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Lecture 6

Unit 1 - Lecture 6 - The Cortex.docx

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PSYO 1011

PSYO 1011 The Cortex 1 Lecture 6: The Cortex September 29, 2009 Cerebral Cortex: • Largest part of the human brain o Makes up 80% of its volume o 2/3 cm sheet of grey (unmyelinated) cells  Outermost layer of the human brain • More advanced the animal, greater % cerebral cortex • Not essential so much for human survival, rather quality of life • Wrinkled & convoluted with fissures o Increased SA Anatomical Divisions: • 2 Hemispheres: L & R o 4 Lobes  Frontal • Speech & skeletal motor functions  Parietal • Body sensations  Temporal • Auditory system  Occipital • Visual area o Each lobe ass. w/ specific sensory & motor functions Functional Divisions: • Primary SensoryAreas o Receive signals via the thalamus • Primary MotorArea o Sends signals to motor neurons in brainstem & spinal cord • AssociationAreas o Involved in thought, perception & decision making Topographic Organization: • Neurons arranged in ‘map’of the body o i.e.) Neighboring neurons in motor cortex control neighboring body areas  i.e.) Neighboring neurons in the visual cortex receive information from neighboring cells in the retina Sensory/Motor Maps: • Both somatic sensory & motor cortex highly specialized o Every site ass. w/ particular body part • Amount of cortex directly proportional to sensitivity of that area’s motor or sensory functions • Arranged ‘upside down’ PSYO 1011 The Cortex 2 o Serve opposite sides of the body Motor Cortex: • Amount of cortex devoted to area dependent on complexity of movements carried out by body part o i.e.) Fingers- large amount of cortex; Torso- small amount of cortex Somatic Sensory Cortex: • Amount of cortex devoted to area directly proportional to region’s sensitivity o Majority devoted to fingers, lips, tongue Dorsal/Ventral Streams: • Info from primary visual cortex in occipital lobe travels along dorsal stream  parietal lobe o Dorsal stream provides representation of object’s size & orientation in space  Helps to guide movements directed towards the object o Becomes active if orientation changes • Visual info travels ventral stream  temporal lobe o Ventral stream serves functions related to object recognition o Becomes active when new object is shown, regardless of orientation Association Cortex: o Composes majority of human cortex o Found w/i all lobes o The ‘thinking’brain o Involved in language, perception & thought o Silent o Stimulation doesn’t produce sensations/motor output o Receives input from sensory system o Acts as an integrator o Amount of space devoted to association cortex much larger in primates o More advanced  more space devoted Specialized LanguageAreas: o Wernicke’sArea o Processes incoming speech & comprehends it o Understanding speech o Near motor areas o Broca’sArea o Formulates a speech response & stimulates motor cortex o Producing speech
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