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First Lecture Notes

Course Code
Michael Inzlicht

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Psy100 Lecture 1
Tuesday September 14, 2010
Email address: - ask about anything
Experimental Participation: 4 experiments= 4 % of your grade
Part of learning of psychology is learning about methods, ethics and the whole process of
research from “the other side”.
Psychology= diverse discipline
Fundamental Insights of Psych
Lessons that a century (+) of psychology research has taught us, and they can deeply
change the way you understand yourself, other people and the world around you.
Insight 1: Reality is a story, told to us by our brains
- Matrix reference: I live in the real world, sense of security, perceptions are reality,
thing is you live in the matrix basically. Our brain mirrors reality into your inner
space. Our brains are artists, not mirrors. It’s storytellers.
- Our experiences are a construction, representation of reality. This construction
process involves a lot of guesswork- “filling in the gaps”.
- This subjective representation occurs within the brain.
- Reality from the perspective of someone: every moment, your being bombarded
with information. The arrows represent bits of information coming in- infinite
- We only have access to a limited subset of reality: we can’t see all the yellow
- The limitation of our sensory perceptual system are due to : the sensitivity of our
sensory mechanisms, our attention capacity- we can only pay attention to so
many things.
- Fred is perceiving the red arrows. Reality is only the red arrows, which he has to
figure out. An idea= perception. It gives us the basic information then guides
what we do.
- Perception= creative story telling
- Brains: efficient information processors. Assumption- brain works really well.
- We are not directly interacting with reality; we are creating a fiction about reality
and interacting with this fiction. We assume it’s a pretty close match. We behave
as though we see reality as directly and accurately.
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