Psychology- Memory and biology

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action potential

A brief electrical charge that travels down the axon of a neuron


A drug that mimics the effects of a particular neurotransmitter or blocks its reuptake


the extension of a neuron that carries messages away from the cell body


The chemical messengers released into the spatial junctions between neurons


receive incoming signals from other neurons

endocrine system consists of a set of


limbic system

drug cravings are likely in the reward centers of this system

corpus callosum

wide band of neural fibers that transmits information between the cerebral hemispheres.

The occipital lobes are to ________ as the temporal lobes are to ________.

seeing; hearing

After suffering an accidental brain injury, Kira has difficulty walking in a smooth and coordinated manner. It is most probable that she has suffered damage to her:



The limbic system structure that regulates hunger

frontal lobes

cerebral cortex is most directly involved in making plans and formulating moral judgments

Following massive damage to his frontal lobes, Phineas Gage was most strikingly debilitated by


The _______ hemisphere typically excels in making subtle linguistic inferences and the _______ hemisphere typically excels in making quick, literal interpretations of language.

right; left

sensory memory

Storing an exact copy of incoming information for a few seconds; the first stage of memory

iconic memory

A fleeting mental image or visual representation (ex. lightening)

echoic memory

After a sound is heard, a brief continuation of the sound in the auditory system (ex. When your attention returns to class)

working memory

A newer understanding of short-term memory that involves conscious, active processing of incoming auditory and visual-spatial information, and of information retrieved from long-term memory

serial position effect

our tendency to
recall best the last and first items in a list, further illustrates the benefits of rehearsal.

explicit memory

refers to facts and experiences that one can consciously know and declare


involves learning an action while the individual does not know she knows.


the level of stimulation required to trigger a neural impulse.


the junction between the axon tip of the sending neuron and the dendrite or cell body of the receiving neuron. The tiny gap at this junction is called the synaptic gap or cleft.


(chemicals) released from the sending neuron travel across the synapse and bind to receptor sites on the receiving neuron, thereby influencing it to generate an action potential.

Somatic Nervous System

The division of the peripheral nervous system that controls the body's skeletal muscles. Intentional / conscious movements.

Autonomic Nervous System

Part of the PNS that controls the glands and other internal organs - heartbeat, digestion. Automatic / unconscious.

Adoptive parents are least likely to influence the ________ of their adopted children.

personality traits

Compared to women, men are ________ likely to feel comfortable about having casual sex with different partners and ________ likely to cite affection as a reason for their first sexual intercourse.

more; less

Intense and reactive infants become unusually anxious and aroused when facing new or strange situations. This best illustrates the importance of:


It has been suggested that men in all cultures tend to marry women younger than themselves because men are genetically predisposed to seek female features associated with youthful fertility. This suggestion best illustrates:

evolutionary perspective

At a social gathering, Latin Americans may behave in a manner that North Americans consider intrusive and overly expressive. This best illustrates the importance of being sensitive to differing:


Concepts of maleness and femaleness that influence our perceptions are called gender:


Less than 10 percent of children's personality differences are attributable to the various ________ shared by family members.


The acquisition of a traditional masculine or feminine role is called:


Teens who smoke typically have friends who smoke. In order to avoid overestimating the impact of peer pressure on teens' smoking habits, it would make the most sense to consider the impact of:

smoking preferences on friendship choices.

The expectations that men initiate dates and that women select wedding gifts best illustrate aspects of:

gender roles

A measure of your memory in which you need to pick the correctly learned answer from a displayed list of options is known as a measure of:


Many people can easily recall exactly what they were doing when they heard the news of the 9/11 terrorist tragedy. This best illustrates ________ memory.


When you have to make a long-distance call, dialing an unfamiliar area code plus a seven-digit number, you are likely to have trouble retaining the just-looked-up number. This best illustrates the limited capacity of ________ memory.


After his last drinking spree, Fakim hid a half-empty liquor bottle. He couldn't remember where he hid it until he started drinking again. Fakim's pattern of recall best illustrates:

state-dependent memory.


the organization of information into meaningful units.

meaningful encoding

In order to remember the information presented in her psychology textbook, Susan often relates it to her own life experiences. Susan's strategy is an effective memory aid because it facilitates:

Jamille performs better on foreign language vocabulary tests if she studies the material 15 minutes every day for 8 days than if she crams for 2 hours the night before the test. This illustrates what is known as:

the spacing effect

After learning the combination for his new locker at school, Milton is unable to remember the combination for his year-old bicycle lock. Milton is experiencing the effects of:

retroactive interference.

udy is embarrassed because she suddenly cannot remember a friend's name. Judy's poor memory most likely results from a failure in:





memory storage


hunger, thirst, sex


coordination and balance

corpus callosum

the large band of neural fibers connecting the two brain hemispheres and carrying messages between them

Central Nervous System (CNS):

the brain and spinal cord.

Peripheral Nervous System (PNS):

the sensory and motor neurons that connect the central nervous system (CNS) to the rest of the body.

Somatic Nervous System

The division of the peripheral nervous system that controls the body's skeletal muscles. Intentional / conscious movements.

Autonomic Nervous System

Part of the PNS that controls the glands and other internal organs - heartbeat, digestion. Automatic / unconscious.

Somatic Nervous System

Division of the ANS that arouses the body, mobilizing its energy in stressful situations

Autonomic Nervous System:

Part of the PNS that controls the glands and other internal organs - heartbeat, digestion. Automatic / unconscious.

proactive interference

the disruptive effect of prior learning on the recall of new information


a measure of memory in which the person need only identify times previously learned, as one a multiple choice test.


a memory measure that assesses the amount of time saved when learning material for a second time


a memory measure that assesses the amount time saved when learning material for a second time


the activation, often unconsciously of particular associations in memory

retroactive interference

the disruptive effect of new learning on the recall of old information

mood congruent memory

the tendency to recall experiences that are consistent with one's current good or bad mood

sympathetic nervous system

the division of the automatic nervous system that arouses the body, mobilizing its energy in stressful situations

parasympathetic nervous system

the division of the autonomic nervous system that calms the body conserving its energy

endocrine system

hormones and glands- adrenal gland and pituitary glad-important.

parietal lobes

the portion of the cerebral cortex lying at the top of the head and toward the rear; recieves sensory input for touch and body position

motor cortex

the area at the rear of the frontal lobes that controls voluntary movements

sensory cortex

the area at the fron of the parietal lobes that registers and processes body touch and movement sensations

natural selection three requirements

variation, selection pressure, transmission DNA

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