An awareness of self in relation to other external and internal events.
Renee Descartes Theory
Dualism: The difference between mind and body.
The mind and body are two different things. The mind is a non-physical spiritual thing (our soul). The body is a physical fleshy structure (matter).
The Pineal Gland
Descartes thought that thoughts, feelings, sensations and other conscious experiences occurred here. The gland actually produces melatonin, the chemical that makes us go to sleep.
Our awareness of the world through our sensory system. Also called 'sentience.'
Immediate object of awareness in our experience.
The awareness of objects and events in the external world and of our own existence and mental experiences at any given moment.
Sensations, perceptions, thoughts, feelings and memories.
Dualism: The relationship between mind and body.
The mind controls matter.The mind and body interact to produce thoughts, feelings, sensations and other conscious experiences.
Order of states of awareness from total awareness to complete lack of awareness.
Focussed attention, ordinary wakefulness, day dreaming, meditation, hypnosis, sleep, anaesthetised, unconscious (coma).
Consciousness is these four things.
Subjective, selective, continuous and changing.
William James' Theory
Stream of consciousness. Consciousness is flowing, continuously moving and random with fleeting thoughts.
NWC stands for...
Normal Waking Consciousness
ASC stands for...
Altered State of Consciousness
Define Normal Waking Consciousness
A state of organised, meaningful and clear awareness of thoughts, memories and sensations. Familiar sense of time and place. Percieved as 'real.' The level of our awareness varies. Controlled processes are involved.
Altered State of Consciousness
A state that involves distortions of perception and cognition, becoming more or less receptive to external stimuli, heightened or reduced awareness, loss of sense of identity, distorted cognitive functioning, disorganised thoughts, illogical thinking, difficulty solving problems, difficulty remembering events, a disturbed sense of time, changes in emotional feeling, becoming emotionally numb and uncharacteristic responses.
A psychoactive depressant that changes our conscious awareness, perception or mood. It lessens inhibitions by depressing the activity of the brain centres responsible for judgement and self-control. Can cause euphoria, talkativeness and feelings of good humour and friendliness.
Content of consciousness
More easily controlled in NWC than in an ASC due to the ability to push thoughts from our mind in NWC.
Self-control and time limitations.
The ability to manage or direct emotions, desires, impulses and behaviours. Better in NWC than in an ASC.
The time we spend on a particular thought, feeling or sensation. Can be controlled in NWC more than in an ASC.
Focussing on specific stimuli and ignoring others.
Changes in self-control
The ability to maintain self-control can be increased or decreased during an ASC. E.g. stumbling, controlling/coordinating movements. Less able to control anger or affection.
May help some people to gain control over gambling. smoking etc.
Allows us to control our conscious thoughts and relax.
Voluntarily shifting our attention from external stimuli to internal thoughts and feelings. Students spend one third of waking hours daydreaming. Daydreaming often occurs when alone, nearly asleep, on public transport or doing routing and boring activities.
Why do we daydream?
To stay alert when there is insufficient external stimuli, to mentally try out different possible actions and to solve problems.
Rapid Eye Movement sleep. Also called paradoxical sleep because the body is relaxed while the brain is active.
Non Rapid Eye Movement sleep.
Purpose of sleep: Restorative theory
Sleep gives our body time to repair damaged cells, de-toxify and grow cells. NREM restores the body, REM restores the brain and allows consolidation of memory and maintenance of brain synapses. When ill we sleep for longer and when we lose sleep we are more likely to become ill.
Limitation of the restorative theory of sleep.
Less active people tend to sleep just as much as very active people.
Purpose of sleep: Survival/evolutionary/adaptive theory
Sleep allows an animal to remain inactive and not draw the attention of predators. Periods of inactivity evolved as a means of conserving energy.
Limitation of the evolutionary theory of sleep.
While asleep, animals are more vulnerable.
Purpose of sleep: Information consolidation theory
We sleep in order to process information that has been acquired during wakefulness.
Sleep cycles in a night.
4 to 5 cycles
Length of a sleep cycle
80 to 100 minutes
Light's effect on sleep.
As light fades, the pineal gland is stimulated and releases melatonin. Bright light does the opposite.
Brain waves of awakeness
Brain waves of stage 1 NREM sleep
Alpha, some theta
Brain waves of stage 2 NREM sleep
Theta, some delta. K complexes and sleep spindles.
Brain waves of stage 3 NREM sleep
Theta and delta
Brain waves of stage 4 NREM sleep
Brain waves of REM sleep
The drowsy time between being awake and being asleep. Slow rolling eye movements, images, flashes of colour. Duration is approx. 2 minutes.
Duration of stage 1 NREM sleep
5 to 10 minutes
Duration of stage 2 NREM sleep
Duration of stage 3 NREM sleep
30 minutes reducing to nil
Duration of stage 4 NREM sleep
30 minutes reducing to nil
Duration of REM sleep
A few minutes at the start of sleep, increasing throughout the night and up to one hour at the end of sleep. 20% of sleep time in an adult
Characteristics of NREM sleep
Less brain activity than NWC and REM sleep, four stages, decrease in blood pressure, heart rate, breathing and temperature throughout the stages. Decrease in brain wave frequency, increase in amplitude.
When the body jerks during sleep.
Sharp bursts in amplitude and lower frequency of brain waves. Occurs when we are disturbed in sleep.
Higher frequency brain waves.
Difference between night terrors and nightmares
Night terrors are not remembered after waking and nightmares are remembered after waking.
80% of dreams occur in REM sleep and 20% in NREM sleep.
When REM sleep is caught up the next night after being continuously woken during REM sleep the previous night.
Power napping duration
A 10 minute nap is as effective as a 30 minute nap. A 60 minute nap leads to sleep inertia, or sluggishness.
Sleep-wake cycle shift
Biopsychosocial factors combine during adolescence to shift the sleep onset time to an hour or two later. This leads to an accumulated sleep debt.
Accumulation of missed sleep leads to a sleep debt which must be caught up.
Sleep deprivation physical effects
Aches and pains, fatigue, micro-sleeps, hand tremors, drooping eyelids, difficulty focussing eyes, lack of energy and strength, slurred speech, increased sensitivity to pain, slower heart rate and respiratory rate and a drop in body temperature.
Sleep deprivation psychological effects
Lack of concentration, short attention span, irritability, moodiness, anxiety, lack of motivation, impaired memory processes, depression, delusions, paranoia, decline in ability to perform simple tasks and irrational and illogical thinking.
Partial sleep deprivation symptoms
Impairment of memory, illogical thinking, irrational thought, lapses in attention/concentration and hallucinations.
Total sleep deprivation symptoms
Irritability, irrationality, confusion, time/place disorientation, misperception, hallucinations, delusion, paranoia and problems maintaining attention. Also called sleep deprivation psychosis.
A brief, unintentional episode of loss of attention, blank stares, head snapping and prolonged eye closure that last from between 2 and 30 seconds.
Obtaining less sleep than that that is required. Performance in relatively more complex tasks is better in comparison to performance in simpler tasks after sleep deprivation.
The two main parts of the nervous system
Central nervous system and peripheral nervous system.
The two main parts of the central NS.
Brain and spinal cord.
The two main parts of the peripheral NS.
Somatic NS (body) and autonomic NS (organs).
The two main parts of autonomic NS.
Sympathetic NS (arousing) and parasympathetic NS (calming).
Spinal cord is...
Like a cable connecting the brain to the rest of the body.
12 nerves that leave the brain to serve the head and neck.
31 spinal nerves leave the spinal cord.
Nerves other than cranial and spinal...
Are part of the peripheral NS.
White matter in the spinal cord and covering axons. It acts like plastic covering on a wire, it prevents communication jumping across space to other nerves and resulting in unclear messages.
Grey matter that makes up the body of the neurons.
Affector neurons detect a stimulus, send a message or impulse to the connector neurons in the spine which synapses with an effector neuron which leads to muscle fibre. The muscle contracts and the reflex movement occurs. No brain action is required.
Sensory is affector, motor is effector.
Reflects off the spinal cord.
The two major functions of the spinal cord
Relay sensory messages from the body to the brain, relay movement messages from the brain to the body for movement.
Electroencephalograph. Detects, amplifies and records electrical activity of the brain (brain waves).
Electro-ocular gram. Measures eye movement by detecting, amplifying and recording electrical activity in the muscles that control the eyes.
Electrocardiograph. Measures heart rate by detecting, amplifying and recording electrical activity in the heart muscle.
Galvanic skin response. Measures emotional reactions and perspiration by detecting, amplifying and recording the electrical conductance of the skin.
Methods used to study sleep and levels of alertness
EEG, EOG, ECG, GSR, body temperature measurements, sleep laboratories, video monitoring and self reports.
Delayed sleep phase syndrome
A disorder of the biological clock that causes an individual to have trouble falling asleep and waking up because their body clock is out of time with what is expected of them due to work, school etc.
Cures or aids of delayed sleep phase syndrome
Ways to help with DSPS are time, bright light in the morning, psychological or psychiatric help and taking small doses of melatonin.