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Midterm

PSYCH101 Study Guide - Midterm Guide: Frontal Lobe, Autonomic Nervous System, Sympathetic Nervous System


Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYCH101
Professor
Colin Mac Leod
Study Guide
Midterm

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Thursday, 11 November 2010
Understanding Emotion
Definition
Emotion: a positive or negative reaction to a perceived or remembered object or
event, accompanied by a subjective feeling
Emotion: a response involving
o Physiological arousal
o Expressive behaviour(s)
o Conscious experience
Emotion vs. Motivation
o Differentiating
o Emotion: usually external stimulus, subjective, affective
o Motivation: usually internal stimulus, goal-directed
o Emotional physiological changes comes from the sympathetic division of the
autonomic nervous system
o When one experiences an emotion, pupils usually do dilate because of the
sympathetic division of the autonomic nervous system. People may also see
these changes:
o Decreased salivation
o Increased respiration
o Accelerated heart rate
o Inhibited digestions and stress hormones are secreted

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o The parasympathetic division of you ANS takes over the calming of one’s
body. It decreases the amount o stress hormones being secreted, but those in
your bloodstream will linger awhile, so arousal diminishes gradually.
Differences among specific emotions
o Positive moods tend to trigger more left frontal lobe activity. The left frontal
lobe’s rich supply of dopamine receptors may help explain why a peppy left
hemisphere predicts a perky personality.
o A neural pathway that increases dopamine levels runs from the frontal lobes
to a nearby cluster of neurons, the nucleus accumbens.
o This small region lights up when people experience natural or induced
pleasures
o Those with high spinal cord injury experienced their emotions more above
the neck.
o However, those with low spinal cord injuries, who had lost sensation only in
their legs, reported little change in their emotions.
o If people have suffered damage to the nearby hippocampus, they still show
the emotional reaction but they won’t be able to remember why.
o Those who have lost use of their amygdala are unusually trusting of scary-
looking people.
Intuitive (common sense) model
o We begin to shake when we are scared.
o The cognitive emotional experiences dictates the physiological one- you
don’t shake until you’re afraid
o Prevalent theory
James-Lange Theory
o People feel afraid because they are shaking.
o Conscious feeling is based on physiological changes
o Perception of the physiological changes is the emotion
o Feeling of emotion is feedback from bodily changes in response to external
stimuli
Cannon-Bard Theory
o Co-occurring as result of stimulus; subcordical activity arises due to the
stimulus and then two tracks grows out of that, one that causes the fear and
one that causes autonomic arousal; those two together are the emotion.
o 3 major objections to James-Lange:
o Bodily changes do not differ much between emotions, despite “clear
cut” experience
o Internal organs are relatively insensitive (Few nerves) and internal
changes occur too slowly to be the source
o Artificially inducing bodily change does not yield a true emotional
experience

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Complicating Emotion
o Emotion is not momentary; unfolds over time
o Conscious experience integrates physiology and situation
o Importance of cognitive appraisal of the situation, based on priming,
expectation, etc.
o Catharsis: emotional release
In psychology, the catharsis hypothesis maintains that
“releasing” aggressive energy (through action or fantasy)
relieves aggressive urges
o Feel-good, do-good phenomenon: people’s tendency to be helpful when
already in a good mood
o Subjective well-being: self-perceived happiness or satisfaction with life.
Used along with measures of object well being (for example, physical and
economic indicators) to evaluate people’s quality of life.
o Adaptation-level phenomenon: our tendency to form judgments (of
sounds, of lights, of income) relative to a neutral level defined by our prior
experience.
o Satisfaction and dissatisfaction, success and failure- all are relative to our
recent experience
o Relative deprivation: the sense that we are wrose off than others with
hwom we compare ourselves
Schater & Singer (1962)
o Shame= new vitamin effects on vision
o Two injective groups, wait for effect
o ½ group got epinephrine/adrenaline (increased heart rate, jittery)
o ½ group got saline/salt water (avoid placebo)
o Three instruction groups (split two groups, into three subgroups)
o Correct information (jittery, fast heart)
o No information (Control)
o Misinformation (numb, headache)
Manipulation & Results
o “Confederate” (working with experimenters) in waiting room acts angry or
happy; observe through one-way mirror
o Those given correct information showed no emotional behaviour, had
explanation (already knew why they felt the way they did)
o Those given no or incorrect information acted angry or happy, too
o Saline (control): had no emotion whether given correct information, no
information or misinformation
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