Psychology Chapter 3 & 4

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Stroboscopic motion

apparent movement that results form flashing a series of still pictures in rapid succession, as in a motion picture

Non-REM (NREM) sleep

Non-rapid-eye-movement stages of sleep that alternate with rem stages during the sleep cycle

REM or paradoxical sleep

Sleep stage characterized by rapid-eye-movement and increased dreaming

Suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN)

A cluster of neurons in the hypothalamus that receives input from the retina regarding light and dark cycles and is involved in regulating the biological clock

Circadian rhythm

A regular biological rhythm with a period of approximately 24 hours

Altered states of consciousness

Mental states that differ noticeably from normal waking consciousness

Waking consciousness

Mental state that encompasses the thoughts, feelings, and perceptions that occur when we are awake and reasonably alert


Our awareness of various cognitive processes, such as sleeping, dreaming, concentrating and making decisions

Phi phenomenon

apparent movement caused by flashing lights in sequence as on theater marquees

Autokinetic illusion

the perception that a stationary object is actually moving

Binaural cues

cues to sound location that involve both ears working together

monaural cues

cues to sound locations that requires just one ear


A visual depth cue that comes from muscles controlling eye movement as the eyes turn inward to view nearby stimulus

Retinal disparity

binocular distance cue based on the difference between the images cast on the two retinas when both eyes are focused on the same object

Stereoscopic vision

Combination of two retinal images to give a 3D perceptual experience

Motion parallax

Monocular distance cue in which objects closer than the point of visual focus seem to move in the same direction as the viewer’s head


Monocular cue to distance and depth based on the fact that shadows often appear on the parts of objects that are more distant

Texture gradient

Monocular cue to distance and depth base on the fact that objects seen at greater distances appear to be smoother and less texturized


Monocular cue to distance and depth based on the fact that the higher on the horizontal plane an object is, the farther away it appears

Aerial perspective

Monocular cue to distance and depth based on the fact that more distant objects are likely to appear hazy and blurred

Linear perspective

monocular cue to distance and depth based on the fact that two parallel lines seem to come together at the horizon


Monocular distance cue in which one object, by partly blocking a second object is perceived as being closer

Binocular cues

Visual cues requiring the use of both eyes

Monocular cues

Visual cues requiring the use of one eye

Brightness constancy

The perception of brightness as the same, even though the amount of light reaching the retina changes

Color constancy

An inclination to perceive familiar objects as retaining their color despite changes in sensory information

Shape constancy

A tendency to see an object as the same shape no matter what angle it is viewed from

size constancy

The perception of an object as the same size regardless of the distance from which it is viewed

Perceptual constancy

A tendency to perceive objects as stable and unchanging despite changes in sensory stimulation


The brain’s interpretation of sensory information so as to give it meaning

Placebo effect

Pain relief that occurs when a person believes a pill or procedure will reduce pain. The actual cause of relief seems to come from endorphins

Biopsychosocial theory

theory that the interaction of biological, psychological and cultural factors influences the intensity and duration of pain

Gate-control theory

the theory that a neurological gate in the spinal cord controls the transmission of pain messages to the brain

Vestibular senses

The senses of equilibrium and body position in space

Kinesthetic senses

Senses of muscle movement, posture, and strain on muscles and joints


Any of the various methods of concentration, reflection, or focusing of thoughts undertaken to suppress the activity of the sympathetic nervous system

taste buds

Structures on the tongue that contain the receptor cells for taste


Chemicals that communicate information to other organisms through smell

Olfactory bulb

The smell center in the brain

volley principle

Refinement of frequency theory; it suggests that receptors in the ear fire in sequence, with one group responding, then a second, then a third, and so on, so that the complete pattern of firing corresponds to the frequency of the sound wave

frequency theory

theory that pitch is determined by the frequency with which hair cells in the cochlea fire

place theory

theory that pitch is determined by the location of greatest vibration on the basilar memebrane

Auditory nerve

The bundle of axons that carries signals from each ear to the brain

Organ of Corti

Structure on the surface of the basilar membrane that contains the receptor cells for hearing

Basilar membrane

Vibrating membrane in the cochlea of the inner ear; it contains sense receptors for sound


Part of inner ear containing fluid that vibrates, which in turn causes the basilar membrane to vibrate

Oval window

Membrane across the opening between the middle ear and inner ear that conducts vibrations to the cochlea


The quality or texture of sound; caused by overtones


Tones that result from sound waves that are multiples of the basic tone; primary determinant of timbre


Unit of measurement for the loudness of sound


The magnitude of a wave; in sound, the primary determinant of loudness


Auditory experience corresponding primarily to frequency of sound vibrations, resulting in higher or lower tone


Cycles per second; unit of measurement for the frequency of sound waves


The number of cycles per second in a wave; in sound, the primary determinant of pitch

Sound waves

Changes in pressure caused when molecules of air or fluid collide with one another and then move apart again


A psychological experience created by the brain in response to changes in air pressure that are received by the auditory system

Opponent- process theory

Theory of color vision that holds that three sets of color receptors (yellow-blue, red-green, black-white) respond to determine the color you experience

Trichromatic (three color theory)

the theory of color vision that holds that all color perception derives from three different color receptors in the retina (usually red, green, and blue receptors)

Subtractive color mixing

The process of mixing pigments, each of which absorbs some wavelengths of light and reflects others

Additive color mixing

The process of mixing lights of different wavelengths to create new hues


the nearness of a color to white as opposed to black


The vividness or richness of a hue


the aspects of color that correspond to names such as red, green, and blue

Feature detectors

Specialized brain cells that only respond to particular elements in the visual field such as movement or lines of specific orientation

Optic chiasm

the point near the base of the brain where some fibers in the optic nerve from each eye cross to the other side of the brain

Blind spot

the place on the retina where the axons of all ganglion cells leave the eye and where there are no receptors

Optic nerve

The bundle of axons of ganglion cells that carries neural messages from each eye to the brain

Ganglion cells

neurons that connect the bipolar cells in the eyes to the brain

Visual acuity

The ability to distinguish fine details visually

Bipolar cells

neurons that have only one axon and one dendrite; in the eye, these neurons connect the receptors on the retina to the ganglion cells


Receptor cells in the retina responsible for color vision


Receptor cells in the retina responsible for night vision and perception of brightness


The different energies represented in the electromagnetic spectrum


the area of the retina that is the center of the visual field


the lining of the eye containing receptor cells that are sensitive to light


the transparent part of the eye behind the pupil that focuses light onto the retina


the colored part of the eye that regulates the size of the pupil


A small opening in the iris through which light enters the eye


the transparent protective coating over the front part of the eye

Weber’s law

The principle that the just noticeable difference for any given sense is a constant fraction or proportion of the stimulation being judged

Difference threshold or just-noticeable-difference(jnd)

the smallest change in stimulation that can be detected 50% of the time


An adjustment of the senses to the level of stimulation they are receiving

Absolute threshold

The least amount of energy that can be detected as a stimulation 50% of the time


The conversion of physical energy into coded neural signals

Receptor cell

A specialized cell that responds to a particular type of energy


The experience of sensory stimulation


Sense experience that occurs after a visual stimulus has been removed

Light adaptation

Decreased sensitivity of rods and cones in bright light

Dark adaptation

increased sensitivity of rods and cones in darkness

sensation is to _____ as perception is to ______.

stimulation; interpretation

the ____ is reached when a person can detect a stimulus 50% of the time

absolute threshold

_____are receptor cells in the retina responsible for night vision and perceiving brightness, and ____ are receptor cells in the retina responsible for color vision


the ability of the eye to distinguish fine details is called_______.

visual acuity

Motion sickness arises in the _________.

vestibular organs

The process of mixing various pigments together to create different colors is called________.

subtractive color mixing

The psychological experience created by the brain in response to changes in air pressure that are perceived in the auditory system is known as ______.


Hertz is a unit of measurement of ______,

the frequency of a sound

A chemical that communicates information to other organisms through the sense of smell is called_________.

a pheromone

Flavor is_________.

A combination of taste and smell

The________ has the most numerous receptors.


Optical illusions result from distortion in __________.


you know a house is the same size whether you are standing right next to it or a mile away from it because of _________.

perceptual constancy

Our general method for dealing with the environment is known as ________.

cognitive style

Visual distance and depth cues that require the use of both eyes are called _______.

binocular cues

Placebo pills and acupuncture have been effective in reducing pain. The common element in these methods may be their ability to stimulate the _________.

production of endorphins

The phenomenon whereby items that continue a pattern or direction tend to be grouped together as a part of a pattern is ________.


The phenomenon in which we perceive movement in objects that are actually standing still is known as _______.

apparent movement

A person who suffers from tinnitus suffers from ____.

hearing a persistent sound, like screeching or ringing, from inside the head


usually happens to elderly; loss of smell; taste buds detect salty, bitter, sour, or sweet flavors

Daydreaming, meditation, intoxication, sleep and hypnosis are all types of _____.

altered states of consciousness

Our sleeping-waking cycle follows a ___________ rhythm.


people may be able to adjust their biological clocks to prevent jet lag by taking small amount of the hormone _____.


What is seen in REM sleep?

paralysis of body muscles period of REM sleep get longer as the night continues rapid eye movement arousal of brain activity

The low voltage waves produced during relaxed wakefulness or the twilight stage between waking and sleeping are called ______ waves.


In children and young adults periods of REM sleep get progressively _____ and periods of stage 4 sleep get progressively ______ throughout the night.

longer; shorter

Freud believed that sleep and dreams expressed ideas that were free from the _____.

conscious controls and moral rules

Alice’s strange adventures in Wonderland and Dorothy’s bizarre journey through the Land of Oz most probably occurred when they were in __________ sleep.


Albert is meditating. He is likely to experience each of the following________.

sense of timelessness sense of well-being feelings of total relaxation

an effective way to reduce sleep debt would be to?

take a nap during the day

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