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198 terms


Thinking (cognition)
mental activity that goes on in the brain when a person is organizing and attempting to understand information and communicating information to others
What does thinking include?
Memory, verbal "stream of consciousness," images and words in a person's mind
What is thinking?
It is being aware of information, making decisions on it, comparing it to other information and using it to solve problems
Mental Images
Tool used in the thinking process; mental representations that stand for objects or events and have a picture-like quality (visual image or mental picture of a word)
How long does it take to remember smaller things versus bigger things?
Bigger things take longer to remember as compared to small things because bigger things have more aspects to it
What is an example of imagery?
Asking someone to report all of the windows that they have in their house
How long does it take to rotate an image in our head?
As long as it would take us to rotate the image in our hands
How do we use mental imagery daily?
Used to find where we parked our car, creating day dreams, getting around town with our learned "mental maps"
How is creating a mental image different than seeing an actual image in terms of the brain?
An image is perceived in the "minds eye" when areas of the cortex with stored knowledge sends information to the visual cortex
What does a PET scan show in mental imagery?
This shows the role of the visual cortex
What does the fMRI show in mental imagery?
This shows the overlap between visual imagery and visual perception
The ideas that represent a class or a category of objects, events, or activities
Idea of concepts
Two people can talk about birds even if two people aren't thinking of the same type of bird
What do concepts allow for?
They allow for the identification of new objects that may fit a certain concept
Superordinate Concept
The most general form of a type of concept; refers to the highest status/standing
Example of a superordinate concept
Animal or fruit
Example of Basic Level Type
Dog or an apple
Basic Level Type
An example of a type of concept around which other similar concepts are organized
Subordinate Concept
The most specific category of a concept; refers to the lowest in status/standing
Example of a subordinate concept
Cockapoo or a granny smith apple
Formal Concept
Concepts that are defined by specific rules or features
Example of formal concepts
Triangles, squares, conditioned stimuli
Natural Concepts
Concepts people form as a result of their experiences in the real word; "fuzzy"
Where are formal concepts learned?
Learned in school
Where are natural concepts learned?
Learned in everyday life
Example of Natural concepts
Vehicle-bobsled; fruit - tomato
An example of a concept that closely matches the defining characteristics of the concept
Example of a prototype
US - apple; Tropical area - coconuts or papayas
How do prototypes develop?
They develop according to the exposure a person has to objects in that category; also effected by cultures
What are the most typical prototypes or the least typical prototypes?
Most typical prototypes is the thinking that comes quickest to the brain; the least typical is the thinking that comes slowest; when thinking of a fruit the most would be an orange and the least would be a tomato or an olive
Mental generalizations about objects, places, events, and people
Example of Schemas
Library has books and shelves
Schemas that include a familiar sequence of activities
Example of a Script
The idea of going to a movie includes travel, purchase of the ticket, purchase of snacks, finding a seat, enjoyment of the movie
Problem Solving
Process of cognition that occurs when a goal must be reached by thinking and behaving in certain ways
Trial and Error (mechanical solution)
Problem-solving method in which one possible solution after another is tried until a successful one is found
Example of trial and error
Finding the correct password for an email after several tries
Very specific rote solution, step-by-step procedures for solving certain types of problems
Learned set of rules
What type of problem solving always results in a correct solution?
An educated guess based on prior experiences that helps narrow down the possible solutions for a problem; "rule of thumb"
Example of an algorithm
Mathematical formula, rubik's cube, computers
Example of Heuristics
When you are having trouble with format on word, you can either read entire manual or type "format" into the help box
What type of problem-solving is the quickest?
Heuristics, but they are not always accurate
Representative Heuristic
Assumption that any object (or person) sharing characteristics with the members of a particular category is also a member of that category
Availability Heuristic
Estimating the frequency or likelihood of an event based on how easy it is for us to recall information from memory or how easy it is for us to think of related examples
When is representative heuristic useful?
Useful with plants but not with humans
Means-end Analysis
Heuristic in which the difference between the starting situation and the goal is determined and then steps are taken to reduce that difference by various means or methods
Example of means-end analysis
Learning how to make cute wedding invitations by hand because the pre-made ones are too expensive by breaking the process down into subgoals
Who and what was the experiment done with availability heuristic and the results?
Tversky and Kahneman asked which appeared more: the letter K at the beginning or in the third letter of the word in a book; people thought the beginning of a word would contain more K but it is actually the third letter of the word
When the solution to a problem seems to come suddenly to the mind; "aha!" moment discussed by Kohler in Sultan's Chimpanzee experiment
What is thinking?
A complex process involving the use of mental imagery and various types of concepts to organize the events of daily life
What is problem solving?
A special type of thinking that involves the use of many tools, such as trial-and-error thinking, algorithms, and heuristics to solve different types of problems
Why do people have difficulties with solving problems?
Solutions to a problem remain just "out of reach" because the elements of the problem are not arranged properly or because people get stuck in certain ways of thinking that act as barriers to solving problems
Functional Fixedness
A block to problem solving that comes from thinking about an object in terms of only their typical functions; "fixed on the functions"
Example of Functional Fixedness
Looking for a screwdriver when you could use a dime because you see the dime only for its function as money
Mental set
The tendency for people to persist in using problem-solving patterns that have worked for them in the past; type of functional fixedness
Example of Mental Set
People draw in the lines when asked to connect the dots in two different ways
Confirmation Bias
The tendency to search for evidence that fits one's beliefs while ignoring any evidence that does not fit those beliefs
Example of confirmation bias
Believers in ESP tend to remember the few studies that support it and "forget" the cases that don't
The process of solving problems by combining ideas or behavior in new ways
Convergent Thinking
Type of thinking in which a problem is seen as having only one answer, and all lines of thinking will eventually lead to that single answer, using previous knowledge and logic
Example of convergent thinking
How are a pen and pencil similar? shape and use
Divergent Thinking
Type of thinking in which a person starts from one point and comes up with many different ideas or possibilities based on that point
Which person is a creative thinker, a divergent thinker or a convergent thinker?
A divergent thinker
Example of divergent thinker
What is a pencil used for? writing, poking holes, weapon
Why are divergent thinkers able to be more creative?
Divergent thinkers make links and connections at a level of consciousness just below alert awareness, so that ideas can flow freely without being censored by the higher mental processes; they are less prone to barriers of problem solving such as functional fixedness
What is a creative person (according to Csikszentmihalyi)?
1) have a broad range of knowledge about a lot of subjects and are good at using mental imagery
2) Aren't afraid to be different - they are more open to new experiences than many people, and they tend to have more vivid dreams and daydreams than others do
3) Value their independence
4) Often unconventional in their work, but no otherwise
The ability to learn from one's experience, acquire knowledge, and use resources effectively in adapting to new situations or solving problems
What is intelligence needed for?
Adaptation and survival
G Factor
The ability to reason and solve problems, or general intelligence
What measures the G factor?
IQ tests
Who founded the G factor?
Charles Spearman
S Factor
The ability to excel in certain areas, or specific intelligence
Who founded the S Factor?
Charles Spearman
Who proposed that there were 120 types of intelligence?
Gardner's Nine Intelligences
1) Verbal/Linguistic
2) Musical
3) Logical/Mathematical
4) Visual/Spatial
5) Movement
6) Interpersonal
7) Intrapersonal
8) Naturalist
9) Existentialist
Verbal/Linguistic Intelligence
One of Gardner's Nine Intelligences that deals with the ability to use language
Sample Occupation of Verbal/Linguistic Intelligence
Writers, speakers
Musical Intelligence
One of Gardner's Nine Intelligences that deals with the ability to compose and/or perform music
Sample Occupation of Musical Intelligence
Logical/Mathematical Intelligence
One of Gardner's Nine Intelligences that deals with the ability to think logically and to solve mathematical problems
Sample Occupation of Logical/Mathematical Intelligence
Scientist and Engineers
Visual/Spatial Intelligence
One of Gardner's Nine Intelligences that deals with the ability to understand how objects are oriented in space
Sample Occupation of Visual/Spatial Intelligence
Pilot, astronauts, artists, navigators
Movement Intelligence
One of Gardner's Nine Intelligences that deals with the ability to control one's body motions
Sample Occupation of Movement Intelligence
Dancers, athletes
Interpersonal Intelligence
One of Gardner's Nine Intelligences that deals with the sensitivity to others and understanding motivation of others
Sample Occupation of Interpersonal Intelligence
Psychologists, managers
Intrapersonal Intelligence
One of Gardner's Nine Intelligences that deals with the understanding of one's emotions and how they guide actions
Sample Occupation of Intrapersonal Intelligence
Various people-oriented careers
Naturalist Intelligence
One of Gardner's Nine Intelligences that deals with the ability to recognize the patterns found in nature
Sample Occupation of Naturalist Intelligence
Farmers, landscapers, biologists
Existentialist Intelligence
One of Gardner's Nine Intelligences that deals with the ability to see the "big picture" of the human world by asking questions about life, death, and the ultimate reality of human existence
Sample Occupation of Existentialist Intelligence
Various careers, philosophical thinkers
Triarchic Theory of Intelligence
Sternberg's theory that there are three kinds of intelligence: analytical, creative, and practical
Who created the Triarchic Theory of Intelligence?
Analytical Intelligence
One of the triarchic theories of intelligence; the ability to break down problems into component parts, or analysis, for problem solving; "book smarts"
How is analytical intelligence measured?
Measure by intelligence tests
Creative Intelligence
One of the triarchic theories of intelligence; the ability to deal with new and different concepts and to come up with new ways of solving problems; also refers to the ability to automatically process certain aspects of information, which frees up cognitive resources to deal with novelty
Which triarchic theory of intelligence is the same idea of divergent thinking?
Creative intelligence
Practical Intelligence
One of the triarchic theories of intelligence; the ability to use information to get along in life and become successful; "street smarts"
What can a person with practical intelligence do?
Tactful , can manipulate situations, and use the inside information to increase their odds of success
Experiment done with the triarchic theory of Intelligence
Analytical - runs statistical analysis on data
Creative - designs the experiment
Practical - gets funding for experiment from donors
What did Sternberg found in comparison between practical and analytical intelligence?
There is a low relationship between practical intelligence (success) and academic (analytical) intelligence
Who came up with a test that could distinguish between fast and slow learners as well as different age groups?
Binet and Theodore Simon
Who create the mental age?
Binet and Theodore Simon
Mental Age
Average age at which children could successfully answer a particular level of questions
Intelligence Quotient (IQ)
A number representing a measure of intelligence, resulting from the division of one's mental age by one's chronological age and then multiplying that quotient by 100
Chronological Age
Number of years since birth
Equation of IQ
MA/CA X 100 = IQ
Example of IQ
A 10 year old scores a mental age of 15. His IQ is 15/10 X 100 = 150
What does the IQ allow?
Allows testers to compare the intelligence levels of people of different age groups
How is the IQ used today?
To place people academically according to age-group comparison norms
Who adopted the IQ idea of William Stern?
Lewis Terman
Wechsler Tests
Tests designed for specific age groups that has a verbal and performance scale and an overall score of intelligence (like Stanford-Binet IQ)
What are the different Wechsler Tests and who are they desiged for?
WAIS-IV = Adults; WISC-IV = Children; WPPSI-IV = Preschool
What are the four specific cognitive domains in Wechsler Tests?
Verbal comprehension, perceptual reasoning, working memory, and processing speed
The tendency of a test to produce the same scores again and again each time it is given to the same people
When is a test unreliable?
When the tests don't produce the same results when the person has not changed
The degree to which a test actually measures what it is supposed to measure
Ecological Validity
The extent that an obtained score accurately reflects the intended skill or outcome in real-life situations
Example of Ecological Validity
To get a driver's license, you are tested on operating a vehicle
Can a test fail validity and still be reliable?
Yes, as long as the results are the same each time.
The process of giving the test to a large group of people that represents the kind of people for whom the test is designed
What is standardization require?
A random sample given under the same conditions
Scores from the standardized group
Normal Curve
Distribution in which the scores are the most frequent around the mean and become less and less frequent from the mean they occur at
What allows IQ scores to be more accurately measured?
The normal curve
Standard Deviation
Average variation of scores from the mean
Deviation IQ Scores
A type of intelligence measure that assumes that IQ is normally distributed around a mean of 100 with a standard deviation of about 15
Example of Deviation of IQ Scores
IQ score of 130 would be two standard deviations above the mean; 70 would be two below the mean
What are intelligence tests useful for?
They are useful for measuring intelligence but should not necessarily be assumed to be measures of all types of intelligent behavior
Cultural Bias
A term referring to the tendency of IQ tests to reflect, in language, dialect, and content, the culture of the person or persons who designed the test
How to we try to avoid cultural bias?
Attempt to make tests that are culturally fair
Culturally Fair
Don't create a disadvantage for people whose culture differs from that of the majority; employ nonverbal (to avoid verbal knowledge that might be culturally specific)
What do IQ tests do well to predict?
They do well to predict academic success for those at the higher and lower ends of the normal curve
How do neuropsychologists use IQ tests?
Use intelligence testing in diagnosis, tracking progress of individuals with disorders, and in monitoring recovery
What type of scores do geniuses have?
Above average scores
What type of scores do the intellectually delayed have?
They have IQ scores below the mean of the normal curve
Intellectual Disability
(formerly mental retardation); condition in which a person's behavioral and cognitive skills exist at an earlier developmental stage than the skills of others who are the same chronological age; may also referred to as developmentally delayed
What characteristics classify a person as intellectually delayed?
1) IQ score must be below 70 or two standard deviations below the mean of the normal curve
2) The person's adaptive behavior is severely below a level appropriate for the person's age
3) Must be present before the age of 18
Adaptive Behavior
Skills that allow people to live independently
Developmentally Delayed
Behavioral and cognitive skills exist at an earlier developmental stage than the skills of others who are the same chronological age
What percentage of the population is developmentally delayed?
About 3%
What are some causes for people being developmentally delayed?
Unhealthy exposure to environment, poor nutrition, lack of oxygen at birth, damage to fetus, diseases and accidents during childhood
Familial Retardation
A delay related to living in poverty conditions and one that usually produces relatively mild intellectual disability
Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
Results from exposing a developing embryo to alcohol
Fragile X Syndrome
Male has a defect gene on the X chromosome of the 23rd pair, leading to a deficiency in a protein needed for brain development
The 2% of the population failing on the upper end of the normal curve and typically possessing an IQ of 130 or above
IQ falls between 140 and 145
What did Freeman write? and what did it claim?
It claimed that futures depend on peers, life conditions, money; being gifted doesn't always lead to success
What was the experiment with Terman's "Termites?" what did it discover?
1528 children participated in longitudinal study; found that these children were well adjusted, leaders, earned academic degrees, eventually were wealthy, were above average in height, weight, and physical attractiveness; had a sense of self, were resistant to mental illness; one's with the highest IQs had some social and behavioral adjustment problems
Emotional Intelligence
The awareness of and ability to manage one's own emotions as well as the ability to be self-motivated, able to feel what others feel, and social skilled
Why aren't people with book smarts successful all the time?
They don't have emotional intelligence
Who was emotional intelligence introduced by? explained by?
Introduced by Salovey and Mayer; explained by Goleman
Who was emotional intelligence measured by? what did they determine?
Measured by Mayer and Geher; determined emotional intelligence is valid and may be related to general intelligence
What did Goleman propose about emotional intelligence?
Goleman proposed that emotional intelligence is a more powerful influence on success in life than more traditional views of intelligence
A system for combining symbols (such as words) so that an unlimited number of meaningful statements can be made for the purpose of communicating with others and representing a persons own internal mental activity
System of rules governing the structure and use of a language
The proportion of change in IQ within a population that is caused by hereditary factors
What do genes have to do with intelligence according to the twin studies?
The twin studies show a strong correlation between twins (about .86) but because the number isn't 1.0, intelligence has something to do with environment
Who published The Bell Curve and what did it claim? why was it proved wrong?
Herrnstein and Murray published the book; it claims that IQ is inherited; this is proved wrong because compared race to intelligence by IQ, they assumed that intelligence was influenced by genetics, they failed to understand that heritability only applies to differences within a group of people
Language Acquisition Device (LAD)
Chomsky believes humans have the ability to understand and produce language through this
What does the LAD include?
Morphology, phonemes, and pragmatics
Study of formation of words
Basic sounds of language
Practical social expectations and uses of language
A system of rules for combining words and phrases to form grammatically correct sentences
Example of syntax
"john kidnapped the boy" or "john, the kidnapped boy"
Are the smallest units of meaning within a language
Example of morphemes
playing = "play" and "ing"
The rules for determining the meaning of words and sentences
Example of semantic
"johnny hit the ball" and "the ball was hit by Johnny"
What are two different sentences that have the same semantic but a different syntax?
"johnny hit the ball" and "the ball was hit by Johnny"
The basic units of sound in a language
Example of Phoneme
The different sound that "a" makes
Aspects of language involving the practical ways of communicating with others, or the social "niceties" of language
Examples of pragmatics
Take turns in a conversation, use of gestures, the way of speaking to different people or for different reasons
Rhythm and emphasis to use when communicating with others
Collective Monologue
Preschool children spend a great deal of time talking to themselves even when playing with another child (egocentric)
What changes in children as they get older with the relation to language?
Collective monologue
What did Piaget theorize about language?
Piaget theorized that concepts preceded and aided the development of language; concepts become the "pegs" upon which words are "hung"
Idea of Piaget's theory
Children have the concept for "mother" before being able to say "mama"
What did Vygotsky theorize about language?
Vygotsky theorized that language actually helped develop concepts and that language could help the child learn to control behavior (social behavior)
Idea of Vygotsky's theory
"mama" was learned and then the elements of "mama-ness" - warm, soft, food, safety, and etc - could develop around that word
What did Vygotsky theorize about egocentric speech?
Egocentric speech is a way for children to form thoughts and control actions
Whose theory has more evidence backing their idea of language, Vygotsky or Piaget?
Linguistic Relativity Hypothesis
The theory that though processes and concepts are controlled by language
Who developed the Linguistic Relativity Hypothesis?
Developed by Edward Sapir and Whorf
Is there any evidence to support the Linguistic Relativity Hypothesis?
Cognitive Universalism
Theory that concepts are universal and influence the development of language rather than linguistic relativity
Who founded cognitive universalism?
What can language shape?
Language can shape our thoughts about space, time, color, and objects; this idea is supported and also critiqued
What can language influence?
Language can influence the perception of others ("computer geek" vs. "software engineer"); also influences problem solving, cognition, and memory
What did animal studies determine about language?
Animals can communicate (warning growl of an angry dog), use of language is still unsure because gestures are instinctive, there have been attempts for primates and dolphins to use sign language, but there is no conclusive evidence of syntax mastery
What did Kanzi the chimpanzee achieve with language?
She learned language up to a level of a 2-year-old, could recognize certain symbols, and pronounce four different words