PS102 Lecture Notes - Lecture 11: Circadian Rhythm, Pineal Gland, Myelin

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14 Aug 2016
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Psychology – Lecture 11
Chapter 3 - The Brain
Plasticity
- Plasticity à the ability of the brain to reorganize and compensate for
brain damage, a change in function and structure
o Reorganize
o Repair
How plasticity Works*
- Network of neurons in the brain changes over development in 4
ways
o Growth of dendrites and axons
o Synaptogenesis, the formation of new synapses
o Pruning, consisting of the death of certain neurons and the
retraction of axons to remove connections that are not useful
o Myelination, the insulation of axons with a myelin sheath
Refer to Model 2.3 - the cerebral hemisphere
Endocrine system
- Glands that secrete hormones into the bloodstream
- Hormones à molecules that influence particular organ; blood stream
- Affect bodily functions
- Limbic system à regulate emotions
- Pituitary gland à major gland, impacts other glands, signals other
glands to action (works with the hypothalamus (flight, fight, feed and mate)
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- Adrenal glands (aka emergency centres of our body)
o activates by the sympathetic nervous system to release hormones
(adrenalin and cortisol)
§ Epinephrine (anger) and norepinephrine (fear)
§ Also control salt balance
Chapter 5 - States of Consciousness
What is consciousness?
- Moment to moment awareness do ourselves and environment
History of Consciousness
- Seemed ideally suited to psychology
o Psychology --? The study of mind (Wundt and Titchener)
- Difficult topicà no one definition of what it isà no agreement
- Consciousness
o Infer much from absence of consciousness
o Perform many mental functions without being aware
Measuring consciousness
- How do we operationally define inner states?
- Self reports
o Direct but not verifiable
- Physiological
o E.g., EEG
o Are objective but cannot indicate what person is experiencing
subjectively
- Behavioural
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