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PSY100 - LEC 3

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University of Toronto St. George
Dan Dolderman

• Discussion on Confounds and Third Variables Conclusions Re: Methodology - very easy to make simple methodological errors and draw conclusions that are highly problematic - Whenever you hear about research findings, take a close look at the operationalization ordvariables and whether there are any problems with validity, consider 3 variable explanations for findings, look for possible confounds in experimental designs. “God is in the neurons”—YouTube video, AtheneWins - Introduction to neuroscience - Get the philosophical gist* Human brain – network of approx 100 bill neurons Neuroplasticity Musicians – stronger connections b/w two hemispheres Ruidger Gamm Rationality and emotional resilience work the same way – these are neural connections that can be strengthened. 1. Social Neurscience a. Norepinephrine (adrenaline) – released when brain enters defensive state b. As brain enters ‘fearful’ state, brain acts irrationally  manifested as stubbornness in conversations, strategy of poker players (brains have trouble processing ideas in this state) c. Brain reacts to ideas as being threatening and/or harmful d. When expressed views are appreciated, norepinephrine levels decrease (prideful empowerment) – levels of dopamine and serotonin rise 2. Social Psychology a. Empathy neurons – respond to imagination, even when situations are not reality – allows humans to empathize with others b. Tradeoff b/w being rational and insecure c. Self-reflection vaccinates brain to impulsive emotional reactions  more control over emotional states, as thoughts are controlled (self awareness); we can change our neural circuitry; consciousness develops resilience (e.g. insecure people vs. secure personalities)  rationality can consequently override emotions d. Mirror neurons system – imagining the minds of other people (empathy) e. Backwards rationalization f. experiences constantly changing neural connections – direct modification questions what/where real consciousness is 3. God is in the neurons a. when many neurons fire at the same time, can measure in waves (brainwaves) b. transfer of infor b/w neurons becomes optimal when activity is synchronized. c. Will – merely drive to reduce dissonance b/w conflictin? circuits 4. I Am Athene (?) a. left cerebral hemisphere – coherent belief system created to maintain sense of continuity toward lives b. right cerebral hemisphere – opposite tendency; constantly challenging status quo; responsible for shifting worldview c. If current belief system is held onto strongly enough, opposing tendency of right hemisphere does not overcome it d. the convergence of neural activity expresses itself as consciousness (the greater pixel image) e. Identity - mirror neurons looking at self f. we are result of interacting cerebral hemispheres g. Sum: Human consciousness has no core; nothing is external h. Practical labelling underpins all forms of interactions in our daily lives. But by psychologically labelling the self as internal and environment as external, we constrain our own neurochemical processes and experience a deluded disconnection. Neurons: Consciousness as an Emergent Property Ch. 3 & 4 test: Process of neural f
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