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62 terms

Modules 11-14: Sensation and Perception

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rods
detect black, white or gray
cones
detect well-lit light or daylight conditions
optic nerve
carries information to the brain. Its made up of axons
blind spot
the optic nerve leaves the eye and no receptor cells are present
fovea
the retina's area of focus, where the cones cluster
sensation
a process where we detect physical energy from the environment and encode it as neural signals
perception
when we select, organize and interpret the sensations
bottom-up processing
using the sensory receptors to detect the lines, angles, and colors that form an image
top-down processing
to process information by constructing perceptions drawing on our experience and expectations
psychophysics
the study of the relationship between physical energy and our psychological experience
absolute thresholds
the minimum stimulation necessary to detect a particular light, sound, pressure, taste, or ordor 50% of the time
subliminal
below absolute threshold for conscious awareness
prime
the activation of certain associations, predisposing one's perception, memory or response
difference threshold
the minimum difference a person can detect between any two stimuli half the time
Weber's Law
for something to be perceived as different, as two stimuli must differ by a constant proportion-not a constant amount
sensory adaptation
our diminishing sensitivity to an unchanging stimulus
wavelength
the distance from one peak to the next
hue
the color we experience determined by the wavelengths
intensity
the amount of energy in light waves
accommodation
the process in which the lens changes shape to focus near or far objects on the retina
feature detectors
nerve cells that enter the brain responding to specific features of the stimulus such as shape, movement, or angle located in the occiptal lobe
parallel-processing
the processing of many aspects simultaneously in the brain
Young-helmholtz trichromatic (three color) theory
the retina has three types of color receptors, each especially sensitive to one of the three colors; red, green, and blue, and when these cones are combinationally stimulated, we see other colors
Opponent-Process Theory
the opposing retinal processes enable color vision. (red-green; yellow-blue; white-black)
Gesalt
an organized whole
Figure-ground
the organization of the visual field into objects (figures) that stand out from their surroundings (ground)
Grouping
organizing stimuli into coherent groups
proximity
group nearby figures together
similarity
we group similar figures together
continuity
to perceive smooth, continuous patterns rather than discontinuous ones
connectedness
perceiving two dots and a line as a single unit
closure
fill in gaps to create a complete, whole object
Depth Perception
estimating the distance between us and an object which we see in 3 dimensions
Visual Cliff
a laboratory device used to test depth perception in infants and young animals
Binocular Cues
depth cues that depend on the use of two eyes
Retinal Disparity
difference computed with the use of the eyes between two things
Monocular Cues
depth cues that are available to either eye
Relative Height
perceive objects higher in our field of vision as farther away
Relative Motion
as we move, objects that are stable appear to move
Relative Size
if we assume objects are similar in size, the one that casts the smaller retinal image is farther away
Interposition
if one object partially blocks our view of another we perceive it as closer.
Light and Shadow
nearby objects reflect more light to our eyes
Perceptual Constancy
perceiving objects as unchanging even as illumination and retinal images change
color constancy
perceiving familiar objects as having constant color, even if changing illumination alters the wavelengths reflected by the object
perceptual adaptation
invision to adjust to an artificially displaced or even inverted visual field
perceptual set
mental predisposition to perceive one thing and not another
Extrasensory Perception
the controversial claim that perception can occur apart from sensory input
Telepathy
mind-to-mind communication
Clairvoyance
perceiving remote events
Precognition
perceiving future events
Psychokinesis
mind over matter {ex: levitating a table}
Parapsychology
the study of ESP and psychokinesis
audition
our hearing
frequency
the number of complete wavelengths that pass a point in a given time
pitch
a tone's experienced highness or lowness {depends on frequency}
middle ear
the chamber between the ear drum and the cochlea containing three tiny bones (hammer, anvil, and stirrup) that concentrate the vibrations of the eardrum on the cochlea's oval window
cochlea
a coiled, bony fluid-filled tube in the inner ear through which sound waves trigger nerve impulses
inner ear
the innermost part of the ear, containing the cochlea, semicircular canals, and vestibular sacs
gate-control theory
theory that the spinal cord contains a neurological "gate" that blocks pain signals or allows them to pass on to the brain; the spinal cord nerve fibers conduct most of the pain signals
sensory interaction
the principle that one sense may influence another {the smell of food influences its taste}
kinesthesis
the system for sensing the position and movement of individual body parts
vestibular sense
the sense of body movement and position, including the sense of balance