reproductive system
      • Mullerian Ducts
        • can form the female reproductive system
      • For males, the Y gene called SRY-gene generates biochemistry to develop male organ
        • gonads secrete the anti-Mullerian hormone, which degenerates Mullerian ducts
        • Wolffian ducts develop into vas deferens and seminal vesicles 
        • undifferentiated gonads develop into testes, prostate glands, and scrotum
      • For females, no Y gene or SRY-gene.
        • no anti-Mullerian hormone leads to degeneration of Wolffian ducts
        • Mullerian ducts form fallopian tubes, uterus, and vagina.
        • External genitals come between 9th and 12th week
    • Psychology of sex
      • desire 
      • stress, fatigue, and anger can cause arousal problems
    • Sexual orientation
      • maybe one continuum
      • maybe related to the 3 dimensions of
        • self-identity
        • sexual attraction
        • acquired sexual behaviour
  • Hunger Motivation
    • Insulin and glucagon’s are hormones that are secreted by the pancreas to control levels of fat, protein, and carbohydrates
    • Insulin
      • insulin reduces glucose, whereas glucagon increases glucose
      • insulin secretion increases right after food intake to reduce sugar and increase hunger
      • liver sends a signal for hunger after its stored nutrients begin to be used
      • stomach and intestinal distention are satiety signals
      • small intestine produces cholecystokinin (CCK) 
        • a peptide to send signals of satiety
      • Leptin, a hormone from fat cells, gets to the bloodstream, reaches the brain, decreases appetite and increases energy expenditure
        • long term
    • Brain and Hunger
      • Hypothalamus
      • 2 regions
        • Lateral hypothalamus – stimulation leads to increase in feeling of hunger.
          • damaging LH – no eating
        • Ventromedial hypothalamus – stimulation leads to reduction in feeling of hunger off
          •  damaging VH – continuous eating
      • Paraventricular nucleus (PVN)
        • short and long term signal influencing metabolic and digestive processes
      • Psychological aspects increasing or decreasing hunger
        • Availability of food
        • classical conditioning
        • genes
        • pleasure and good food
      • Anorexia and bulimia 
        • high level of serotonin, and leptin
    • Social motivation
      • Craig Hill – 4 reasons to be socially motivated
        • positive stimulation
        • receive emotional support
        • gain attention
        • permit social comparison – comparing belief with other people
      • Affiliation is different for different people.
        • May follow the homeostasis model
        • Need for affiliation is situation dependent
    • Need for affiliation (nAff) – friendly social interactions and relationships with others
      • need to want to be liked by others and held in high regard – good team players
    • Achievement motivation: David McClelland’s need for achievement – need to achieve a goal 
      • Works in two ways
        • Positive desire to succeed (PDTS)
          • Working hard in order to succeed
        • Negative desire to avoid failure (NDAF)
          • Working hard to not fail
          • can impair performance
      • High-need achievers: People high in PDTS and low in NDAF
      • Low-need achievers: People low in PDTS and low in NDAF 
      • When tasks are challenging, high-need achievers outshine low-need achievers
      • High-need achievers choose intermediate difficulty tasks
      • Low-need achievers choose either hard or easy
      • The person’s perception of outcome matters as well.
    • Achievement Goal Theory: focuses on the manner in which success is defined both by individuals and the achievement situation itself.
      • Individual level 
        • Mastery orientation – focus on personal improvement
        • Ego orientation – the goal is to outperform others
      • Situational level
        • Motivational climate – encourages either of the aforementioned two approaches to defining success
    • Need for power (nPow) – want power over other people, influence and make an impact on them.
    • Motivational conflict
    • Approach-Avoidance conflict (our general tendency is to look for pleasure, reward and avoid pain)
      • involves being attracted to and repelled by the same goal
      • grow stronger as we get closer to the goal
      • avoidance tendency increases faster
      • Approach-Approach conflict
        • two attractive alternatives and selecting one means losing the other
        • conflict highest if both have the same value
      • Avoidance-avoidance conflict
        • choose between two undesirable alternatives
      • 2 distinct systems: Jefferey Gray (BAS and BIS)
        • Behavioural Activation System (BAS)
          • activated for reward and positive need gratification
          • emotions of hope, elation and happiness
          • prefrontal left hemisphere
        • Behavioural Inhibition System (BIS)
          • activates when potential pain, punishment, non-reinforcement
          • emotions of fear, inhibition, escape, avoidance
          • limbic system, right frontal lobe
    • Arousal Approaches to Motivation
      • Stimulus motive – is unlearned/automatic and causes an increase in stimulation
      • Arousal theory suggests that there is an optimum amount of arousal for each individual, above and beyond which performance suffers
      • Moderate level of arousal leads to a better performance following the Yerkes-Dodson law or the inverted U-Shaped curve.
      • Sensation seekers – require more arousal. Need more complex sensory experiences
    • Incentive approaches to Motivation
      • Incentives attract and lure people into actions.
      • Behaviour is explained in terms of external stimulus and its rewards.

Emotions (Read: How Emotions Are Made: The Secret Life of the Brain)

  • Emotions are feelings (affective) states that involve physiological, cognitive and behaviour reactions.
  • Richard Lazarus – motivation and emotions are related because emotions are only felt when motives are frustrated, gratified or threatened
  • Adaptive functions of Emotions
    • fear and alarm arousal
    • love (intimate and long term relationships)
    • dictates other people and their behaviour
  • Features
    • triggered by external or internal eliciting stimuli
    • appraisal of stimuli (perceptions)
    • physiological response of bodies
    • expressive behaviour
  • Emotions and the Brain
    • Limbic system and cerebral cortex
    • Cognitive appraisal involves the cortex
    • Emotional regulation requires prefrontal cortex
  • Joseph LeDoux found that thalamus can relay incoming sensory stimulus in 2 ways:
    • High road towards cortex
    • Low road – survival mechanism 
      • directly to amygdala for a reaction (fear response)
  • Dopamine and endorphine – pleasurable
  • Serotonin and nonephinephrine – non-pleasurable
  • Hemisphere difference
    • Left hemisphere is more concerned with happy/positive emotions
    • Right hemisphere is more concerned with negative emotions
      • innate 
      • resting hemispherical dominance affects post-neural reaction to stimuli
    • Physiological + Brain
      • Autonomic Nervous System
        • Fight or flight (Sympathetic and Parasympathetic)
  • Lie detection
    • Polygraph measures
      • respiration, heart rate and skin conductance (sweat glands)
    • Behavioural component
      • expressive behaviour – observable
    • Fundamental emotional patterns – innate set of emotional rection
      • Facial expression
        • Paul Eleman, Wallaw Friesen (Facial Action Code System, FACS)
        • Better at understanding when situational cues are present
        • Women are better
    • We have better judgement of people in the same cultural group
    • Instrumental behaviour – are behaviours directed at achieving some emotion-relevant goal
    • Arousal and performance – inverted U following the Yerkes-Dodgson law
    • Complex task = low arousal

Theories of Emotion

  • James-Lange Somatic Theory
    • bodily reaction determine subjective emotion we experience
  • Cannon Bard
    • subjective experience of emotion and physiological are not causal but independent
    • cognition is not involved
  • The Role of Automatic Feedback – supports Cannon Bard
  • Facial Feedback hypothesis 
    • facial muscles to the brain play a big role in determining the nature and intensity of emotion
  • Two-factor theory (Richard Lazarus and Schalder)
    • how cognition and physiological responses interact
    • physical arousal and its intensity tell us how strongly we are feeling something then situational cues determine the labeling of the arousal.

Suggested Reading(s):

Introduction to Psychology

A Brief Introduction to Psychology

Personality Psychology

Personality Psychology: Domains of Knowledge about Human Nature

Summarizing Psychology

  1. I would absolutely recommend enrolling in the course. The content is organised and well-explained. They have covered entire domain included…