PSYC 1010 Study Guide - Final Guide: Twin Study, Absenteeism, Retrospective Memory

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20 Jul 2016
Chapter 5:
- According to statistics Canada, many Canadians have cut down on the amount of sleep they get in order to
squeeze more out of their days
- Sleep becomes part of our conversation and consciousness only after those occasional nights when we do not
sleep well
- Narcolepsy
oA serious sleep disorder in which those who suffer from it often fall asleep uncontrollably during their
everyday routine
- Sleep has been shown to play an important role in helping us remember things
- Men tend to get less sleep than women
- Higher incomes sleep less, and married adults sleep less than unmarried adults
- Consciousness is the awareness of internal and external stimuli
- William James (1902) created Stream of consciousness
oYour consciousness is continuously changing
- Psychologists are interested in understanding human behaviour
- Psychologists are also interested in unconscious influences on behaviour
- “almost every human behaviour comes from a mixture of conscious and unconscious processing”
- While attention and consciousness are closely related, they are not identical, you can have either one without
the other
- Mind wandering
oRefers to people’s experience of task-unrelated thoughts
oThoughts that are not related to what they are intentionally trying to do at a given moment
- People spend 15-50% of their time mind wandering
- The distinction between what we control about our mental processes and what just seems to happen is often
referred to as the difference between controlled and automatic processes
- According to the theory of unconscious thought proposed by AP Dijksterhuis, under some circumstances the
quality of decisions made under conditions when individuals do not have the opportunity to engage in conscious
thought may sometimes be more accurate
- If people are distracted or diverted from “conscious deliberation” some decisions may actually be enhanced
compared to conditions under which people have plenty opportunity for conscious deliberation
- Attention is the key to distinguishing between conscious and unconscious thought processes
- The Electroencephalograph (EEG)
ois a device that monitors the electrical activity of the brain over time by means of recording electrodes
attached to the surface of the scalp
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- Human brain-waves activity is usually divided into four principal bands based on the frequency of the brain
Beta 13-24 Normal waking thought, alert problem solving
Alpha 8-12 Deep relaxation, blank mind, mediation
Theta 4-7 Light sleep
Delta Less than 4 Deep sleep
- Review of Key points:
oWilliam James emphasized that consciousness is a continually changing stream of mental activity.
Consciousness varies along a continuum of levels of awareness
oOur degree of intentional control over our cognitive processes varies. Controlled processes are those
over which we have intentional control while automatic processes occur without our intention
oBrain waves vary in amplitude and frequency (cps) and are divided into 4 bands: beta, alpha, theta, and
delta. Variations in consciousness are related to variations in brain activity, as measured by the EEG.
- The daily alteration of light and darkness, the annual patterns of the seasons and the phases of the mood all
reflect this rhythmic quality of repeating cycles
- Biological rhythms
oAre periodic fluctuations in physiological functioning
oThe existence of these rhythms means that organisms have internal biological clocks that somehow
monitor the passage of time
- The circadian rhythms
oAre the 24-hour biological cycles found in humans and many other species
oDaily cycles also produce rhythmic variations in blood pressure, urine production, hormonal secretions
and also other aspects of cognitive performance
- People generally tend to fall asleep as their body temperature begins to drop and awaken as it begins o rise
once again
- Fall asleep more easily at a particular time
- Optimal time varies from person to person depending on their schedules
- People often characterize themselves as a “night person” or a “morning person”. These preferences reflect
individual variations in circadian rhythms
- Daily exposure to light readjusts peoples biological clocks
- When exposed to light, some receptors in the retina send direct inputs to a small structure in the hypothalamus
called the suprachiasmatic nucleus
- If you get less than the amount of sleep that you need you accumulate “sleep debt”
- Until proven otherwise, it is reasonable an certainly safer to assume that accumulated sleep loss must be paid
back hour for hour
- For jet lag is that the readjustment process takes about a day for each time zone crossed when you fly eastward,
and about two thirds of a day per time zone when you fly westward
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- Readjustments is easier when you fly westward and lengthen your day than it is when you fly eastward and
shorten your day
- Hormone melatonin, which appears to regulate the human biological clock
- Review of key points:
oBiological rhythms are periodic fluctuations in physiological functioning, which indicate that most
organisms have internal biological clocks. The cycle of sleep and wakefulness is influenced considerably
by circadian rhythms even when people are cut off from the cycle of light and darkness. Exposure to
light resets biological clocks by affecting the activity of the suprachiasmatic nucleus and the pineal gland,
which secretes the hormone melatonin
oIgnoring your biological clock by going to sleep at an unusual time may have a negative effect on your
sleep. Being out of sync with circadian rhythms is one reason for jet lag and for the unpleasant nature of
rotating shift work. Melatonin may have value in efforts to alleviate the effects of jet lag. Bright-light
administration and circadian- friendly rotation schedules can sometimes reduce the negative effects of
rotating shift work
- Sleep might be adaptive because it helps animals restore bodily resources depleted by waking activities
- Sleepers experience quite a bit of physical and mental activity throughout the night
- In addition, to an EEG, the other two crucial devices are an electromyography( (EMG, which records muscular
activity and tension and an electrooculography (EOG) which records eye movements
- Other instruments are also used to monitor heart rate, breathing, pulse rate, and body temperature
- During sleep, people cycle through a series of 5 stages
oStages 1-4
The length of time it takes people to fall asleep varies considerably
How long it has been since the person has slept, where the person is in their circadian cycle, the
amount of noise or light in the sleep environment, and the person’s age, desire to fall asleep,
boredom level, recent caffeine or drug intake, and stress level among other things
Light sleep lasts only a few (1-7) minutes. Breathing and heart rate slow as muscle tension and
body temperature decline
Theta waves are prominent
Hypnic jerks
Brief muscular contractions that occur as people fall asleep, generally occur during stage
1 drowsiness
2,3, and 4 of the cycle, respiration rate, heart rate, muscle tension, and body temperature
continue to decline
Stage 2 lasts about 10-25 minutes, brief bursts of higher-frequency brain waves, called sleep
spindles appear
Slow-wave sleep (SWS)
consist of sleep stages 3 and 4 during which high-amplitude, low-frequency delta waves
become prominent in EEG recordings
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