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Pysch Online Lesson Notes Week 1 - 6 (Semester 2)

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Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYC 100
Professor
Ingrid Johnsrude

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Week 13: Language  Nigel Tufenel discovered the D minor makes people weep instantly  Ties in with Henry Wadsworth’s idea of every chord tying into a specific emotiom`n and that music is a universal language  Also flower arrangements to convey messages or body language  The above assumes that the sender and the receiver are equally aware of what’s going on Comprehension  Vervet monkeys have unique calls depending on what predator is there  However, these calls may be false. For example: prompting a call directed for a snake, when its only a stick… therefore the monkey tribe will assume a defensive posture for no reason Semantivity: The extent to which a language can use symbols to transmit meaningful messages. Generavity: The ability to combine words or symbols of a language using rules of composition and syntax to communicate an almost infinite variety of ideas using a relatively small vocabulary – necessary for something to be considered a “language” Displacement: the ability to convey a message that is not tied to the current time and place – also necessary for language “Language can be defined as a socially agreed-upon, rule-governed system of arbitrary symbols that can be combined in different ways to communicate ideas and feelings about both the present time and place and other times or places, real or imagined” Linguistics – study the rules of language Pyscholinguists – study verbal behavior and cognition; devoted to the study of the acquisition, comprehension, and production of language Basic Sounds Phonology: The rules that govern the patterns of sounds that are used in a language – which sounds are used and how they’re combined Phonemes: the basic distinctive speech sounds in a language that distinguish one word example: rice from lice  In English, R and L are different phonemes, but not in Japanese Phonemic Discrimination: begin with the auditory processing of the sensory differences, and this occurs in both hemispheres. Regions of the left auditory cortex specialize in recognizing the special aspects of speech.  Phonological rules govern how phonemes can be combined in a given language, these rules help us figure out where word boundaries occur in spoken utterances. Ex: lv is uncommon in English but common in Dutch (“I’m Travelling”) Units of Meaning Phonemes -> Combine -> Form Morphemes (the smallest meaningful units in a language) Two types of morphemes: (Engagement) (1) Free Morphemes – meaningful on there own and can stand alone as words ; Engage (2) Bound Morphemes – meaningful only when combined with other morphemes to form words.; -ment Semantics, Syntax, and Pragmatics Semantics: relationship between words and their meanings. Crucial for comprehension Syntax or Syntactical Rules: Grammatical rules of particular language combining words to form phrases, clauses, and sentences. – If words are out of order can you still understand? Pragmatics: The social rules of language that allow people to use language appropriately for different purposes and in different situations. – helps interpret what is said to you Levels of Language Analysis Comprehension of an utterance: (1) Recognize the sounds (phonemes) in the utterance (2) Identify the words in the message and associate them with their meanings. To complete this step, listeners must access his or her morphological and semantic knowledge (3) Analyze the syntax of the message. This is a complex process that can involve the use of many different cures, including word order, word class, function and content words, affixes (a type of bound morpheme), semantics and prosody. Interpret the utterance in its context. This requires the ability to integrate knowledge about the world (pragmatics) with the syntax and semantics of the utterance.  Each level of processing requires the use of multiple cues or rules systems. No necessarily sequential, may be at all levels simultaneously Relation between semantics and syntax Deep structure: the essential meaning of a sentence, without regard to the grammatical features (surface structure) of the sentence that are needed to express it. Surface structure: The grammatical features of the sentence – needed to say the sentence Making Sounds Articulators: mouth structures that make speech sounds (jaw, tongue, lips, and soft palate) Identifying Phonemes  Different languages use different phonemes.  There is a lot of variability in speech (accents, slang etc) – we rely on our experience with language and our knowledge of pragmatics to help us disambiguate Coarticulation  Speech requires very rapid movements of the articulators  Coarticulation: Speech sounds for words are not produced in a discrete sequence. Instead, the articulators are effectively shaping multiple sounds at any moment in time, so that different instances of a particular phoneme are acoustically different, depending on the sounds preceding and following them  Information means that information about speech sounds is spread over time and that information about different sounds overlaps in time Categorization  Discriminating between adjacent items in a set of stimuli that you perceive categorically depends crucially on whether you perceive those adjacent stimuli as the same thing or as different things. Ex: Difference between male1 and male 2 vs. difference between male 1 and female 1  Auditory categorical perception depends on your ability to ignore acoustic variability in speech sounds that is irrelevant in your language, while making using of meaningful variability to distinguish phonemes Multilingualism  Iverson and Kuhl studied perception in Japanese-speaking and American English-speaking adults by creating synthetic speech syllables that began with ‘r’ and ‘l’ but were specially created to be like a categorical perception continuum- they created a matrix of sounds that differed by equal physical intervals  Each blue dot represents on ra/la sound – the lines between the dots represent the physical, acoustic difference between adjacent sounds. The Japanese and American listeners rated the similarity of the possible pairs.  American English talkers perceive ‘ra’ and ‘la’ as separate groups, whereas Japanese talkers do not. Perception is clearly warped by experience Explaining Understanding  Speech perception ‘system’ highlights the phonemic contrast that are used in the language you speak and minimize contrasts that aren’t meaningful  Pitch, in mandarin is meaningful Written Language o A visual symbol system that is imposed on top of an auditory symbol system o Linguistic and analytical skills of language is important for comprehending and producing written language Reading Sounds and Words Two different ways that a reader can approach a written text: (1) Sounding out words – phonetic (2) Reading by Sight – whole reading o A reader’s vocabulary (semantics) also plays a key role in comprehending text o Knowledge of the word is essential for interpreting written language in context. Written Language Redefined Definition: a visual symbol system that is imposed on top of an auditory symbol system (oral language) o Before people can learn to read, they need to be able to map the visual symbol system onto the auditory symbol system o Reading Process: Sight of Word -> Whole word recognition or letter recognition -> photic coding (sounds of letters)-> Control of Speech -> Saying the word aloud Eye Tracking Alfred Yarbus studied eye movements. He discovered that when we view a scene, our saccades(eye movements) are not random – we tend to fixate on the interesting features of the image o Studies cognition – example reading Learning Sounds o When infants are born, they are capable of distinguishing all different phonemes from one another. Only distinguish the phonemes of their native language o First determined by Janet Werker o Infants have the problem of references a) surrounded by dozens of objects that the words could refer to, b) they have no point of reference and can’t ask for clarification o Most infants produce their first words between ages 10 and 15 months o Often overextend words: generalizing known words to a wider variety of contexts than is appropriate for those words o Underextend: Limit context for generalized words to a certain specific meaning Nativism Noam Chomsky proposed that the development of language encompasses a process simply too complex to be the product of environmental learning alone. Argues that children are born with an innate knowledge of universal grammar, the basic features that are part of every world language – this theory is called nativism o A system in the brain that begins to develop after our first exposures to language. No learning is involved in early language acquisition, exposure is required for linguistic growth Genetic Evidence  The difference in linguistic ability between human and non-human animals may be the result of a pair of genetic mutations in gene FOXP2. – Present and is similar in all mammals  FOXP2 is a gene on chromosome 7 that appears to be related to a severe language disorder. The root of this disorder is speech articulation. Critical Periods  Critical periods are times of development during which the brain is extremely responsive to learning a specific type of knowledge  Usually in the first years of development. If not exposed at all they will loose the total ability to speak ever Interactionist Theories Interactionist: a person who believes that language development results from interaction among multiple biological and social influences  Views language acquisition either as a product of the infant’s social environment or as a learning experience guided by the infant him- or herself.  Place more emphasis on environment and learning than the nativists do  View the development of language as springing from the growth of the infant’s capacity for cognition Interactionist Understandings of Grammar Complexity: -> Grammar is a property that emerges from the complexity of a growing vocabulary rather than the biologically endowed universal grammar supported by nativists.  Grammar is a system of organizing and simplifying and extremely complex system rather than a disposition we’re born with Social Processes: -> emphasize language as a social process, since the function of language is to communicate, environment is based on social environment, thus it is very helpful to language Multilingual Households  Babies can learn two different languages simultaneously and are able to differentiate between the two  Bilingual speak just as well as monolingual, also have advantages in nonverbal tasks Clever Hans  Horse that picked up visual cues from his trainer that appeared to communicate  Only humans have the brain capacity to use language Bird Songs o Birds are also effective communicators to attract mates, danger rivals etc o Birds have specialized areas in the brain for producing songs and processing the songs of others ->Example of Convergent Evolution o Convergent Evolution: The acquisition of the same biological train in unrelated lineages Week 14: Genetics & Intelligence Nature VS. Nurture 1) Nativism – the philosophical view that we are born with knowledge already present, certain abilities are “hard wired or innate” present from birth and do not require experience 2) Empiricism – the philosophical view that we obtain all knowledge through our senses, all behavior is a result from individual experience Behavioral Genetics  Important for psychology to determine likelihood for alcohol addiction  Behavior Genetics: the study of genetic influences on behavior – founded by John Scott, John Fuller, and William R. Thompson (studied personality traits in dog breeds) Sexual Reproduction  DNA is organized into structures (chromosomes) that are in the nucleus of every cell  23 pairs of chromosomes – 22 are called autosomes, 23 pair is made up of the X and Y sex chromosomes  Females = XX, MALE =XY  Sperm and eggs cells are produced through a process called meiosis, which results in each cell having half of the chromosomes  The egg can only have an X chromatid, but any given sperm can contain either X or Y chromatid – the sperm determines the sex of the offspring Genes and Alleles  All workings of the cells are controlled by proteins  Genes: small units of DNA that direct the synthesis of proteins and enzymes and result in the expression of inheritable traits – regions of chromosomes that encode particular proteins  Locus – the point on the chromosome where a particular gene is located  Chromosomes come in pairs, the gene on one chromosome of the pair may or may not be exactly the same as the gene on the other chromosome of the pair at the same locus -> when genes at the same locus on the two chromosomes are the same, they are homozygous, if not they heterozygous  The pair of genes at a given locus are called alleles – one is inherited from the father and the other from the mother  If the alleles are different, one often has a dominant effect over the other ex: allele for eye color is dominant brown and recessive blue Genotype and Phenotype o A gene doesn’t influence behavior directly; instead it guides a cell to generate proteins that are related to behavior -> proteins operate the cellular machinery that allows organisms to live o Genes are made up of DNA and represent the blueprints for protein production -> any genetic contribution to a trait (structural or behavioral) is the result of certain types of proteins being manufactured by a given cell o The type of protein that is made depends not only on the structure of the gene but also on the environment, Example: twins with a nearly identical genetic makeup may have different muscle structures because of difference in diet and exercise -> Traits that have some heritability are passed on to subsequent generations by the passage of genes through sexual reproduction Multicolored Dogs?  Labs have two separate genes for fur color (polygenic)  The “B” gene controls color while the “E” gene controls expression Single- Gene Traits  Shown by Scott and Fuller on the genetic basis of “fearfulness” and other traits in dogs -> able to conclude there was a genetic basis to fearfulness, because they could directly predict the proportion of offspring that would show this trait based on the assumption that is a single – gene action Concordance  Most disorders and genetic traits are polygenic  Studies examine the relationship between genetic similarity and similarity in some trait (like intelligence) – often comparing identical twins to fraternal twins and sibling  Identical (monozygotic) twins arise from one fertilized egg and have nearly identical genotypes  Fraternal (dizygotic) twins, in contrast, arise from separate cells and are no more genetically similar than any two siblings with the same parents  Concordance: the expression of similarity in traits (or absence of traits) by both twins  If the rate of concordance (matching phenotypes between twins) for a trait is higher for identical twins than for fraternal twins, then that trait has a genetic component Epigentics Epigenetics: the study of heritable changes that occur without a change in the DNA sequence  Most epigenetic changes affect non-reproductive DNA or cause changes in cells that are passed on as the cells divide asexually.  The genome dynamically responds to the environment – stress, diet, behavior, toxins, and other factors activate chemical switches that regulate gene expression - so exposure to an external factor may cause a change in a group of cells or the blueprint for those cells and that change might continue for the life of the organism  At any point during human development, specific signals could cause incremental changes in gene expression patterns, ultimately created differentiated cells Pitfalls and Errors  Correlation, the most common method of research, can tell us only that two factors are linked, not that one causes the other  These studies tell us about population effects, not individual effects, findings can be generalized to similar populations but not targeted to individuals  Polygenic traits such as height or intelligence lie on a continuum of behavior  It is not easy to separate nature (genetics) and nurture (environment) -> they often interact such that genes can be changed by the environment Heritability  *Most behaviors and disease states are not caused by a single gene; they are polygenic*  Genetic influence is measured by a statistic called heritability or h2. -> Describes the portion of the observed variance in a behavior that can be attributed to genetic differences among individuals. Thus, a trait that shows high heritability necessarily varies within a population, and this phenotypic variation can be attributed to genetic differences  A trait that is not inherited always has a zero heritability, estimates depend on the degree to which the individuals in the studied population have genes in common. Ex: Iceland, which is small and isolated will have a population with less genetic variability, therefore Iceland would produce higher heritability Operational Definition  Operational definition of intelligence: “a person’s ability to learn and remember information, to recognize conceptions and their relations, and to apply the information to their own behavior in an adaptive way” The Differential Approach  Differential Approach: an approach in psychology devoted to tests and measures of individual differences in various psychological properties, including people’s abilities to solve problems  Sir Francis Galton noticed that brilliant people often had brilliant relatives, suggesting that intelligences was hereditary – interested in determining the biological differences that led to differences in intelligence and thought this could have enormous practical implications ex. If intelligence is biological, no need for school  Galton believed it was biologically based-> wanted to relate intelligence to other attributes like head size Factor Analysis  Another answer to the question on how to define intelligence  It is a way to determine correlations between individual items on a test-> if a group test items correlate highly with each other, it provides evidence that they are measuring the same thing  Charles Spearman  A form of mathematical modeling that examines a group of variables and looks for the underlying structure of dimensions that connect them by calculating the extent to which the observed variables can be explained in terms of a smaller number of variables, called factors. Ex: collection of lumps under a blanket is a sleeping child The Indifference of the Indicator  Refers to the finding that the content of the test items and the nature of the task used to test general intelligence didn’t seem to matter much in terms of test scores. EX: people who did well on hard vocabulary tests also did well on easy math tests  All measures of intelligence correlated positively, so he reflected “g” as a common factor of intelligence Binet-Simon  First true assessment of intelligence = Alfred Binet (believed intelligence is a collection of higher-order mental abilities)  Unlike Galton, believed the environmental factor was more important than genetics alone  Also unlike Galton, his measurements of intelligence were intended to identify children who were less intelligent so that they could receive special education -> developed with Theodore Simon  Test: designed to identify mentally challenged children by assessing scholastic skills and it succeeded  Incorporated mental age in their test scores -> description of the child’s score in terms of how it compared to the score of an average child Stanford- Binet  Lewis Terman revised the concept of mental are and introduced the measure of the IQ (intelligence quotient)  Problem: the chronological age with the mental age was not matching up Deviation IQ  Used to overcome the problem with IQ -> by David Wechsler  Deviation IQ: a procedure for computing the intelligence quotient; compares an individual’s score with those received by other individuals of the same age (out of 100) Verbal or Nonverbal  David Wechsler noticed some people would fail the verbal components of an IQ test, -> appeared to demonstrate intelligence in other areas but always received a low score because of verbal deficit  Believed two scores could not represent intelligence properly -> developed a test that tested a variety of subcategories and then gave individual scores for these Correlation with Work Outcomes  Effective for personnel selection For example: workers in the top 1% are more effective than those in the bottom percent  Other Predictors of Work Outcomes  The sizes of the correlations are affected by the reliability of both the prediction variable (intelligence) and the outcome measure (ratings of job performance)  Not everyone thinks intelligence is the only key to academic success – verbal ability or mechanical ability are other important abilities - aptitudes tests are disconfirmed Intelligence vs. Drive  Hunter and Schmidt identified studies that measured intelligence, knowledge of the job, behavioral measures of job performance, and supervisor ratings.  Intelligence also was correlated with task performance which in turn was correlated with supervisor ratings  Intelligence was very highly correlated with job knowledge Intelligence and the Brain  Galton looked for but could not find biological correlates of variations in intelligence – because he used too crude measures such as head size and the behavioral measures were too simple Three cortical network-level attributes appear to underlie these differences in the ability to execute cognitive processes: 1) Efficient use of neural resources – neural activation occurs when people preform certain tasks that brain imaging can pick up on 2) High synchronization between cortical centers - 3) Adaptation of cortical networks in the face of changing demands – the brains ability to change its response to suit a situation Elements of Intelligence  Differences in intelligence do correlate with differences in brain activity. 1. Individuals with higher cognitive abilities show more efficient neural processing, and thus lower levels of activation in areas of the brain used to perform a particular task 2. Individuals with higher skill levels show a greater degree of synchronization between cortical regions than do individuals with lower skill levels. Also, synchronization within an individual increases with learning 3. Individuals with higher cognitive abilities show greater neural adaptation when faced with changing demands compared to individuals with a lower intellectual ability Genes and Environment  Genetic differences are responsible for at least 50% of differences in IQ and educational achievement  Shared environmental influences account for very little of the phenotypic variance in intellectual ability; the correlation of adult intelligence test scores among unrelated persons reared together is near zero  Heritability estimates for intelligence are particularly convincing because of converging evidence from studies of identical and fraternal twins reared together and apart and adoption studies  Gene-environment covariation: When exposure to environmental conditions is correlated into a person’s genes – for example, a person who inherited extroverted characteristics might seek out a job that requires a lot of interaction with other people Shared Environmental Factors  Inheritance is much more powerful than environment  “Flynn Effect” – continuous worldwide rise in intelligence performance – indication of environmental factors affecting intelligence  3 or 4 IQ points per decade Genetics Counts  Sternberg and Grigorenko invited prominent authors in nature- nurture debate – says genetics is a key component Week 15: Development Germinal Period Germinal Period: the first two weeks after the sperm and egg unit (8-10 days after conception)  Sperm and ova are both specialized type of reproductive cells – gametes  Gametes are haploid (each contains half of the genetic complement required for life) – only haploid cells in the body  The result of the merging of male and female gametes = zygote - because the zygote has received half a genome from each gamete, it now has a full genetic load (diploid)  During the germinal period, the zygotic cell divides multiple times, creating numerous identical copies that are all held together in a spherical shape (occur through a process called cleavage) – begins roughly 24 hours after conception  After a few instances of cleavage, the resulting spherical mass of cells is known as a morula Epigenetic Modification  Excluding gametes, every cell in the body has the same DNA within it  The reason they differ to preform different functions is due to epigenetics  Looks at how the environment changes our genes, genes can change dramatically in the response to environmental conditions  Stress, diet, and toxins an influence gene expression  All cells have chemical tags that attach to genes turning it on or off, all of these tags determine how the gene acts – may result in cancer  Ex: pregnant mother exposed to starvation, those experiences influence the fetus and change the fetus’ behavior for the lifetime Stem Cells  Stem Cells: an undifferentiated cell that can ivied and produce any one of a variety of differentiated cells (not undergone any epigenetic modification)  Because each stem cell has the capacity to become any specific type of cell with the proper encouragement, any cell in the morula is at this point essentially interchangeable with any other cell in the morula  These cells are so flexible in the uterine environment that any of them have the capacity to develop into a healthy infant  Example: identical twins are formed when the morula splits into two parts and each part develops into a fully formed infant with the same sets of DNA Blastocyst  As the morula begins to enter the uterus it begins to fill with fluid  Here the cells begin to differentiate, forming two layers: inner cell mass & trophoblast  Inner cell mass: the mass of cells inside the morula that will eventually form the embryo  Trophoblast: the cells form the outer layer of a blastocyst, protects the inner cell mass and transmits nutrients to it.  This differentiation signals the graduation of the developing organism from morula to blastocyst  Blastocyst: the stage a fertilized egg reaches five to six days after fertilization Layers of Cells  Embryonic period begins after implantation in the uterine wall and lasts about 8 weeks  After implantation, the embryo consists of hundred of cell – the trophoblast layer breaks into 2 parts - 1) the developing embryo and 2) the amniotic sac which is filled will fluid and maintains a constant environment for the developing organism  The placenta attaches to the inside of the amniotic sac and the umbilical cord of the embryo  Placenta acts as a filter and protective barrier for the developing organism, preventing the blood of the mother from mixing, and transferring nutrients and oxygen from the mother’s blood to the developing organism and transforms the babies waste for elimination by the mother. 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