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Lecture 1.docx

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Stuart Kamenetsky

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Perception Lecture 1 Perception definition: - Can include different types of energy -> light, sound - Sometimes you can only register after a minimum amount is available - Attentional limitation is a factor - Window on the external world is severely constrained Perception constituents - It is difficult to explain the ultimate nature of perception - One way of describing is it through this image - Interpreter: to make a map of the bottom of the lake which contains information on the properties such as depth, which areas are covered in seaweed, sandy rocky, muddy, etc. o The map is a symbolic way to represent this - Water of the lakes is murky so the interpreter cannot have direct access to the information they need - Has to gain information INDIRECTLY - Does so by equipping himself with a fishing rod, with a probe that is very sensitive - The encounter with the lake and probe will communicate through vibration etc. to the interpreter so they can analyze and interpret the meaning of the vibration - Frequency, variation, briskness…etc – the contact will change each time o Hitting mud – less violent impact, lower rate of vibration o Hit rock – more violent, high freq, o So interpreter will interpret what is means and will use some kind of symbol to represent the various properties - Probe: represents sensory organs – will change as a result with the physical world - Once the probe has been changed after contact with the phsycial world – this change has to be communicated to the interpreter. So the virbation is transmitted – train of neural impulses has to leave and send info to CNS. Brain – most of the interpretions happen here Our visusal system, auditiory – is similar to this type of activity The end process is the creation of the map. Perception is a complex, multi-layered process - Proximal stimulus: and the energy reflected from his body (the perception of the object by the projected energy) - Distal stimulus: professor would be distal. Do not perceive directly, perceive light, (the obeject itself) - Sensory transduction: - End product: consciousness awareness of the sea We do this a million times a day. We effortlessly receive the output of this process everyday. Perception is so natural that we can easily assume that what we perceive is the actual thing but we have to recognize that it is a representation of the physical world. Just like the map of the bottom of the lake is not the bottom of the lake. Ex: Color – green chalkboard. The blackboard’s greenness is not the property of the light, it is the way we symbolically encode the wavelength. Green is like a symbol on the map but not equal to what it represents. One interesting application of the above Back to the picture… - The ultimate data used to build this map is the vibrations - The world itself is out of reach, we always operate inside our mind Interpretting: - When we perceive something, we always actively interpret it - Physical stimulus does not change Cultural factors play a role Top down: general knowledge of the world, expectation, learning and emotional state which contribute to our perception Bottom up: raw data conveyed to the brain – sensory organs toward the center Perception is an active, purposive and exploratory process …and a few more Several more – external receptive systems and internal receptive systems Further Characterizations of senses Distant sensing: vision hearing Since perception is so complex, - Governed by fundamental laws of physics and chemistry
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