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31 terms

Chapter 7 (240)

executive attention
the kind of selective attention that typically acts on the contents of working memory and directs subsequent processing so as achieve some goal
executive processes
processes that modulate the operation of other processes and that are responsible for the coordination of mental activity so that a particular goal is achieved
closed head injury
injury caused by an external bump that does not pierce the skull
Phineas Gage
In 1848, a 3 foot long rod called a tamping rod flew through his skull, below the left cheekbone and exiting through the top of his skulll. Left him radically changed. He became irresponsible, impulsive, given to fits of temper and profanity
Dr. P
A former successful middle-aged surgeon who, after undergoing minor facial surgery, he lost some brain function after suffering from being deprived from oxygen. He no longer could juggle competing demands, couldn't plan towards a goal.
Frontal-lobe syndrome
Loss of focus, ability to plan ahead, and failed attention switching due to some sort of injury or illness
prefrontal cortex
the brain area involved is not the entire frontal lobe, but only the anterior part
frontal executive hypothesis
the idea that every executive process process is primarily mediated by the PFC. Widely accepted for a long time, and has fueled much research, but is overstated.
Wisconsin card sort task
Four stimulus cards are set in front of participant, each with a distinctive set of number, design, and color. Person must figure out what rule to sort by through the researcher, who then switches the rule without warning and tests how long it takes the person to change
Tower of Hanoi
Involves three pegs and three different-size disks. The goal is to move all three from one peg to another without putting a bigger one on top of a smaller one. All must be planned in head beforehand. Very difficult for those with damage to the dorsolateral PFC
executive dysfunction
now observed in children with learning disabilities and in adults who are markedly disorganized and failing in their careers
stimulus-response compatibility
a measure of the degree to which the assignment of the correct response to a stimulus is consonant with the way people would act naturally
attention controller
contains an indication of the current goal and adds activation to nodes relevant to that goal
conflict monitor
monitors the amount of conflict between the nodes at the response level, and as conflict increases, the monitor engages executive attention.
incongruent-eligible condition
the color names could also occur as ink colors, and hence are possible responses
incongruent-ineligible condition
the ink colors to be name are different than the color words to be ignored
automatic process
a task that can be initiated without intention, that operates very rapidly, and can operate without consciousness
awareness consciousness
a state in which you are aware of the stimuli and events presented to you
introspective consciousness
a state in which you are aware not only of external stimuli but also of internal representations and processes
switching attention
focus of attention is moved from one entity to another
switching cost
the time difference between response time to pure blocks versus alternating blocks
alternating blocks
sets with alternating tasks
pure blocks
sets with only one task
an analysis in which one pools the results of numerous studies, and tests statistically whether the studies are showing the same effects
clustering algorithm
a computer program that determines whether the peaks fall into clusters rather than being evenly distributed throughout the brain
response inhibition
the suppression of a partially prepared response
stop-signal delay
the length of time between question and stop signal in Logan (1983)
stop signal
a tone is sounded which directs participants to stop their processing on that trial and not answer the question
coding information about the order of events in working memory
the assessment of one's performance on a task while the task is being performed
error-related negativity
a negative deflection in the ERP wave that begins about the time of an error, often slightly before it, and peaks roughly 100 milliseconds after the error