Psychology: Sensory and Perception
relationship between neurons and sensor and perception
Terms in this set (67)
the process by which stimulation of a sensory receptor produces neural impulses that the brain interprets as a sound, a visual image, an odor, a taste, a pain or other sensory image. Sensation represents the first series of steps in processing of incoming information.
a process that makes sensory patterns meaningful. It is perception that makes these words meaningful rather than just a string of visual patterns. To make this happen, perception draws heavily on memory, motivation, emotion and other psychological processes.
transformation of one form of information into another- especially the transformation of stimulus information into nerve signals by the sense organs. As a result of transduction,t he brain interprets the incoming light waves from a ripe tomato as red.
the amount of stimulation necessary for a stimulus to be detected. in practice, this means that th presence or absence of a stimulus is detected correctly half the time over many trials.
the smallest amount by which a stimulus can be changed and the difference be detected half the time
The concept that the size of a JND is proportional to the intensity of the stimulus; the JND is large when the stimulus intensity is high and small when the stimulus intensity is low.
Signal Detection Theory
explains how we detect "signals" consisting of stimulation affecting our eyes, ears, nose, skin and other sense organs. Signal detection theory says that sensation is a judgment the sensory system makes about incoming stimulation. Often it occurs outside of consciousness. In contrast to older theories from psychophysics, signal detection theory takes observer characteristics into account.
Loss of responsiveness in receptor cells after stimulation has remained unchanged for a while as when a swimmer becomes adapted to the temperature of the water
The thin light-sensitive layer at the back of the eyeball. The retina contains millions of photoreceptors and other nerve cells
Light-sensitive cells (neurons) in the retina that convert light energy to neural impulse. The photoreceptors are as far as light gets into the visual system
Photoreceptors in the retina that are especially sensitive to dim light but not to colors. Strange as if may seen, they are rod-shaped
Photoreceptors in the retina that are especially sensitive to colors but not to dim light. You may have guessed that the cones are cone-shaped
the tiny area of sharpest vision in the retina
the bundle of neurons that carries visual information from the retina to the brain
the point where the optic nerve exists the eye and where there are no photoreceptors. Any stimulus that falls on this area cannot be seen.
a psychological sensation caused by the intensity (amplitude) of light waves
Also called hue. Color is not a property of things in the external world. Rather, its is a psychological sensation created in the brain from information obtained by the eyes from the wavelengths of visible light.
The entire range of electromagnetic energy, including radio waves, X-rays, microwaves, and visible light
The tiny part of the electromagnetic spectrum to which our eyes are sensitive. The visible spectrum of other creatures may be slightly different from our own.
The idea that colors are sensed by three different ypes of cones sensitive to light in the red, blue, and green wavelengths. The trichromatic (three-color) theory explains the ear lies stage of color sensation. In honor of its originators, its is sometimes called the Young-Helmholtz theory.
The idea that cells in the visual system process colors in complementary pairs, such as red or green or as yellow or blue. The opponent-process theory explains color sensation from the bipolar cells onward in the visual.
Sensations that linger after the stimulus is removed. Most visuals afterimages are negative afterimages, which appear in reversed colors.
the number of cycles completed by a wave in a second
the physical strength of a wave. This shown on graphs as the height of the wave
The primary organ of hearing; a coiled tube in the inner ear, where sound waves are transduced into nerve messages.
A thin strip of tissue sensitive to vibrations in the cochlea. The basilar membrane contains hair cells connected to neurons. When a sound wave causes the hair cells to vibrate, the associated neurons become excited. As a result, the sound waves are converted (transducer) into nerve activity.
A sensory characteristic of sound produced by the frequency of the sound wave.
A sensory characteristic of sound produced by the amplitude (intensity) of the sound wave.
The quality of a sound wave that derives from the wave's complexity (combination of pure tones- Timbre comes front he Greek word for "drum" as does the term tympanic membrane or eardrum)
The sense of body orientation with respect to gravity. The vestibular sense is closely associated with the inner ear and, in fact, is carried to the brain on a branch of the auditory nerve.
The sense of body position and movement of body parts relative to each other (also called kinesthesis)
Chemical signals released by organisms to communicate with other members of their species. Pheromones are often used by animals as sexual attractants. It is unclear whether or not humans employ pheromones.
the sense of smell
The sense of taste, from the same word root as "gusto" also called the gustatory sense.
Sensory systems for processing touch, warmth, cold, texture and pain
The mixing of sensations across sensory modalities, as in tasting shapes or seeing colors associated with numbers
An explanation for pain control that proposes we have a neural "Gate" that can, under some circumstances, block incoming pain signals.
Substance that appears to be a drug but is not. Placebos are often referred to as "Sugar pills" because they might contain only sugar rather than a real drug.
A response to a placebo (a fake drug) caused by the belief that it is a real drug.
The meaningful product of perception- often an image that has been associated with concepts, memories of events, emotions and motives.
A neural pathway, projecting from the primary visual cortex to the temporal lobe, which involves identifying objects.
A neural pathway that projects visual information to the parietal lobe; responsible for locating objects in space.
The ability to locate objects despite damage tot he visual system making it impossible for a person consciously to see and identifying objects. Blindsight is thought to involve unconscious visual processing in the where pathway.
Cells in the cortex that specialize in extracting certain features of a stimulus.
Refers to the process used by the brain to combine (or "bind") the results of many sensory operations into a single percept. This occurs for example, when sensation sod color, shape, boundary, and texture are combined to produce the percept of a person's face. No one knows exactly how their brain does this. Thus, the binding problem is one of the major unsolved mysteries in psychology.
Perceptual analysis that emphasizes the perceiver's expectations, concept, memories and other cognitive factors, rather than being driven by the characteristics of the stimulus. "Top" refers to a mental set in the brain- which stands at the "Top" of the perceptual processing system
Perceptual analysis that emphasizes characteristic of the stimulus rather than our concepts and expectations. "Bottom" refers to the stimulus, which occurs at step one of perceptual processing.
the ability to recognize the same object as remaining "constant" under different conditions such as changes in illumination, distance, or location.
in attentional blindness
A failure to notice changes occurring in one's visual field, apparently caused by narrowing the focus of one's attention
A perceptual failure to notice that a visual scene has changed from the way it had appeared previously. Unlike in attentional blindness, change blindness requires comparing a current scene to one from the past, stored in memory.
You have experienced an illusion when you have a demonstrably incorrect perception of a stimulus pattern, especially one that also fools others who are observing the same stimulus. (If no one else sees if the way you do, you could be having a hallucination.)
Images that can be interpreted in more than one way. There is no "right" way to see an ambiguous figure.
From a German word that means "Whole" or "form" or "configuration" The Gestalt psychology's believed that much of perception is shaped by innate factors built into the brain
The part of a pattern that commands attention. The figure stands out against the ground
The part of a pattern that does not command attention; the background
The Gestalt principle that identifies the tendency to fill in gaps in figures and to see incomplete figures as complete.
Laws of perceptual grouping
The Gestalt principles of similarity, proximity, continuity, and common fate. These "laws" suggest how our brains prefer to group stimulus elements together to form a percept (Gestalt)
Law of similarity
The Gestalt principle that we tend to group similar objects together in our perceptions
Law of proximity
The Gestalt principle that we tend to group objects together when they are near each other. Proximity means "nearness"
Law of continuity
The Gestalt principle that we prefer perceptions of connected and continuous figures to disconnected and disjointed ones.
Law of common fate
The Gestalt principle that we tend to group similar objects together that share a common motion or destination.
Law of Pragnanz
The most general Gestalt principle, which states that the simples organization, requires the least cognitive effort, will emerge as the figure Pragnanz shares a common root with pregnant, and so it carries the idea of a "fully developed figure". That is, our perceptual system prefers to see a fully developed Gestalt, such as a complete circle- as opposed to a broken circle.
The view that perception is primarily shaped by learning (or experience), rather than by innate factors.
Readiness to detect a particular stimulus in a given context- as when a person who is afraid interprets an unfamiliar sound as a threat.
Information taken in by both eyes that aids in depth perception, including binocular convergence and retinal disparity.
Information about depth that relies on the input of just one eye- includes relative size, light and shadow, interposition, relative motion, and atmospheric perspective.