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Ch1 Textbook Notes

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University of Toronto St. George
Christine Burton

CHAPTER 01 INTRODUCTION TO COGNITIVE PSYCHOLOGY cognitive psychology is the branch of psychology concerned with the scientific study of the mindCognitive Psychology Studying the MindWhat is the Mindit creates and controls mental functions eg perception attention memory emotions language deciding thinking reasoningis a system that creates representations of the world so that we can act within it to achieve our goals Studying the Mind Early Work in Cognitive Psychology 1800s belief that it is impossible to study the mindDonders Pioneering Experiment How Long Does It Take to Make a DecisionDutch physiologist Franciscus Dondersmeasured reaction timeasked participants to press a button upon presentation of a light simple reaction time taskthen presented two lights and had participants push one button when left light was illuminated and another button when right light was illuminated choice reaction time taskreasoned that the difference in reaction time between simple and choice conditions would indicate how long it took to make the decisionchoice reaction time 110 of a second longerillustrated that mental responses cant be measured directly must be inferred from behaviourEbbinghauss Memory Experiment What is the TimeCourse of Forgettingpresented nonsense syllables to himself one at a time using a device called a memory drumfirst time looked at each syllable one at a time and tried to learn them in ordersecond time begin remembering the syllable then looking to see if he was correctrepeated until he was able to go through the list without making any errorsnoted number of trials it took him to do thisafter learning a list waited for delays immediate31daysthen repeated above procedure and noted number of trials to remember without any errorsused saving method to calculate a savings scoresavingsinitial repetitionsrelearning repetitionsinitial repetitionsx 100found that savings were greater for short intervalssaving curve indicates that memory drops rapidly for the first 2 days after initial learning then levels offWundts Psychology Laboratory Structuralism and Analytic Introspectionfounded the first lab of scientific psychology
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