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Chapter 9

Chapter 9 Notes

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Department
Psychology
Course Code
Psychology 1000
Professor
Dr.Mike

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CHAPTER 9: THOUGHT, LANGUAGE, and INTELLIGENCE > LANGUAGE - evolutionary theorists believe that language evolved as humans gathered to form larger social units The Nature and Structure of Language - Language: a system of symbols and rules for combining these symbols in ways that con produce an almost infinite number of possible messages or meanings - Three properties: o Language is symbolic: uses sounds, written signs, or gestures  Displacement: past, future, and imaginary events and objects that are not physically present can be symbolically represented o Language has a structure: has rules that govern how symbols can be combined to create meaningful communication units o Language is generative: symbols can be combined to generate an almost infinite number of messages that can have novel meaning Surface and Deep Structure - Psycholinguists: study the psychological properties of language and the underlying mechanisms that produce it - Surface structure: the way symbols are combined within a given language  rules for these combinations is syntax: rules of grammar - Deep structure: the underlying meaning of the combined symbols  the rules for connecting the symbols to what they represent are known as semantics - Recall deep structure easier than surface structure (meaning over specific words) Language from the Bottom Up - Phonemes: the smallest units of sound that are recognized as separate in a language  English uses about 46 - Capable of producing hundreds, but most languages use 40-50 - Morphemes: the smallest units of meaning in a language  prefixes and suffixes - More than 100,000 morphemes which can form nearly 500,000 words Acquiring a Language Biological Foundations - children, despite limited thinking skills, begin to master language early in life without any formal instruction - despite differences at the phoneme level, languages developed all over the world seem to have common underlying deep structure - in between 1 and 3 months, children vocalize the entire range of phonemes found in all the world’s languages  called “cooing” - at around 6 months, they make sounds of their native tongue, and stop making the phoneme sounds of other languages  called babbling - sensitive period during which language is most easily learned  infancy-puberty - language deprived children who were found past puberty seemed unable to acquire normal language skills Sex Differences - Broca’s area  speech production - Wernicke’s area  speech comprehension 1 - Aphasia  a disruption in speech comprehension and/or production - Men who suffer left hemisphere strokes are more likely to show aphasia o Women’s language function is shared between left and right hemisphere Social Learning Process - motherese  a high-pitched intonation that seems to be used all over the world - parents teach by pointing out objects and naming them - Skinner  operant conditioning explanation  children’s language development is strongly governed by adults reinforcing appropriate language and vice versa o No longer believed b/c it has been found that parents typically do not correct their children’s grammar, rather focus on the “truth value” - by second year of life, children utter two-word sentences called telegraphic speech, that consist of a noun and a verb (want cookie) Bilingualism - vocab of a language can be learned at any age, but mastery of the syntax and grammar depends on early acquisition - bilingual children show superior cognitive processing over monolingual ppl and, show enhanced performance on tasks that require control of attention Linguistic Influences on Thinking - Whorf  linguistic relativity hypothesis  language not only influences, but determines what we are capable of thinking - linguists today disagree  say language can influence how we think, how efficiently we can categorize our experiences, and the detail we put into them - propositional thought: verbal sentences we hear in our minds - imaginal thought: consists of images we see, hear, or feel, in our mind - motoric thought: mental representations of motor movements Concepts and Propositions - much of our thinking is in the form of propositions: statements that express facts - propositions are combinations of concepts  usually one subject, one predicate - concepts: basic units of semantic memory – mental categories into which we place objects, activities, abstractions, and events - may concepts are defined by prototypes: the most typical and familiar members of the class > REASONING AND PROBLEM SOLVING Reasoning - deductive reasoning: from general principals to a conclusion  “top-down” o given a proposition, if X then Y, if X occurs, you can infer Y  syllogism - inductive reasoning: from specific facts to a general principal  “bottom-up” o certain to be correct if the premises are true, but leads to likelihood rather than certainty - belief bias: the tendency to abandon logical rules in favour of our personal belief Problem Solving Stages of Problem Solving 1. Interpret (frame) and understand the problem 2 2. Generate hypotheses or possible solutions 3. Test the solutions seeking to disconfirm one or more of them 4. Evaluate results and, if necessary, revise steps 1, 2, or 3 Problem Solving Schemas - problem-solving schemas: step-by-step scripts for selecting info and solving specialized classes of problems - experts develop schemas to guide problem solving, and are better at recognizing when to apply each schema - novices who don’t have schemas must solve problems using working memory - expertise is accompanied by alterations in brain functioning that increase processing efficiency  “expert neurons” Algorithms and Heuristics - Algorithms: formulas or procedures that automatically generate a correct solution - Heuristics: general problem solving strategies that are quick and easy similar to rules of thumb  mental shortcuts that compare the present facts with some concept or schema that seems applicable to the current situation - Means-end analysis: a heuristic  identity differences between the present situation and one’s desired state, or goal, and then make changes that will reduce these differences - Subgoal analysis: attack a large problem by formulating intermediate steps towards a solution - Representativeness heuristic: use to infer how closely something or someone fits into our prototype for a particular class, and therefore how likely it is to be a member of that class - Availability heuristic: causes us to base judgments and decisions on the availability of information in our memory Conformation Bias - Conformation bias: the tendency to look for evidence that will confirm what you currently believe, rather than looking for evidence that will disprove your beliefs > INTELLIGENCE - Intelligence: a concept, that refers to the ability to acquire knowledge, to think and reason effectively, and to deal adaptively with the environment Sir Fr
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