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Department
Psychology
Course
PSYC 100
Professor
Ingrid Johnsrude
Semester
Winter

Description
Week 7: Heritability and Evolutionary Psychology Evolutionary Psychology: Evolutionary psychology is concerned with the evolutionary underpinnings of behavior – understanding the adaptive significance and utility of behaviors exhibited by modern humans Twin Studies • Studies find that identical twins show a greater correspondence in many traits than do non-identical siblings Heritability • Behavioral genetics: studies the genetic and environmental influences on behavioral differences among individual members of the same species • Genetic influence is measured by the h2 coefficient • Heritability: Amount of variability in a given trait in a given population at a given time due to genetic factors. • One Gene, One Disorder hypothesis: Theorizes that one gene is responsible for one disorder, or a single specific gene is the causal agent in a specific disorder. Alleles Not Pedigrees • OGOD is not successful in the area of mental disorders - major mental disorders do not involve single genes carrel • Pedigree studies are useful because they involve many genes • Search for many genes of small effect has led to an increase use of allelic association designs -> compare affected and unaffected individuals, regardless of their kinship status • The Human Genome Project – identified large number of markers on many chromosomes, means they can identify genes of modest effect Fixed Genes • Genes that increase an offsprings chances of survival will become more common in the population until they no longer add survival value while genes that do no affect survival will continue to vary • Changes in evolutionary fitness require additive generic variance, genetic variance due to genetic dosage, as opposed to interactions among different genes (non additive variance) and is responsible for the resemblance between parents and offspring • Contraception may have changed the nature of the heritable precursors of variations in fertility • Heritability statistics can be computed using contrasts between identical (monozygotic) and fraternal (dizygotic) twins or between genetically related individuals reare together (T) and apart (a) Because MZA twins share identical genetic material and no common environment, the correlations of MZA twins directly reflect heritability • Difference between MZA and MZT twins directly estimates the effects of shared environment Two Interrelated Causes • Behavior has two interrelated Causes: (1)The structure and chemistry of the organism (2) The Environment • Aspects of structure and chemistry vary significantly within the human species- ex: coordination and height or an extra chromosome • Genetic differences are meaningfully related to different behaviors and developmental outcomes in current environments  environmental influences affecting a child to reach their potential intelligence Descent with Modification • Evolution by natural selection consists of descent with modification through the differential survival of offspring -> changes that are produced by evolution are inherited • Evolution by natural selection produces adaptations, features of organisms that have particular reproductive and survival functions • Misconceptions - humans are not more highly evolved than other species • A specific allele may create a different genetic load at different times or in different environments • Genetic load: The reduction in overall evolutionary fitness for a population compared to what the population would have if all individuals had the most favored genotype. Naturalistic Fallacy • A misconception – Naturalistic Fallacy: Determination of what should be based on what is natural; whatever is natural cannot be wrong and we must accept things as they are. • A misconception – Genetic Deterministic Fallacy: The mistaken belief that if an organism evolves, that evolution is determined by genes rather than an interaction of genes and environment. How things Work • Facultative: behaviors that are determined by the immediate environment (ex: any cross-cultural differences in parenting) as opposed to obligate behaviors (experience of sexual attraction) which develop independent from environmental context • Pain an individual feels when he falls down is obligate – pain a child feels during divorce is facultative • Evolutionary theories are environmental and selctionist in orientation because past environments are posited to have selected characteristics of organisms by acting at the level of individual genes Epigenetics • Changes in cellular inheritance that are not caused by changes in DNA • An organism cannot pass characteristics it has acquired (experience) to its offspring because acquired characteristics would not be expected to result in alteration of the DNA sequence The Function of a Feature • Adaptionist view of the phenotype (The outward expression of an organism's genotype; an organism's physical characteristics and behavior.) – George c. Williams “What is the function of a particular feature? What selective advantages have contributed to the shaping of the phenotype?” • Adaptation must meet the following criteria: 1. It is obviously designed to accomplish some biological purpose 2. It operates in a similar manner over cultures and time 3. It is plausibly related to reproductive and survival success in ancestral environments 4. It is not more simply explained on other grounds How Do we Know Adaptations Exist? • Adaptations have historically contributed to the reproductive success of individuals or to the reproductive success of individuals and their relatives • Our perceptions of self interest evolved as a way to indicate expected gains and losses of fitness. • Evolution designed people to desire things and experience emotions that increase their fitness in ancestral environments Species Typical • Ex: Male psychology to prefer to be attracted to women with high reproductive success and produces a lot of children • Characteristics is genetically caused, it would not be evident in traditional behavioral genetic studies because they are designed to identify the degree to which differences among people are attributable to genetic influence, not to identify species-typical genetically caused traits Sexual Preference and the Four Criteria 1. Maximizes attraction to and motivates behavior toward reproductively viable partners 2. It is similar over cultures and time 3. It is plausibly related to reproductive and survival success in ancestral environments in that mean who had this sexual preference system were likely to out-reproduce those men who did not 4. It is not more parsimoniously explained on other grounds, such as a general preference for particularly shaped objects Parental Investment Theory: The energy, time, resources, and opportunity cost associated with producing offspring • Parental Investment cost contrasts with mating opportunity cost, the effort and costs incurred in securing and preserving mating opportunities • Well exemplified by the mating strategy of elephant seals – females mate with the males who dominate in fights and avoid the others Polygyny Polygyny: Sexual behavior in which one male mates with more than one female, while each female mates with only one male. Some males have multiple female reproductive partners while most have very few or none at all. • The degree of polygyny in a species is often associated with greater male size – the different size of human males and females and other • evidence implies moderate polygyny in the human ancestral environment Hormones and Selection • Sex differences – mating strategies, risk acceptance, and aggression are hormonal • Sex hormones are steroids (lipids) produced from cholesterol • Steroid hormones pass through the cell’s plasma membrane and bind to nuclear membrane receptors inside the cell. Then, the combined steroid hormone receptor complex enters the nucleus, binds to the DNA and acts on genes. Steroid receptors are highly specific and psychologically interesting due to their high specific motivational effects. Act both as organizers of foetal neural tissue and as context-sensitive activators of biologically significant behaviors throughout life. Epigamy (Sexual Selection) • By females preferring the larger males – raises the question if females influence the evolve of particular characteristics. • Epigamy: A form of sexual selection based on the alteration of appearance in some way that provides greater attraction.  females preference of African long tailed widows bird caused males to develop longer tales Intrasexual (Sexual selection) • Competition between individuals of the same sex – intrasexual selection • Intrasexual selection produces characteristics that provide advantages, sometimes even to detriment of survival advantages Conditional Strategies • Individuals are genetically the same but adopt different behavioral tactics, depending on conditions they encounter during their lifetimes • Example: Grasshoppers courting females or stalking them until success – the next alternative tactic is used by less successful males The Mathematics of Inheritance • Hamilton recognized that although altruists may be less likely to leave progeny than non-altruists, altruistic genes can be selected for and increase in frequency • Organisms share varying numbers of their segregating or polymorphic genes (alleles) with their relatives by common descent. First degree relatives (parents , offspring, siblings) share 50%, second degree relatives (nieces, nephews, aunts) share 25% etc • Inclusive fitness: Reproductive success of those who share common genes. – defined as the sum of an individuals Darwinian fitness (personal reproductive success) and his influence upon the Darwinian fitness of relatives, weighted according to their coefficients Animal Nepotism • Altruistic behavior in animals has been often found to be nepotistic • Nepotistic: Tendency to favor relatives over non-relatives regardless of circumstances. • Animals act not only to increase their own fitness but also those of their relatives • People have behavioral expectations of anyone connected by these contracts. People should thus be sensitive to differences in genetic relatedness of others and expect kinship based variations in nepotistic behavior among them • Reciprocal Altruism: Altruism in which people behave altruistically toward one another because they are confident that such acts will be reciprocated toward either them or their kin. • With cooperation comes the possibility of defection, or cheating • Game Theory: Mathematical approach used to study and predict the evolution of social interactions. – Describes a social exchange matric in which the payoffs and the costs of cooperation are pitted against the benefits and costs of defection in an ongoing social exchange – prisoner dilemma A 50% Share • Evolutionists view the unit of selection as the gene (loosely defined as parts of DNA that cause particular phenotypic effects and are inherited together), not the vehicle that carries the gene(the actual organism). This way of thinking about the unit of selection has many consequences for understanding conflict and cooperation and has led to other discoveries. • This means a mother and their offspring share 50% of their polymorphic genes Mom VS. Foetus • The immune system of the mother must be prevented from attacking the foreign element (the paternal genome in the foetus). • Accomplished in the placenta, which does not display the human leukocyte antigen (HLA) markers and thus protects the fetus from the maternal immune system – foetus also seems to defend itself against the maternal immune response • Because the mother and fetus do not have identical genetic interests, there is opportunity for competition between them – fetus to gain maternal resources and mother doesn’t want to give them • Hormones that maintain pregnancy are initially produced by the mother, but by day 50, the fetus produces them in larger quantities - mother becomes insensitive to hormones Competition for Family Resources • Fetus attempts to maximize its share of each maternal meal – raises mothers blood pressure • Maternal – paternal gene conflicts can also occur when females commonly mate with more than one male – manifests later on in child’s behavior • Children who receive quality parental investment to behave in a way that supports or aids parents, while children who receive little have behaviors that help them survive without help Visible Emotions: Paul Ekman found 6 1. Surprise 2. Happiness 3. Anger 4. Fear 5. Disgust 6. Sadness • Can be recognized by New Guineans and Americans and blind people • Function of facial actions is interpersonal Jealousy • Based in evolution, expressed differently in different cultures or environments • Related to the parental investment theory, women competed for men based on their willingness to commit to them and their resources • Both limited in their potential reproductive success – men by the number of fertile partners and women by resources for raising offspring – men could compete through acquiring status and wealth • Evolutionary competition led to psychologies that maximized reproductive success Week 8: Motivation and Emotion Mechanism: Drives Motivation: A general term for phenomena that affect the nature, strength, and persistence of an individual's behavior. – the internal and external desires, needs, and interests that arouse and activate an organism to move toward a specific goal Drives (motivational states): A reversible internal condition that affects the nature, strength, and persistence of an individual's behavior. Week 8: Motivation and Emotion Motivation: a general term for phenomena that affect the nature, strength, and persistence of an individual’s behavior • Drives: a reversible internal condition that affects the nature, strength, and persistence of an individuals behavior Regulatory Drives: such as hunger, thirst, and sleep that help maintain physiological homeostasis and are needed for immediate survival - related to specific areas of the hypothalamus Non-regulatory drives: fulfill some other evolutionary purpose, such as reproduction, safety, or cooperation • (1) – safety: drives such as sleep and fear that motivates us to replenish our bodies and avoid danger • (2) Reproductive; sexual, maternal, motivates to reproduce and care for the young • (3)Social; approval and acceptance drives that motivate us to cooperate • (4) Educative; play and exploration, which motivates us to practice our skills and learn about our environments From Drive to Action: motivational states are energizing, they direct an animal to act and direct behavior toward a goal – Ex: hunger motivates eating Motivational States • Drives are reward seeking states and motivated behavior is reinforced by the pleasure we experience once the reward has been obtained • The reward system is relation to the limbic system, the basal forebrain • Olds and Milner, discovered that rats would quickly learn to press a lever for electrical stimulation of the brain- apply small electrical shocks to different parts of the brain -> sometimes the rats would choose the esb instead of food, shows that animals can be motivated by rewards that have no obvious value for reduction Distinctly Human • Dutton and Pinker argue that aesthetic pursuits (like art, literature) are for satisfying drives. These achievements demonstrate skill and creativity and are associated with high status, which can make one more competitive as a mate Central State Central State Theory: certain hubs or nuclei in the brain involve detection of imbalances, decision making, and motor output – example, you may not know your body is low on salt but you crave potato chips • Hypothalamus serves as such a hub-> sense internal states, such as levels of glucose, hydration, salts and internal temperature, responds to hormone levels • Lesions in the hypothalamus lead to deregulation in drives such as feeding, but also in temperature an salt balance Drive-Reduction Theory: proposes that a drive produces an unpleasant state that causes an organism to engage in motivated behaviors. Reduction of drive is reinforcing Push and Pull • Central state theory- Cant explain the specific actions we take, explains the drives but not the incentives that lead us to solve a need in a specific way • External motivators can override apparent homeostatic mechanisms -> many people will do anything for money, even though money doesn’t change a homeostatic need Volunteering: • Children who were offered an award for drawing were less excited than children who were not offered an award • Sometimes extrinsic incentives can actually reduce motivation due to the over-justification effect • Over-Justification Effect: this hypothesis predicts that people who shift from intrinsic to extrinsic rewards for engaging in an activity will stop the activity if the extrinsic reward is removed. This cessation of previously enjoyable behavior is the over-justification effect Many Sensors Of Hunger • Can still feel hunger even if the stomach is removed – pressure sensors keep you from eating until you burst, neural sensors – signal the nutritive value of food • Glucose is a simple sugar use by most body cells for energy – decreasing glucose levels lead to a sense of hunger • Arcuate Nucleus (in the hypothalamus) – this nucleus contains 2 types of neurons that when stimulated have opposite effects on eating: one stimulates feeding behavior and the other suppresses it • Societal, aesthetic and regulatory factors (used to 3 meals a day) Drouds Researchers have shown that: 1. Animals are highly motivated to turn on stimulating electrodes implanted in their medial forebrain bundle and nucleus accumbens 2. Recording electrodes in these structures become active when animals receive food and other rewards when performing various tasks 3. When the two structures are destroyed, animals stop working to obtain rewards Sex Drive: • Drugs and sex very rewarding, sex depends on the pleasure principle • Sexual Orientation: birth-order effect is the product of the interaction between genes and the prenatal environment (gay mean have more biologically older brothers than straight men do) Feelings • Emotion: a relatively brief display of a feeling made in response to environmental events having motivational significance or in response to memories of such events – textbook – feelings and emotions are synonymous • Damasio – separates feelings from emotions. Emotions – are internal reactions that occur automatically and unconsciously in response to a certain stimuli. Feelings – occur when neural reactions become conscious (cognitive) • LeDoux – the word emotion does not refer to something that the mind or brain really has or does. Emotion is only a label, a convenient way of talking aspects of the brain and its mind Basic Emotions • Izard – found that people in different cultures generate and recognize the same basic emotional expressions. Ekman identified seven basic emotions: happiness, sadness, surprise, fear, anger, contempt and disgust  suggests that human’s share a common genetic heritage and are thus tied to basic brain functions A Distributed System • Emotion is distributed among several different sections of the brain – emotion makes sense of or finds meaning in limited information • Probably goes on mostly in the frontal cortex – an integrating sensation with memory and other sources of meaning Explaining Emotion: Many Theories ♦ James-Lange: ANS before emotion  emotional response occurs after the ANS response. Each emotion has its own specific pattern of ANS arousal, and our brain reads this patter to interpret the current emotional state ♦ Cannon- Bard Theory: proposes that the brain controls emotion and the ANS is merely coincidental to the emotional state. “Central theory” ♦ Schachter Two-Factor Theory: autonomic nervous system responses cognitively. We label the emotion associated with the arousal according to the situation we are currently in. ANS responses to fear and sexual desire are similar (increased heart rate) Facial Feedback • Facial Feedback Theory: if you want to feel happy, put on a happy face Amygdala and Emotion • Amygdala plays an important role in negative emotions, such as fear and anger • Amygdala is a cluster of nuclei underneath the cerebral cortex in the temporal lobe – part of the limbic system • Scientists demonstrated the amygdala’s role by removing it and portions of the temporal lobe in rhesus monkeys.  Failed to show fear when presented with objects that previously feared them Prefrontal Cortex • Plays a role in our conscious experience of emotions and more thoughtful and deliberative responses to those emotions • Damage to it causes a lack of experience of strong emotion Week 10: Personality Theories Are You Always the Same Person? • Debates over predestination, free will, nature vs nurture, social environment, and many others. – always both Personality Defined: really describing a characteristic about that person that is relatively constant. Minor changes in behavior don’t really affect how they are. Consistent pattern of thoughts, feelings, and behaviors that characterize each person as a unique individual. Study of personality focuses on describing stable differences among individuals Personality: A particular pattern of behavior and thinking that prevails across time and situations and differentiates one person from another. Four Major Theories • Trait, psychodynamic, humanistic, and social cognitive • All are multidimensional, each contribute to the overall definition of personality Measuring Personality: all four should be interpreted as a set of continuums, the psychologists use tests as part of evaluating individuals according to the tenets of all four theories Personality Assessments: (1) Objective Tests: Minnesota Multiphasic Inventory (MMPI-2) is an objective personality test that asks people to answer a series of true/false questions about themselves - NEO Personality Inventory (N=neuroticism, extroversion, and openness) is also an objective test that measures personality factors. NEO provides a series of statements that a person agrees or disagrees with a five-point scale. (2) Diagnostic Tests: Rorschach test is the best known projective test. A series of inkblots is presented and the person describes what he or she sees in the inkblot. Person may project his or her personality into the inkblot. Primarily used to diagnose psychosis (3) Thematic Apperception Test (TAT) is a projective test where the person makes up stories about images they are shown on a card. The persons personality will be reflected in the story Trait Perspectives: The Traditional Approach • Since Greek cavitation it has been recognized that people differ not just physically, but also psychologically • Trait approach classifies and describes psychological characteristics by which people differ consistently between situations and over time • Goal: to find a small set of meaningful traits that can describe effectively the personality of the individual • Allport came up with 18,000 traits to describe, Cattel developed 16 through the use of factor analysis. • Factor Analysis: Statistical analysis that examines all of the correlations between all of the items and determines if any of them are highly correlated with each other. The Big Five • Current best approach to study personality • Big Five: Five personality dimensions derived from analyses of the natural-language terms people use to describe themselves and others. -> openness, conscientiousness, neuroticism, agreeableness, extraversion = personality • Called the NEO personality test: Instrument used to measure the elements described in the five-factor model • The older you get, the less likely your personality will change Interactions • Personality is affected by the interaction between genetics and environment • Temperament acts on environment, an individual who is difficult tends to elicit negative feedback from others, creating a more negative environment. We can separate genetics or environment from personality development Freud • Primary theorist in the psychodynamic literature • Psychodynamic: The general term for psychological theories that emphasize the relationship between the conscious and unconscious and of the interaction among the various drives and forces within a person. • Believed disturbing child experiences caused suffering – speak freely and have them uncover their buried memories • Hypnosis and intrigued by the fact that people could be given posthypnotic suggestions • Our mind is more than just conscious perception and believed the mind largely consists of unconscious forces and desires – bizarre human behavior is due to the unconscious • Used Psychoanalytic theory: Freud's theory of personality based on conflict between the conscious and unconscious mind and on developmental stages tied to various bodily functions. – to describe personality and the techniques he used to examine patients The ID, Ego, Superego 1. ID is completely unconscious reservoir of psychic energy, Strives to satisfy basic sexual and aggressive drives, operating on a pleasure principle and demanding immediate gratification 2. The ego is conscious, mediating the conflicting demands of the id, superego and reality. It strives to satisfy the id’s desires in appropriate ways that bring pleasure rather than pain. Reality principle. 3. The superego is partly conscious structure that strives the live up to internalized ideals and desires to follow the rules and restrictions society places on us. The superego punishes the ego, by creating feelings of guilt and shame • You be you is an interaction of both conscious and unconscious processes of the mind that can conflict with each other Psychosexual Development • Freud believed personality develops through a series of childhood stages – each stage presents a different challenge we must work through • Psychosexual stages are completed successfully; the result is a healthy personality. If certain issues or conflicts are not resolved at the appropriate stage, fixation can occur • Fixation is a lingering focus of pleasure seeking energies a an earlier psychosexual stage. For ex: someone stuck in the oral stage might seek stimulation through smoking, drinking etc • Handled fixations or other unwanted thoughts and desires through a system of defense mechanisms that helped hide these elements from the egos awareness • Vaillant divided the defense mechanisms into three categories according to the degree to which they promote either ineffective or effective behavior (1) Immature defenses distort reality the most and lead to the most ineffective behavior (projection, regression, and displacement) (2)Intermediate defenses involve less distortion of reality and lead to somewhat more effective behavior (formation, sublimation) (3) Mature defenses involve the least reality distortion and are associated with the most adaptive coping (humor and suppression) Assessing the Unconscious • Contemporary psychologists use the word “unconscious” to refer to information processing of which we are unaware, rather than Freud’s rolling pit of unconscious drives • Pyschoanalysis: Form of therapy aimed at providing the client with insight into his or her unconscious motivations and impulses. • Free Association: Method of Freudian analysis in which an individual is asked to relax, clear his or her mind of current thoughts, and then report all thoughts, images, perceptions, and feelings that come to mind. • Freud developed dream analysis: Evaluation of the underlying meaning of dream content. Healthy People • The humanistic perspectives of personality emphasize peoples conscious understanding of themselves and their capacity to chose their own paths to self fulfillment. Developed to understand how healthy people develop through life as opposed to outlining how abnormal behaviors manifest along the way • Concentrate on what separates us from other animals – such as ability to create belief systems • Phenomenological Reality: How each individual views his or her own world. • Rogers and Maslow Carl Rogers • A self concept- a person’s understanding of who he or she is plays a crucial role in shaping ones phenomenological reality - many people were striving to discover or become their real selves • If others weren’t happy with us we cant be happy with ourselves • People should receive Unconditional Positive Regard; Therapeutic approach that a person's worth as a human being does not depend on anything that he or she does, says, feels, or thinks. • Client-centered interviews – provided clients with honesty and unconditional positive regard Abraham Maslow • A persons behavior stems from a motivation to reach his or her full potential • People must first satisfy their lower level needs before focusing on higher level needs of self fulfillment • Maslow’s hierarchy of needs: Motivation for different activities passes through several levels of need, with entrance to subsequent levels dependent on first satisfying the needs of previous levels • Maslow studied people who were productive and well adjusted such as Einstein and Gandhi Reciprocal Determinism • Social- cognitive perspectives of personality emphasize the role of social experience in the development of personality • Individuals have their own unique social environments and thus their own unique personality • Reciprocal determinism – our personalities affect how we interact with our environment and how environmental factors influence us is affected by our personalities • We are constantly learning and creating mental hypothesis about the world – help shape the cognitive constructs that determine our personality • Cognitive constructs: A general belief system that affects how a person understands events and selects appropriate behaviors. • We form an ongoing learning process, our personality is never actually fixed Locus of Control • Julian Rotter believed that based on their experience, people decide to believe what happens to them either is or not controllable by their own efforts • Locus of control: People's beliefs about whether the outcomes of their actions depend on what they do or on events outside their personal control. • Internal Locus of control: Belief that an individual can control his or her own actions and results. • External locus of control: Belief that circumstances are beyond the control of the individual. Consequences of Control • Having an internal locus of control often is associated with positive outcomes for people living in individualistic cultures like Canada Conditioned Humans • Learned Helplessness: General belief system in which an animal or human learns hopelessness and passive resignation when unable to avoid repeated aversive events. • Seligman placed dogs in an inescapable harness and shocked them then put them with other dogs in a harness where they could escape • Helplessness has been applied to areas of human behavior such as depression, domestic violence and addiction • Uncon
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