The view that knowledge originates in experience and that science should, therefore, rely on observation and experimentation.
An early school of psychology that used introspection to explore the structural elements of the human mind.
A school of psychology that focused on how our mental and behavioral processes function—how they enable us to adapt, survive, and flourish.
The study of behavior and thinking using the experimental method.
The view that psychology should be an objective science that studies behavior without reference to mental processes.
Historically significant perspective that emphasized the growth potential of healthy people and the individual’s potential for personal growth.
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The interdisciplinary study of the brain activity linked with cognition (including perception, thinking, memory, and language).
The science of behavior and mental processes.
The longstanding controversy over the relative contributions that genes and experience make to the development of psychological traits and behaviors.
The principle that, among the range of inherited trait variations, those contributing to reproduction and survival will most likely be passed on to succeeding generations.
Nurture works on what nature endows.
The scientific study of the measurement of human abilities, attitudes, and traits.
Pure science that aims to increase the scientific knowledge base.
The scientific study of physical, cognitive, and social change throughout the life span.
The study of how psychological processes affect and can enhance teaching and learning.
The study of an individual’s characteristic pattern of thinking, feeling, and acting.
The scientific study of how we think about, influence, and relate to one another.
Scientific study that aims to solve practical problems.
The application of psychological concepts and methods to optimizing human behavior in workplaces.
The tendency to believe, after learning an outcome, that one would have foreseen it.
Thinking that does not blindly accept arguments and conclusions. Rather, it examines assumptions, discerns hidden values, evaluates evidence, and assesses conclusions.
An explanation using an integrated set of principles that organizes observations and predicts behaviors or events.
A testable prediction, often implied by a theory.
A statement of the procedures used to define research variables.
Repeating the essence of a research study, usually with different participants in different situations, to see whether the basic finding extends to other participants and circumstances.
An observation technique in which one person is studied in depth in the hope of revealing universal principles.
A technique for ascertaining the self-reported attitudes or behaviors of a particular group.
All the cases in a group being studied.
A sample that fairly represents a population because each member has an equal chance of inclusion.
Observing and recording behavior in naturally occurring situations without trying to manipulate and control the situation.
A measure of the extent to which two factors vary together, and thus of how well either factor predicts the other.
A statistical index of the relationship between two things (from -1 to 1).
A graphed cluster of dots, each of which represents the values of two variables.
The perception of a relationship where none exists.
A research method in which an investigator manipulates one or more factors to observe the effect on some behavior or mental process.
Assigning participants to experimental and control groups by chance, thus minimizing preexisting differences between those assigned to the different groups.
An experimental procedure in which both the research participants and the research staff are ignorant about whether any one research participant is in the control or experimental group.
Experimental results caused by expectations alone.
In an experiment, the group that is exposed to the treatment, or one version of the independent variable.
In an experiment, the group that is not exposed to the treatment and serves to compare the experimental group’s results against.
The experimental factor that is manipulated and whose effect is being studied.
A factor other than the independent variable that might produce an effect in the experiment.
The outcome factor; the variable that may change in response to the manipulation of the independent variable.
The arithmetic average of a distribution.
Add the scores together then divide by the number of scores.
Add the scores together then divide by the number of scores.
The middle score in a distribution.
The difference between the highest and lowest scores in a distribution.
A computed measure of how much scores vary around the mean score.
√((Sum of (deviations)^2)/(Number of scores))
√((Sum of (deviations)^2)/(Number of scores))
Normal Curve (Bell Curve)
A symmetrical, bell-shaped curve that describes the distribution of many types of data, where most scores fall near the mean.
A statistical statement of how likely it is that an obtained result occurred by chance.
The enduring behaviors, ideas, attitudes, and traditions shared by a group of people and transmitted from one generation to the next.
An ethical principle that research participants be told enough to enable them to choose whether they wish to participate.
The postexperimental explanation of a study, including its purpose and any deceptions, to its participants.
A branch of psychology concerned with the links between biology and behavior.
A nerve cell (the basic building block of the nervous system).
Neurons that carry incoming information from the sensory receptors to the brain and spinal cord.
neurons that carry outgoing information from the brain and spinal cord to the muscles and glands.
Neurons within the brain and spinal cord that communicate internally and intervene between the sensory inputs and motor outputs.
The bushy, branching extensions of a neuron that receive messages and conduct impulses toward the cell body.
The extension of a neuron, ending in branching terminal fibers, through wich messages pass to other neurons or to muscles or glands.
A layer of fatty tissue segmentally encasing the axon fibers of many neurons, enabling vastly greater transmission speed of impulses.
A neural impulse; a brief electrical charge that travels down an axon.
The level of stimulation required to trigger a neural impulse.
The junction between the axon tip of the sending neuron and the dendrite or cell body of the receiving neuron.
The space between the presynaptic and postsynaptic neurons at the synapse.
Chemical messengers that cross the synaptic clefts between neurons.
A neurotransmitter’s reabsorption by the sending neuron.
Natural, opiatelike neurotransmitters linked to pain control and to pleasure.
Molecules similar enough to neurotransmitters that they bind to the neurotransmitters’ receptors and mimic their effects.
Molecules that bind to neurotransmitter receptors but block the neurotransmitters’ functioning.
The body’s speedy, electrochemical communication network.
Central Nervous System
The brain and spinal cord
Peripheral Nervous System
The sensory and motor neurons that connect the central nervous system to the rest of the body.
Bundled axons that form neural “cables” connecting the central nervous system with muscles, glands, and sense organs.
Somatic Nervous System
The division of the peripheral nervous system that controls the body’s skeletal muscles.
Autonomic Nervous System
The part of the peripheral nervous system that controls the lands and the muscles of the internal organs.
Sympathetic Nervous System
A division of the autonomic nervous system that arouses the body.
Parasympathetic Nervous System
A division of the autonomic nervous system that calms the body, conserving energy.
A simple, automatic response to a sensory stimulus.
The body’s slower chemical communication system that uses hormones to communicate.
Chemical messengers that are manufactured by the endocrine glands, travel through the bloodstream, and affect other tissues.
A pair of endocrine glands that sit just above the kidneys and secrete epinephrine and norepinephrine that help arouse the body in times of stress.
The endocrine system’s most influential gland, and is under the influence of the hypothalamus.
An amplified recording of thew aves of electrical activity that sweep across the brain’s surface.
Computed Tomography (CT) Scan
A series of X-ray photographs taken from different angles and combined by computer into a composite representation of a slice through the body.
Positron Emission Tomography (PET) Scan
A visual display of brain activity that detects where a radioactive form of glucose goes while the brain performs a given task.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
A technique that uses magnetic fields and radio waves to produce computer=generated images of soft tissue.
Functional MRI (fMRI)
A technique for revealing bloodflow and brain activity by comparing successive MRI scans.
The oldest part and central core of the brain, beginning where the spinal cord swells as it enters the skull. It is responsible for automatic survival functions.
The base of the brainstem; controls heartbeat and breathing.
A nerve network in the brainstem that plays an important role in controlling arousal.
The brain’s sensory switchboard, located on top of the brainstem; it directs messages to the cortex and transmits replies to the cerebellum and medulla.
The “little brain” at the rear of the brainstem; functions include processing sensory input and coordinating movement output and balance.
Doughnut-shaped neural system located below the cerebral hemispheres; associated with emotions and drives.
Amygdala, Hypothalamus, and Hippocampus.
Two neural clusters in the limbic system that are linked to emotion.
A neural structure lying below the thalamus that directs several maintenance activities (eating, drinking, body temperature), helps govern the endocrine system, and is linked to emotion and reward.
The intricate fabric of interconnected neural cells covering the cerebral hemispheres; the body’s ultimate control and information-processing center.
Glial cells (Glia)
Cells in the nervous system that support, nourish, and protect neurons.
The portion of the cerebral cortex lying just behind the forehead. It is involved in speaking and muscle movements and in making plans and judgments.
The portion of the cerebral cortex lying at the top of the head and toward the rear, and it receives sensory input for touch and body position.
The portion of the cerebral cortex lying a the back of the head, and it includes areas that receive information from the visual fields.
The portion of the cerebral cortex lying roughly above the ears, and it includes the auditory areas, each receiving information primarily from the opposite ear.
An area at the rear of the frontal lobes that controls voluntary movements.
Area at the front of the parietal lobes that registers and processes body touch and movement sensations.
Areas of the cerebral cortex that are not involved in primary motor or sensory functions but are involved in higher mental functions such as learning, remembering, thinking, and speaking.
Impairment of language.
Controls language expression.
Controls language reception and comprehension.
The brain’s ability to change by reorganizing after damage or by building new pathways based on experience.
The formation of new neurons.
THe large band of neural fibers connecting the two brain hemispheres and carrying messages between them.
A condition resulting from surgery where the subject’s brain hemispheres are isolated from one another by the severing of the corpus callosum.
Our awareness of ourselves and oure environment.
The interdisciplinary study of the brain activity linked with cognition.
The principle that information is often simultaneously processed on separate conscious and unconscious tracks.
The study of the relative power and limits of genetic and environmental influences on behavior.
Every non-genetic influence.
Threadlike structures made of DNA molecules that contain the genes.
A complex molecule containing the genetic information that makes up the chromosomes.
The biochemical units of heredity that make up the chromosomes. They are segments of DNA capable of synthesizing a protein.
The complete genetic instructions for making an organism.
Twins who develop from a single fertilized egg that splits in two.
Twins who develop from two separate fertilized eggs.
The proportion of variation among individuals that we can attribute to genes.
The interplay that occurs when the effect of one factor depends on another factor.
The subfield of biology that studies the molecular structure and functions of genes.
The study of the evolution of behavior and the mind, using principles of natural selection.
The process by which our sensory receptors and nervous system receive and represent stimulus energies from our environment.
The process of organizing and interpreting sensory information.
Analysis that begins with the sensory receptors and works up to the brain’s integration of sensory information.
Information processing guided by higher-level mental processes.
The focusing of conscious awareness on a particular stimulus.
Failing to see visible objects when our attention is directed elsewhere.
Failing to notice changes in the environment.
The study of relationships between the physical characteristics of stimuli and our psychological experience of them.
The minimum stimulation needed to detect a particular stimulus 50% of the time.
Signal Detection Theory
A theory predicting how and when we detect the presence of a faint stimulus amid background stimulation.
Below one’s absolute threshold for conscious awareness.
The activation of certain associations, thus predisposing one’s perception, memory, or response.
The minimum difference between two stimuli required for detection 50% of the time. We experience the difference threshold as the just noticeable difference.
The principle that, to be perceived as different, two stimuli must differ by a constant percentage.
Diminished sensitivity as a consequence of constant stimulation.
Conversion of one form of energy into another (in sensation, the conversion of stimulus energies into neural impulses).
The distance from the peak of one light or sound wave to the peak of the next.
The dimension of color that is determined by the wavelength of light
The amount of energy in a light or sound wave as determined by the wave’s amplitude (height). This we perceive as brightness or loudness.
The adjustable opening in the center of the eye through wich light enters.
A ring of muscle tissue that forms the colored portion of the eye around the pupil and controls the size of the pupil opening.
The transparent structure behind the pupil that changes shape to help focus images on the retina.
The process by which the eye’s lens changes shape to focus near or far objects on the retina.
The light-sensitive inner surface of the eye, containing the receptor rods and cones plus layers of neurons that begin the processing of visual information.
Retinal receptors that detect black, white, and gray, and are necessary for peripheral and twilight vision.
Retinal receptors that detect detail and color, function in well-lit places, and are concentrated in the fovea.
The central focal point in the retina, around which the eye’s cones cluster.
The point at which the optic nerve leaves the eye, creating a “blind” spot because no receptor cells are located there.
The nerve that carries neural impulses from the eye to the brain.
Cells in the retina that receive information from rods and cones. Cones have their own individual bipolar cells, while rods share one with other rods.
Cells in the retina that transmit information from bipolar cells to the optic nerve.
Nerve cells in the brain that respond to specific features of the stimulus, such as shape, angle, or movement.
The processing of many aspects of a problem simultaneously.
Young-Helmholtz Trichromatic Theory
The theory that the retina contains three different color receptors—one most sensitive to red, one to green, one to blue—which, when stimulated in combination, can produce the perception of any color.
The theory that opposing retinal processes (red-green, yellow-blue, white-black_ enable color vision.
The sense or act of hearing
The number of complete wavelengths that pass a point on a given time.
A tome’s experienced highness or lowness that depends on frequency.
The chamber between the eardrum and the cochlea containing three tiny bones that concentrate the vibrations of the eardrum on the cochlea’s oval window.
The bones in the middle ear. In order from eardrum to oval window they are: the malleus (hammer), incus (anvil), and stapes (stirrup).
The innermost part of the ear, containing the cochlea, semicircular canals, and vestibular sacs.
The outwardly visible part of the outer ear that funnels sound waves into the ear canal.
In hearing, the theory that links the pitch we hear with the place where the cochlea’s membrane is stimulated.
In hearing, the theory that links the pitch we hear with the rate of nerve impulses traveling up the auditory nerve.
Conductive Hearing Loss
Hearing loss caused by damage to the mechanical system that conducts sound waves to the cochlea.
Sensorineural Hearing Loss
Hearing loss caused by damage to the cochlea’s receptor cells or to the auditory nerves. This is also called nerve deafness.
A device for converting sounds into electrical signals and stimulating the auditory nerve through electrodes threaded into the cochlea.
The system for sensing the position and movement of individual body parts.
The sense of body movement and position, including the sense of balance.
The theory that the spinal cord contains a neurological “gate” that blocks pain signals or allows them to pass on the the brain.
The principle that one sense may influence another.
An organized whole.
The organization of the visual field into objects that stand out from their surroundings.
The perceptual tendency to organize stimuli into coherent groups. Proximity, Continuity, Connectedness, Similarity, and Closure.
The ability to see objects in three dimensions although the images that strike the retina are two-dimensional.
A laboratory device for testing depth perception in infants and young animals.
Depth cues that depend on the use of two eyes.
A binocular cue for perceiving depth where images from the retinas are compared to compute distance.
Depth cues available to either eye alone.
An illusion of movement created when two or more adjacent lights blink on and off in quick succession.
Perceiving objects as unchanging even as illumination and retinal images change.
Perceiving familiar objects as having consistent color, even if changing illumination alters the wave-lengths reflected by the object.
In vision, the ability to adjucts to an artificially displaced or even inverted visual field.
A menta predisposition to perceive one thing and not another.
The biological clock that completes a cycle every 24 hours and is regulated by light changes.
Rapid Eye Movement (REM) Sleep
A recurring sleep stage during which ivid dreams commonly occur.
REM sleep; the body is internally aroused and externally calm/paralyzed.
The relatively slow brain waves of a relaxed awake state.
Periodic, natural loss of consciousness as distinct from unconsciousness resulting from a coma, general anesthesia, or hibernation.
False sensory experiences.
The large, slow brain waves associated with deep sleep
Non-Rapid Eye Movement (NREM) Sleep
Encompasses all sleep stages except for REM sleep.
Recurring problems in falling or staying asleep.
A sleep disorder characterized by uncontrollable sleep attacks.
A sleep disorder characterized by temporary cessations of breathing during sleep and repeated momentary awakenings.
A sleep disorder that occurs in Stage 4 characterized by high arousal and an appearance of being terrified.
A sequence of images, emotions, and thoughts passing through a sleeping person’s mind.
According to Freud, the remembered story line of a dream.
According to Freud, the underlying meaning of a dream.
The tendency for REM sleep to increase following REM sleep deprivation.
A social interaction in which one person suggests to another that certain perceptions, feelings, thoughts, or behaviors will spontaneously occur.
A suggestion, made during a hypnosis session, to be carried out after the subject is no longer hypnotized.
A split in consciousness which allows some thoughts and behaviors to occur simultaneously with others.
A chemical substance that alters perceptions and moods.
The diminishing effect with regular use of the same dose of a drup.
The discomfort and distress that follow discontinuing the use of an addictive drug.
A physiological need for a drug.
A psychological need to use a drug.
Compulsive drug craving and use.
Drugs that reduce neural activity and slow body functions.
Drugs that depress the activity of the central nervous system.
Opium and its derivatives; they depress neural activity.
Drugs that excite neural activity and speed up bodily functions.
Drugs that stimulate neural activity.
A powerfully addictive drug that stimulates the central nervous system.
A synthetic stimulant and mild hallucinogen that produces euphoria and social intimacy.
Psychedelic drugs that distort perceptions and evoke sensory images without sensory input.
A powerful hallucinogenic drug known more commonly as acid.
An altered state of consciousness reported after a close brush with death.
The major active ingredient in marijuana.
An organism’s decreasing response to a stimulus with repeated exposure to it.
Learning that certain events occur together.
A type of learning in which one learns to link two or more stimuli and anticipate events.
The unlearned, naturally occurring response to the unconditioned stimulus.
A stimulus that unconditionally triggers a response.
The learned response to a previously neutral stimulus.
An originally irrelevant stimulus that, after association with an US, comes to trigger a conditioned response.
A researcher who discovered classical conditioning through his famous experiment with dogs.
The learning of an association.
When the CS is paired with a new neutral stimulus, creating a second CS.
The diminishing of a CR when an US does not follow a CS.
The reappearance, after a pause, of an extinguished conditioned response.
The tendency, once a response has been conditioned, for stimuli similar to the conditioned stimulus to elicit similar responses.
The learned ability to distinguish between a CS and stimuli that do not signal an US.
The hopelessness and passive resignation an animal or human learns when unable to avoid repeated aversive events.
Behavior that occurs as an automatic response to some stimulus.
A type of learning in which behavior is strengthened if followed b a reinforcer or diminished if followed by a punisher.
Behavior that operates on the environment.
Law of Effect
Thorndike’s principle that behaviors followed by favorable consequences become more likely.
A chamber containing a bar or key that an animal can manipulate to obtain a food or water reinforcer.
An operant conditioning principle in which reinforcers guide behavior toward closer and closer approximations of the desired behavior.
A stimulus that elicits a response after association with reinforcement.
Any event that strengthens the behavior it follows.
Increasing behaviors by presenting positive stimuli.
Increasing behaviors by removing negative stimuli.
An innately reinforcing stimulus.
A stimulus that gains its reinforcing power through its association with a primary reinforcer.
Reinforcing the desired response every time it occurs.
Reinforcing a response only part of the time.
A reinforcement schedule that reinforces a response only after a specified number of responses.
A reinforcement schedule that reinforces a response after an unpredictable number of responses.
A reinforcement schedule that reinforces a response after a specified amount of time, as long as the behavior has occurred.
A reinforcement schedule that reinforces a response after an unpredictable amount of time, as long as the behavior has occurred.
An event that decreases the behavior that it follows.
A mental representation of the layout of one’s environment.
Learning that occurs ut is not apparent until there is an incentive to demonstrate it.
A sudden and often novel realization of the solution to a problem.
A desire to perform a behavior for its own sake
A desire to perform a behavior to receive promised rewards or avoid threatened punishment.
Also called social learning, it is learning by observing others.
The process of observing and imitating a specific behavior.
Frontal lobe neurons that fire when performing certain actions or when observing another doing so.
He conducted an experiment on observational learning where the experimental group of children observed an adult abusing a doll. He found that the children who saw this violence mimicked the behavior they had seen.
B. F. Skinner
He did research on operational conditioning.
Positive, constructive, helpful behavior.
Negative, unhelpful behavior.
The processing of information into the memory system.
The retention of encoded information over time.
The process of getting information out of memory storage.
The immediate, very brief recording of sensory information in the memory system.
Activated memory that holds a few items briefly.
The relatively permanent and limitless storehouse of the memory system.
Focuses on conscious, active processing of incoming auditory and visual-spatial information and of information retrieved from long-term memory.
Unconscious encoding of incidental information, such as space, time, and frequency, and of well-learned information.
Encoding that requires attention and conscious effort.
The conscious repetition of information.
The tendency for distributed study or practice to yield better long-term retention.
Serial Position Effect
Our tendency to recall best the last and first items in a list.
The encoding of picture images
The encoding of sound, especially the sound of words.
The encoding of meaning, including the meaning of words.
Memory aids that use vivid imagery and organizational devices.
Organizing items into familiar, manageable units.
Momentary sensory memory of visual stimuli.
Momentary sensory memory of auditory stimuli.
The increase in a synapse’s firing potential after brief, rapid stimulation.
A clear memory of an emotionally significant moment or event.
Loss of memory.
Retention independent of conscious recollection.
Memory of facts and experiences taht one can consciously know and “declare.”
A neural center in the limbic system that helps process explicit memories for storage
Measure of memory in which the person must retrieve information learned earlier.
Measure of memory in which the person need only identify items previously learned.
Measure of memory that assesses the amount of time saved when learning material for a second time.
The eerie sense that one has experienced a new situation before.
The tendency to recall experiences that are consistent with one’s current good or bad mood.
The disruptive effect of prior learning on the recall of new information
The disruptive effect of new learning on the recall of old information
The basic defense mechanism that banishes from consciousness anxiety=arousing thoughts, feelings, and memories.
Incorporating misleading information into one’s memory of an event
Attributing to the wrong source an event we have experienced, heard about, read about, or imagined.
A methodical, logical rule or procedure that guarantees solving a particular problem.
A simple thinking strategy that often allows us to make judgments and solve problems efficiently.
The ability to produce novel and valuable ideas.
Tendency to search for information that supports our preconceptions and to ignore or distort contradictory evidence.
Inability to see a problem from a new perspective.
Tendency to approach a problem in one particular way.
The tendency to think of things only in terms of their usual functions.
Judging the likelihood of things in terms of how well they seem to represent particular prototypes.
Estimating the likelihood of events based on their availability in memory.
The tendency to be more confident than correct.
Clinging to one’s initial conceptions after the basis on which they were formed has been discredited.
An effortless, immediate, automatic feeling or thought, as contrasted with explicit, conscious reasoning.
The way an issue is posed.
Our spoken, written, or signed words and the ways we combine them to communicate meaning.
In language, the smallest distinctive sound unit.
In a language, the smallest unit that carries meaning.
In a language, a system of rules that enables us to communicate with and understand others.
The set of rules by which we derive meaning from morphemes, words, and sentences in a given language.
Rules for combining words into grammatically sensible sentences.
Beginning at about 4 months, the stage of speech development in which the infant spontaneously utters various sounds at first unrelated to the household language.
Stage in speech development from about age 1 to 2 during which a child speaks mostly in single words.
Beginning around age 2, the stage in speech development during which a chid speaks mostly two-word statements.
Early speech stage in which a child speaks like a telegram, using mostly nouns and verbs.
Whorf’s hypothesis that language determines the way we think.