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Chapter 3

Chapter 3 Textbook

Course Code
Gabriela Ilie

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Perceiving Objects and Recognizing Patterns
Chapter 3
Taking sensory input and interpreting it meaningfully.
The problem with perception is how do we attach meaning to the sensory information we
When you look at an object you acquire specific bits of information
oShape, texture, size, name, objects function
To process information one must receive the information through one or more sensory systems
Reception of information and its registration by a sense organ make up the PROXIMAL
The image projected onto the retina is 2D, upside down and reversed
Gibson you immediately acquire information about the objects function
Meaningful interpretation of the proximal stimulus.
Percept involves something different from the formation of the retinal image
Size constancy
oLooking at the back of your hand and bringing it closer to your face
oHand appears larger but you know it did not change in size
Pattern recognition
oRecognition of a particular object, event, and so on, as belonging to a class of objects,
oSHRUB belonging to the same class
Gibson claims perceivers actually do little “processingand that information is abundantly rich; all
the perceiver needs to do is detect or “pick upon the information

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Perceiving Objects and Recognizing Patterns
Chapter 3
Gestalt Approaches to Perception
Form Perception
oThe segregation of the whole display into object (figure)
and background (ground)
oWe see the figure as having a definite shape and the
ground as being shapeless, less formed, and farther
away in space
Subjective contours
oPerception is not completely determined by the stimulus display
oIt requires the perceivers active participation
oWetheimer, Koffka, Kohler (Gestalt)
oBelieved that perceivers follow certain laws or principles of organization in coming to
their interpretations
oThe whole is not the same as the sum of its parts
oRejected the claim that we recognize objects by identifying individual features or parts;
instead we see things as a whole
Gestalt Principles of Perceptual Organization
We group things together that are nearer to
each other
We group elements that are similar

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Perceiving Objects and Recognizing Patterns
Chapter 3
Good Continuation
We group together objects whose contours
form a continuous straight or curved line
When we look at subjective contours, we
mentally fill in the gaps to see a closed,
complete figure
Common Fate
Elements that move together will be grouped
Law of Pragnanz
We tend to select the organization that yields the simplest and most stable shape or form
We see symmetric and simple forms more easily than complex or asymmetrical forms
Minimal model theory
Bottom-Up Processes
Bottom Up (Data-Driven) starting off with small bits of information in order to form the big picture
Top-Down (Theory/Conceptually Driven) perceivers expectations, theories, or concepts guide
interpretation and analysis
Bottom-up processes involved automatic, reflexive processing that occurs even when the
perceiver is passively regarding the information
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