PSYC21H3 Study Guide - Midterm Guide: Intersubjectivity, Ob River, Mirror Neuron

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6 Apr 2011
PSYC21 Notes
Lecture 1
Lecture notes:
nfocus on developmental social mind, kinda like reading your mind
putting social in front of the mind means to say the mind doesnt develop w/o
other ppl, that w/o other ppl we
cant understand other ppl
focus on the mind as a social entity , how its flexible in 2 ways
emotional bonding and attachment, how minds understand other minds
attachment and intersubjectivity
false beliefs
like me
Joint attn
Social behavior (how other ppl influence our actions)
memory (if we dont keep track of ytd, we dont know how well we can do
today, unifies the processes involved
in our actions, and ourselves)
self (what is the diff b/w a social mind and self? Are they synonymous?)
^are there mental capabilities that arent tied to your sense of self? Can we
access that?
What is
the social
You know some things before what hes gonna say: thats your social mind at
Youre anticipating, w/o having to hear every single word (aka mind reading)
We have a desire to understand ppl, to be heard by other ppl, to talk to other
How we take the info, all the social cues around us, we then begin to figure out
specific processes in the mind
and the brain
Were integrating everything tgt, gives us knowledge not just about the ppl
around us but the world in general
Neuroscience is included here becuz: we have so many developmental
theories, findings from neuroscience
give us very specific ideas about what goes on in the brain during aging, gives
us a bigger picture of all the diff
Social mind is flexible in 2 ways: not just important to get it right, you need to
be able to entertain any other
hypotheses in order to know what other ppl are thinking
Attachment rep early experiences, those are plastic, they organize how we
expect other ppl to treat us in the
Attachment theory was proposed with an evolutionary framework in mind
Triangle = tinker toy, crib, animals
False beliefs = one of the main paradigms for defining how we have a Theory of
2 children, take one out of the room, move candy into another box, ask the first
child who saw the movement if
they know where child B knows where the candy is
Tells us if the child can simultaneously holds 2 POV, usually after age 4 they
can do this, they can start
differentiating b/w the knowledge of their own mind and anothers, this is
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where ToM really came from
But now kids much younger than age 3 or 4 can entertain these sort of false
like me hypothesis = being able to distinguish self and other, the very
beginning of understanding, being able
to extend yourselves into others shoes
Reading: deHaan & Gunnar (2009)
ERPs tgt with source localization allowed scientists to consider similarities and diff in
patterns of brain activation in infants and adults in response to visual social stimuli (like
Relations b/w neural processes and social or cognitive processing must be studied at
multiple levels of analysis
A complex network of interconnected subcortical and cortical brain structures has been
implicated as a substrate to social cognition in adults
Includes hypothalamus, amygdala, anterior temporal lobe, posterior superior temporal
sulcus, orbital prefrontal cortex, medial prefrontal cortex
A similar network is involved in children, but that it develops over an extended period
from infancy until young adulthood
Some components (eg: amygdala) come online much earlier than other regions (eg:
cortical regions)
Extent and pattern of cortical activation related to social processing change with age
Fusiform face area is less activated in children than adults
of social
includes our behavior of how we interact with others, thoughts and
emotions we experience in relation to others, perceptions of social cues
and behavior
challenge: social processes include such complex constructs like empathy,
motivation, ToM, which are difficult to map directly onto neural systems
skill of social referencing is made of
osharing attn (help to seek social info)
oemotion recognition and associative learning (imp for relating
emotional info provided by others to novel events)
oemotion regulation (imp for using emotional info provided by
others to govern ones own behavior)
use of social info to regulate decision making consists of
ocognitive control (keeps relevant info in an active state and
exerts goal-directed behavio)
ofuture orientation (involves anticipating consequences on reward
& punishment)
operspective taking (considering thoughts and perspectives of
other ppl)
language development in first 3 years of life
ochanges in perception of phonetic contrasts in infants native vs.
non-native lang
oassociating words with meanings
oproducing first words
ocombining words into 2 or 3 word utterances
ospeaking in full sentences
complex construct of empathy
obottom-up processing of shared motor representations
oparietal areas known to be crucial in differentiating my
perspective from others
otop-down executive processing (motivations, intentions, self-
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g with others
face-sensitive ERP component = N170, used it to map how cortical
responses to faces changes from infancy into adulthood
precursors of N170 are present in infancy but less face-specific
neural processing of eyes matures earlier than processing of the whole
facial configuration
relative contributions of the components within the network differ with age
mentalizing = network of temporal poles, posterior superior temporal
sulcus, temporoparietal junction, medial prefrontal cortex
Relationshipsprovides context in which children construct a sense of who they are as
individuals and social partners
infants are motivated to form attachments
oxytocin and vasopressin has been implicated in the formation and
maintenance of such
influence of these on dopaminergic activity in nucleus accumbens = imp in
supporting motivated approach to object of attachment
understanding the underlying neural systems can tell us why disruptions in
these relationships can have long-term consequences for the developing
and emotion research on approach/reward and avoidance/withdrawal systems generally
implicates the same neural systems that are discussed in work on parent-
offspring attachment
also reflects interest in understanding neural bases of addiction and
disturbances in parent-offspring relationship increase risk of substance
abuse and depression (why tho?)
individual diff in these systems may predispose children to diff affective
and behavioral pathologies (after exposure to adverse patterns of
gydisruption of genetic info or interaction w/ environment can lead to
atypical brains can lead children tos experience the world diff
Lecture 2
Lecture notes:
Triangular approach to social mind = evoln + development + neuroscience
All compared to other species to see how we development
No matter what the topic, prof will try to go back to those 3 elements to try to
understand it
Neocortex is bigger in humans than other species
We have so much more than is needed to take care of our everyday lives, so whats it all
Why our brain is so big = extended period of development + foraging + social brain
period of
We are taken care of for a very long time (eg: we dunno how to walk for a
long time)
During that time, we are amassing a lot of knowledge about our environment
Eg: babies are very curious
This makes our social brain more and more possible
Foraging Food source memory
It was hard to find meals back in the day, you just needed more complexity
and energy to keep your body running
so ppl who had bigger brains could start to rmb more of where the good food
was located
Social brain
hypothesisaka Byrne & Whitens Machivellian Intelligence hypothesis
Unpleasant interpretation of human nature
We need a big brain becuz we need to guess what ppl are doing/ thinking so
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