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Chapter 6 summary

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Psychology 1000

Chapter 6 States of Consciousness Chapter 6: States of Consciousness - State of consciousness is a pattern of subjective experience - Way of experiencing internal and external events - Altered state of consciousness refers to variations from our normal waking state Puzzle of Consciousness - Consciousness defines our moment-to-moment awareness of ourselves and our environment - Subjective and Private o People cant tell what your reality is nor can you enter their personal experiences - Dynamic (Ever-Changing) o We drift in and out of various states throughout each day - Self-Reflective and Central to our Sense of Self o Mind is aware of its own consciousness - Intimately Connects with Process of Selective Attention Measuring States of Consciousness - Have to find ways to define private inner states in terms of measurable responses o Self-report (most common way) People describe their own inner experiences Most direct insight into persons subjective experience o Physiological measures Establish correspondence between bodily states and mental processes o Behavioural Measures Objective Performance on special tasks Levels of Consciousness: Psychodynamic and Cognitive Perspectives - Conscious mind contains thoughts, perceptions, etc that were aware of - Preconscious mental events are outside current awareness - Unconscious events cant be brought into conscious awareness o Arouse anxiety, guilt, or other negative emotions Cognitive Viewpoint - Rejects notion of an unconscious mind driven by instincts urges and repressed conflicts - Conscious and unconscious mental life is viewed as complementary forms of information processing Controlled vs. Automatic Processing - Controlled Effortful Processing 1 Chapter 6 States of Consciousness o Voluntary use of attention & conscious effort o More flexible and open to change Automatic Processing - Performed with little or no conscious effort - Reduce chances of finding new ways to approach problems Divided Attention - Ability to perform more than one activity at the same time - Without this, everything would require our full attention (overwhelm mental capacity) - More difficult when tasks require similar mental resources - Can have negative consequences Emotional Unconscious - Emotional and motivational processes also operate unconsciously and influence behaviour Molecular Mind - Challenges traditional view and propose that mind is a collection of largely separate but interacting modules - Modules process information within the brain to perform tasks related to sensation, perception, memory, problem solving, etc - Output from one module can provide input to another Circadian Rhythms: Our Daily Biological Clocks - Daily biological cycles are known as circadian rhythms Keeping Time: Brain and Environment - Suprachiasmatic Nuclei (SCN) regulate circadian rhythms brains clock - Link to the tiny pineal gland secretes melatonin (relaxes body) - SCN neurons are active during the day, reduce melatonin to keep body awake - SCN neurons inactive at night, melatonin increases body relaxes, sleepy - Environmental factors keep SCN neurons on a 24 hour schedule Early Birds and Night Owls - Morning people sleep and wake-up earlier (alertness peak earlier in the day) o Perform mental tasks best in the morning - Night owls perform best in the late afternoon or evening Environmental Disruptions of Circadian Rhythms - Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) - Sufferers becomes depressed during certain months of the year o If theyre sensitive to light, when sunrise occurs later in winter, it will have an effect on their circadian clock - Jet lag causes insomnia, decreased alertness, and poorer performance o Adjust around an hour a day to time zone changes o Flying west is easier (easier to deal with lengthened day) 2Chapter 6 States of Consciousness - Night shiftwork o Drive home in the mornings (harder to reset biological clocks) o Days off they fall back into a day-night schedule ruins their hard- earned circadian cycle - Rotating Shiftwork o Easier to extend the hours youre awake rather than compressing it Sleeping and Dreaming - Circadian rhythms dont promote sleep - They decrease alertness and promote readiness for sleep Stages of Sleep - Every 90 minutes of sleep we go through a different stage - EEG shows when were awake and alert our brain has a pattern of beta waves o Have high frequency, low amplitude - When we close our eyes they slow down to alpha waves Stage 1 through Stage 4 - Stage 1 o Brain wave patterns become more irregular, theta waves increase o In a light sleep that is easy to wake up from - Stage 2 o Sleep spindles (periodic 1-2second bursts of rapid brain-wave
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