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terms, definitions, old test questions


our awareness of ourselves and our environment

biological rhythms

periodic fluctuations in our bodies physiological states, including annual variations in appetite, 90-minute sleep cycles, the 28-day menstrual cycle, and circadian rhythms.

circadian rhythm

any regular bodily rhythm (body temperature and sleep-wakefulness) that follow a 24-hour cycle

REM sleep

sleep stage in which the brain and eyes are active, muscles are relaxed, and vivid dreaming occurs.
aka: paradoxical sleep

REM is an acronym for what?

rapid eye movement

alpha waves

slow brain waves characteristic of an awake, relaxed state.
occur in awake time into Stage 1 sleep
keyword: awake


natural, periodic, reversible loss of consciousness on which the body and mind depend on for healthy functioning


false sensory experiences that occur without any sensory stimulus

delta waves

large slow brain waves associated with deep sleep
keyword: "D"eep
occur in Stage 3/4 sleep


sleep disorder in which the person regularly has difficulty in falling or staying asleep


sleep disorder in which the victim suffers sudden, uncontrollable sleep attacks, often characterized by entry directly into REM sleep

sleep apnea

sleep disorder in which the person ceases breaking while asleep, briefly arouses to gasp for air, falls back asleep, and repeats this cycle throughout the night.

night terrors

person experiences episodes of high arousal with apparent terror. usually occur during stage 4 sleep.


vivid sequences of images, emotions, and thoughts, the most vivid of which occur during REM sleep.

manifest content

remembered story line. obvious.

latent content

underlying but censored meaning of a dream. he mains hidden until its symbolism is interpreted

REM rebound

tendency for REM sleep to increase following REM sleep deprivation


social interaction in which one person (hypnotist) suggests to another (the subject) that certain perceptions, feelings, thoughts, or behaviors will spontaneously occur

posthypnotic suggestion

suggestion made during a hypnosis session that is to be carried out when the subject is no longer hypnotized


split between different levels of consciousness, allowing a person to divide attention between two or more thoughts

psychoactive drugs

chemical substances that alter mood and perception. they work by affecting or mimicking the activity of neurotransmitters.
includes: stimulants, depressants, and hallucinogens


diminishing of a psychoactive drug's effect that occurs with repeated use, requiring progressively larger doses in order to produce the same effect


refers to the discomfort and distress that follow the discontinued use of addictive drugs

physical dependence

physiological need for a drug that is indicated by the present of withdrawal symptoms when the drug is not taken

psychological dependence

psychological need to use a drug


compulsive craving for a drug despite adverse consequences and withdrawal symptoms


psychoactive drugs that reduce neural activity and slow body functions
example: alcohol, opiates, and barbiturates


depressants derived from the opium poppy, that reduce neural activity and temporarily lessen pain and anxiety
example: opium, morphine, and heroin


depressants sometimes used to induce sleep or reduce anxiety


psychoactive drugs that excite neural activity and speed up body functions
example: caffeine, nicotine, amphetamines, and cocaine


type of stimulant that speed up body functions and neural activity


powerfully addictive stimulant that speeds up body functions and is associated with energy and mood changes
ie: "speed"

Ecstasy (MDMA)

both a (synthetic) stimulant and a mild hallucinogen. Produces short-term euphoria by increasing serotonin levels in the brain. Repeated use may permanently damage serotonin neurons, suppress immunity and disrupt cognition


psychoactive drugs that distort perception and evoke sensory images in the absence of sensory input.
example: LSD and marijuana

LSD (lysergiv acid diethylamide)

powerful hallucinogen capable of producing vivid false perceptions and disorganization of thought processes. Produces unpredictable effects because it blocks the action of the neurotransmitter serotonin


major active ingredient in marijuana. Classified as a mild hallucinogen

near-death experience

altered state of consciousness that has been reported by some people who have had a close brush with death.


philosophical belief that the mind and body are distinct entities- the mind non-physical and the body physical


philosophical belief that the mind and body are different aspects of the same thing.


sleep inducing hormone


neurotransmitter that inhibits certain neurons making us sleepy

sleep spindles

bursts of rapid, rhythmic brain wave activity.
occur in Stage 2 sleep.

lucid dreams

aware during a dream to question whether or not we are intact actually dreaming

activation-synthesis theory

neural activity is random and dreams are the brain's attempt to make sense of it.

physiological function

dreams/REM provide sleeping brain with periodic stimulation (help develop and preserve neural pathways)

hypnotic ability

the ability to focus attention totally on a task to become imaginatively absorbed in it to entertain fanciful possibilities

age regression

supposed ability to relive childhood experiences

social influence theory

contends that hypnotic phenomena are not unique to hypnosis


stimulant; rush of euphoria, confidence, and energy
cons- cardiovascular stress, suspiciousness, depressive crash

acid trip

perceiving uninterrupted stream of fantastic pictures, extraordinary shapes with intense, kaleidoscopic play of colors.


mild hallucinogen; relaxes, disinhibits, and may produce euphoric high like alcohol PLUS amplifying sensitivity to colors, sounds, tastes, and smell.
cons- impaired learning and memory, increased risk of psychological disorders, lung damage.


depressant; rush of euphoria, relief from pain.
cons- depressed physiologically, agonizing withdrawal


stimulant; increased alertness and wakefulness
cons- anxiety, restlessness, insomnia. uncomfortable withdrawal


stimulant; arousal and relaxation, sense of well-being
cons- heart disease, cancer


depressant; initial high followed by relaxation and disinhibition
cons- depression, memory loss, organ damage, impaired reactions

mind and body are distinct and seperable

socrates, plato and descartes believed that:

wundt; 1879

the first psychology laboratory was established by _____ in the year ______.


the ideas of francis bacon provided an impetus for what came to be known as:

philosophy and biology

two historical roots of psychology are the disciplines of:

edward titchener

used the method of introspection to scientifically identify basic elements of mind


early school of psychology that employed the method of introspection was known as:


william james was a prominent american

healthy growth potential

humanistic psychologists focused attention on the importance of:

nature versus nurture

arguments as to whether psychological differences between men and women result from biological or social influences most clearly involves a debate over the issue of:

any action we can observe and record

in psychology "behavior" is best defined as:

edward titchener

who introduced the early school of structuralism

mary calkins

who was a student of william james and the first female president of the american psychological association

John B. Watson

who would be most likely to agree with the statement, "psychology should investigate only behaviors that can be observed"?


ivan pavlov pioneered the study of:

different levels of analysis in exploring behavior and mental processes

biopsychosocial approach emphasizes the importance of:

nurture works on what nature endows

in concluding her report on the "nature-nurture debate in contemporary psychology," karen notes that:


focusing on the extent to which personality is influenced by motives outside one's own awareness is most relevant to the _____ perspective.

behavior genetics

psychologists who study the degree to which genes influence our personality are working from the ____ perspective.

charles darwin

highlighted the reproductive advantages of environmentally adaptive traits


the way the mind encodes, processes, stores, and retrieves information is the primary concern of the ____ perspective

personality psychologist

dr. aswad is studying peoples enduring inner traits. dr. aswad is most likely a(n):


research participants who carefully observe and report their immediate reactions and feelings in response to different musical sounds are using the method known as:

nurture; nature

the philosophical views of John Locke are to those of Rene Descartes as _____ is to _______.


the psychological perspective that places the most emphasis on how observable responses are learned is the ______ perspective


professor lopez believes that severe depression results primarily from an imbalanced diet and abnormal brain chemistry. professor lopez favors a _____ perspective on depression.


mrs. thompson believes that her son has become an excellent student because she consistently uses praise and affection to stimulate his learning efforts. her belief best illustrates a ____ perspective


a clinical psychologist who explains behavior in terms of unconscious drives and conflicts is employing a _____ perspective


Dr. Kozak has concluded that the unusually low incidence of alcoholism among citizens of a small african country can be attributed to strong fundamentalistic religious influences in that region. This belief best illustrates a ____ perspective


Dr. Santaniello conducts basic research on how children's moral thinking changes as they grow older. it is most likely that dr. santaniello is a_____ psychologist

clinical psychology

which professional specialty focuses on the diagonosis and treatment of people with psychological disorders?


specialist that is most likely to have a medical degree is a(n):


Dr. Lipka is involved in an applied research study of customer satisfaction with a newly developed line of facial cosmetics and other beauty aids. Dr. Lipka is most likely a(n) ____ psychologist

the scientific study of behaviors and mental processes

write the definition of psychology as written in your text book

every psychological event is simultaneously a biological event

write the important sentence from page 10 about the relationship of psychology and biology

events seem more predictable after they have occurred

which of the following best describes the hindsight bias?

researchers must be prepared to reject their own ideas in the face of conflicting evidence

the scientific attitude of humility is based on the idea that:

correlation does not prove causation

Mr. Brown has gathered evidence that the self-esteem of students is negatively correlated with their typical levels of anxiety. Before he uses this evidence to conclude that self-esteem reduces anxiety, Mr. Brown should first be reminded that:

ideas need to be tested against observable evidence

the scientific attitude of skepticism is based on the belief that:

theory; hypothesis

You decide to test your belief that men drink more soft drinks than women by finding out whether more soft drinks are consumed per day in the men's dorm than in the women's dorm. Your belief is a(n) ______, and your research prediction is a(n) _______.

operational definitions

to ensure that other researchers can repeat their work, psychologists use:

the sample will probably not be representative of the population of interest

your roommate is conducting a survey to learn how many hours the typical college student studies each day. She plans to pass out her questionnaire to the members of her sorority. You point out that her findings will be flawed because:

case study

which type of research would allow you to determine whether students; college grades accurately predict later income?


In a study of factors that might affect memory, research participants were assigned to drink either an alcoholic or a non alcoholic beverage prior to completing a memory test. Those who drank the nonalcoholic beverage participated in the ____ condition.

falsely perceive a relationship between two events when none exists

one reason researchers base their findings on representative samples is to avoid the false consensus effect, which refers to our tendency to:

from an alphabetical listing of all students, every tenth (or fifteenth) student should be asked to complete the questionnaire

A professor constructs a questionnaire to determine how students at the university feel about nuclear disarmament. Which of the following techniques should be used in order to survey a random sample of the student body?
a. every student should be sent the questionnaire
b. only students majoring in psychology should be asked to complete the questionnaire
c. only students living on campus should be asked to complete the questionnaire
d. from an alphabetical listing of all students, every tenth (or fifteenth) student should be asked to complete the questionnaire

people with small feet tend to have high IQs

if shoe size and IQ are negatively correlated, which of the following is true?
a. people with large feet tend to have high IQs
b.people with small feet tend to have high IQs
c. people with small feet tend to have low IQs
d. IQ is unpredictable based on a person's shoe size

illusory correlation

Joe believes that his basketball game is always best when he wears his old gray athletic socks. Joe is victim of the phenomenon called:

double blind procedure

to prevent the possibility that a placebo effect or researchers' expectations will influence a study's results, scientists employ:

the room lighting

In order to study the effects of lighting on mood, Dr. Cooper had students fill out questionnaires in brightly lit or dimly lit rooms. In this study the independent variable consisted of:
a. the number of students assigned to each group
b. the students' responses to the questionnaire
c. the room lighting
d. the subject matter of the questions asked

hindsight bias

according to emily's grandfather, Adolf Hitler's obvious emotional instability made it clear from the beginning days of his international conflicts that Germany would inevitably lose WWII. The grandfather's claim best illustrates:

operational definition

specification of how a researcher measures a research variable is known as a(n):


most likely to inhibit critical thinking

illusory correlations

tendency to notice and remember instances in which our premonitions of disaster are subsequently followed by harmful events is most likely to contribute to:


hypotheses are best described as:


all the cases in a group, from which samples may be drawn for a study

false consensus effect

the tendency to overestimate the extent to which others agree with us

random sampling

In order to assess reactions to a proposed tuition hike at her college, Ariana sent a questionnaire to every fifteenth person in the college registrar's alphabetical listing of all currently enrolled students. Ariana employed the technique of:

critical thinking

when you question whether anecdotal evidence can be generalized to all people, you are applying:

a theory

according to professor Fayad, we like people who like us because their affection for us boosts our own self-esteem. His idea is an example of:

naturalistic observation

In order to study the development of relationships, Dr. Rajiv carefully observed and recorded patterns of verbal and nonverbal behaviors among men and women in singles bars. Which research method did Dr. Rajiv employ?


To fully appreciate the interaction of neural activity, mental processes, and the functioning of human communites it is most necessary to recognize peole are?


Dr. Wolski does research on the potentail relationship between neurotransmitter deficiencies and mood states. Which psychological speciality does Dr. Wolski's research best represent?

An extension of a neuron that carries information away from the cell body

An axon is?

Dendrites, to the cell body, to the axon

In transmitting sensory information to the brain, an electrical signal travels from the ____ of a single neuron.


An action potential is generated by the movement of?

Polarization, depolarization

Resting potential is to action to potential as ____ is to ______.


Reuptake refers to the?


Transferring messages from a motor neuron to a leg muscle requires the neurotransmitter know as?

Frontal Lobes

Which lobe of the cerebral cortex is most directly involved in speaking?

Frontal lobe

Which portion of the cerebral cortex is most directly involved in making plans and formulation judgements?

Brain stem

Which region of the brain appears to have the oldest evolutionary history?

corpus callosum

a wide band of axon fibers that transmits info between hemispheres?

Sensory cortex

Which part of your brain recieves information as to whether you are moving your legs?

Temporal, Parietal

The sense of hearing is to the ____ lobes as the sense of touch is to the _____ lobes.

Visiual perception

The surgical removal of a large tumor from Dane's occipital lobe resulted in the extensive loss of brain tissue. Dane is most likely to suffer some loss of?


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:

Behavior genetics

The study of the relative power and limits of genetic and enviromental influences on behavior and personality traits is known as?


the spatial junctions where impulses are chemically transmitted from one neuron to another are called:


brain structure replays information from the eyes to the visual cortex


The school of thought in psychology that systematically avoided the study of conciousness during the first half of the last century was:

Biological rhythm

Those who emphasized that mood fluctuations may be indicative of seasonal affective disorder are highlighting the importance of:

regular body cycles that occur on a 24-hour schedule

Circadian rhythm refers to:


bright light inhibits our feelings of sleepiness by influencing the production of:

Alpha waves

Jordanna has decided to go to bed early. Although her eyes are closed and she's very relaxed, she has not fallen asleep. An EEG is most likely to indicate the presence of :

90 minutes

The human sleep cycle repeats itself about every:


the divided consciousness theory of hypnosis states that hypnosis involves:

Age Regression

Under hypnosis, Mrs. Mohammed is encouraged by her therapist to vividly experience and describe the details of an argument she had with her father when she was a child. The therapist is employing a technique called:


Chemical substances that alter perceptions and moods are called _____ drugs.


The need to take larger and larger doses of a drug in order to experience its effects is and indication of:


The discomfort and distress that follow the discontinued use of certian drugs is called:

decrease self awareness and feelings of guilt

Alcohol consumption tends to:

endorphins, epinephrine

opiates resemble______ and amphetamines resemble the neurotransmitter _______.


a nerve cell; the basic building block of the nervous system


the bushy, branching extensions of a neuron that receiv messages and conduct impulses toward the cell body

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