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Lecture 1.docx

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Todd Ferretti

Lecture 1 Psychological Definitions of Cognitive Psychology: 1) The research approach that views intelligent behavior within an information processing framework and is characterized by a willingness to develop and evaluate ideas about internal mechanisms and procedures that mediate behavior. Medin, Ross, & Markman (2001) 2) Cognitive psychology refers to all processes by which the sensory input is transformed, reduced, elaborated, stored, and recovered. Neisser (1967) 3) As cognitive psychologists, we are interested in a wide domain of inquiry: How people perceive, represent, remember, and use knowledge. Norman & Rumelhart (1975) Two crucial properties of definitions: 1) Representation: The knowledge we possess, information we have in memory a. Static structure - almost never changing  Store representation as relative wholes, when need retrieve from memory b. Dynamic structure - always changing 2) Process: an operation on an internal or external stimulus - Creating new memories - Manipulating new memories - Updating and reinterpreting Roots of Cognitive Psychology Aristotle Doctrine of Association - Mental life explained in terms of 2 basic components 1. Ideas (elements) 2. Associations (links between elements) • forms foundation of how semantic memory organized 3 Laws of Association o 1. Contiguity - same time or space o 2. Similarity - alike conceptually o 3. Contrast - opposites Franciscus Donders (1868) o First to measure “thinking time” o measured time between a stimulus and different types of responses o Ex. People pressed a key as quickly as they could when they felt a touch on either foot (simple reaction time). o Sometimes they were instructed to only press key when right foot is touched (choice reaction time). o (Simple reaction time) - (Choice reaction time) = Decision time for choice Introspection o Wilhelm Wundt and his student Edward Titchener began the study of experimental psychology in the late 1800s. o Studied conscious mental events (feelings, thoughts, perceptions, recollections) o Introspection with minimum interpretation (look within to observe and record content of mental lives) o Structuralism: Goal is to find simplest mental elements and the laws governing the ways they can be combined. Problems: 1. Unconscious thought? o Problem is that much of cognition is unconscious so hard to test 2. Testability - no objective facts o Some problems were testability as there were no objective facts Ebbinghaus (1885): Treatise called “Memory” o Created method for estimating forgetting curve o Tested his own memory Method of Savings o Memorized lists of nonsense syllables o Tested memory for lists at different time intervals o After periods of time he could not recall any syllables, but found it too less time to relearn previous list than new ones o Savings= original learning time - relearning times William James (late 1800’s) o Made distinction between primary and secondary memory o Primary memory = Short term memory o Secondary memory = Long term memory Functionalism: Define the properties of the mind in terms of the functions that it and its components serve o Draws heavily on evolutionary theory o Extend biological
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