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PSYC 1010
Rebecca Jubis

PSYC 1010 REBECCA JUBIS SENSATION & PERCEPTION SENSATION: the process whereby our sensory organs gather information from the outside world  Stimulation of the sense organs PERCEPTION: the process whereby the brain organizes and interprets these sensations PSYCHOPHYSICS: the study of how physical stimuli are translated into psychological experience - How much of a stimulus is necessary for you to detect it? 1) Absolute Threshold; the point at which a person can detect the lowest intensity [of light] 50% of the time  No expectation to detect a minimum amount of light on every trial, but if you can detect it on 50% of the trials, that qualifies as your absolute threshold e.g. [vision] a candle flame viewed from 48KM on a clear dark night [sound] a watch ticking from 6m away 2) Difference Threshold (just-noticeable difference; JND); is the smallest difference in stimulation required to discriminate one stimulus from another, 50% of the time  You don’t just have one particular stimulus, rather two stimuli are presented o Reference Stimulus; does not change [in brightness] o Other [dot] continues to change till it matches reference stimulus WEBER’S LAW - People are able to perceive very small changes if the magnitude of the reference stimulus small, but as the magnitude of the reference stimulus increases a greater change is necessary before a difference is perceived e.g. 60 candles, people would be able to see the difference in the room if you add one extra candle [61 candles]; is the room brighter or the same?  What about a room with 120 candles? When you put an extra candle in the room [121 candles] people will not be able to see a difference; must add 2 extra candles [122 candles] o 240 candles; you need 4 extra candles [244 candles] 3) Signal- Detection Theory; proposes that the detection of stimuli is based on three things: a) Intensity of the stimulus b) Noise (irrelevant stimuli) c) Decision process/ Response criterion  If you are offering someone $5 to detect when they see the stimulus, they are more likely to detect it- BUT let’s say you offer someone $5 to detect when they see a stimulus, but every time they are wrong they must pay you $10 (their response criterion will be different and so will their decision to answer) PROCESS OF PERCEPTION - 3 types of Perceptual Organization: 1) Form Perception; how stimuli are organized into meaningful patterns and shapes o Gestalt psychologists- shape or ‘whole’ how we perceive things in entirety  Proposed a number of LAWS a) Figure- Ground Pattern; we organize things as a background and a foreground  Why are people more likely to see the background rather than the foreground? Individual differences b) Similarity  We organize things according to how similar they are  ‘I see rows of dots and dashes’ c) Proximity  Things are close together in space, tend to be grouped together  ‘ I see columns of X’s’
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