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Psych Lecture Day 4.docx

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Joe Kim

Psych Lecture 4: Neuroscience - Brain in a Vacuum o Matrix: How do you really know the way the world is the way it “is”? o Are you living in a computer simulation by Nick Bostrom 1. The Brain Constructs Your World – the brain makes the world for you 2. Hebbian learning provides a mechanism for neural coding 3. Prior learning interacts with a collaborative functional process across brain regions – it filters how you see the world - Brain o An metabolically expensive organ 100 billion neurons that can make up to 10000 connections o Neurons are communication devices  Sensory Neuron  Motor Neuron  Inter Neuron o Simple Behaviour: Knee Jerk Reflex  Hammer strike on patellar ligament will cause your leg to kick forward  Stimulus activates sensory receptors in muscles sends signal to spinal cord at spinal cord sensory neuron can connect to motor neuron to quadriceps but can also connect through interneuron to motor neuron that tells the bottom of your leg to reflex  This is very useful b/c brain does not have to deal with this - Heuristics and Prior Knowledge o You never experience stimuli in isolation, you always experience it in by interaction with previous experiences o A bat and a ball together cost $1.10 the bat costs $1 more than the ball.  Q. how much does each item cost? 5 cents. $1,5cents.  Why is it so hard to answer this question quickly?  Prior knowledge has probably shaped how you approached this problem o Visual Top Down Processing  All your prior knowledge that can act as a filter to how you interpret stimuli  Ex. segmentation problem – many sound waves reaching your ears but you can still understand words and you know  How to recognize speech  How to wreck a nice speech o The context filters the exact same audio stimulus into what mean important for you  Illusion of square a being lighter the square b on checkerboard  Draws on your experience of checkerboard patterns – so typically a should be dark, b should be light  Draws on physical qualities of world- the cylinder has shadow so what’s happening to your visual system=A and B give the same luminosity of light, but B is in shadow so A must be lighter in reality according to your brain - Hebbian Learning o Donald Hebb Canadian Neuroscientist – o Neurons that fire together wire together o An actual physical connections with neurons that tend to fire together o Neurons that code for unconditional and conditional stimulus fire together they began to wire together o Sensory and Motor homunculi  Regions such as your hands have unnaturally high cortex devotion as compared to your head  Imagine a situation where your sensory and motor neurons fire without stimuli  Eg. Phantom Limb syndrome o E.g. Even though a person is missing hand they still give report of feel
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