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Chapter 6

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Western University
Psychology 1000

Chapter 6 Notes Consciousness: Our moment-to-moment awareness of ourselves and our environment Subjective and private, dynamic (ever-changing), self-reflective and central to our sense of self, and intimately connected with the process of selective attention Subjective and private: Other people cannot directly know reality is for you, nor can you enter directly into their experiences Dynamic (ever-changing): We drift in and out of various states throughout each day Self-reflective and central to our sense of self: The mind aware of its own consciousness Self report: People describe their inner experiences Most direct insight into a person’s subjective experiences Not always reliable Physiological measures: Establish the correspondence between bodily states and mental processes Behavioural measures: Performance of special tasks Such as the rouge test Objective Conscious Mind: Contains thoughts, perceptions, and other mental events of we are currently aware Preconscious: M ental events that are outside our current awareness, but can easily be recalled under certain circumstances Ex: You may not have thought of a childhood friend for years but when someone mentions their name, you become aware of pleasant experiences Unconscious: Events that cannot be brought into conscious awareness under ordinary circumstances Controlled Processing: The voluntary use of attention and conscious effort Also called effortful More flexible and open to change Automatic processing: Can be performed with little or no conscious effort Occurs most often when we carry out routine or well-learned tasks Reduces our chances of finding new ways to approach problems Offers speed and economy of effort Well learned behaviours are performed best on automatic Divided attention: The ability to perform more than one activity at the same time Emotional unconscious: We can be influenced by our environment in ways that we are not consciously aware Bargh and Chartrand (2002) tested the mood of university students after sending subliminal nouns that were either positive or negative Circadian rhythms: Daily biological cycles that happen every 24 hours Suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN): Regulates most circadian rhythms Brain clock Environmental factors, such as day-night cycle, help to keep SCN on a 24- hour schedule If we lived in complete darkness, without clocks, our 24 cycle would be longer to 24.2 to 24.8 hours Blind people often experience insomnia when trying to force their sleep into a 24 hour cycle Melatonin: A hormone that has a relaxing effect on the body Seasonal affective disorder (SAD): A cyclical tendency to become psychologically depressed during certain months of the year Typically fall and winter Jet lag: A sudden circadian disruption caused by flying across several time zones in one day Often causes insomnia, decreased alertness and poorer performance until the body readjusts Beta waves: High frequency - 15 to 30 cycles per second Alpha waves: Low frequency - 8 to 12 cycles per second Theta waves: Lower frequency - 3.5 to 7.5 cycles per second Delta waves: Very low frequency - 0.5 to 2 cycles per second Stage 1: A form of light sleep from which you can easily be awakened Spend just a few minutes in stage 1 Some people experience images and sudden body jerks Stage 2: Sleep spindles begin to appear Sleep spindles: Periodic one to two second bursts of rapid fire brain wave activity 12 - 15 cycles per second Stage 3: Sleep deepens marked by regular appearance of delta waves Stage 4: When delta waves dominate the EEG pattern Stage 3 and 4 are often referred to as the slow wave sleep REM: Every half minute or so bursts of muscular activity cause the sleeper’s eyeballs to vigorously move back and forth beneath their eyelids Important for learning and mental consolidation When woken from REM, dreams are almost always reported During REM sleep, physiological arousal may increase to daytime levels Can also have dreams in non-REM sleep, but less likely Non-REM sleep is shorter and less vivid and story-like Each cycle takes about 90 minutes, with longer REM periods throughout this time How much do we sleep: Newborn infants average 16 hours 15 to 24 year olds average 8.5 hours Elderly adults average 6 hours Sleep deprivation: Short term Up to 45 hours without sleep Long term More than 45 hours without sleep Partial Sleeping no more than 5 hours a night on one or more consecutive nights The “average” sleep deprived person only performed as well as the bottom 9% of non deprived students All three types suffered Mood, cognitive, physical performance all suffered Restoration model: Sleep recharges our rundown bodies and allows us to recover from physical and mental fatigue We need sleep to function at our best Need sleep to live Activities that increase the daily wear on our body cause us to sleep more Evolutionary/circadian model: Sleep’s main focus is to increase a species’ chance of survival in relation to its environmental demands Only present in certain species REM rebound effect: A tendency to increase the amount of REM sle
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