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Functions of the Brain.docx

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PSY 1071
Joel Sheffield

Kate Sydnes Psychology as a Natural Science September 15, 2011 Functions of the Brain I. History a. Franz Gall & phrenology (1758-1828) i. Brain was separated into specific functions 1. The more a person exercised the functions, the more the brain grows 2. Character can be determined by analyzing the bumps on a person’s head (huh…?) a. Phrenology: a psychological theory or analytical method based on the belief that certain mental faculties and character traits are indicated by the configurations of the skull II. Anatomy a. Cerebral cortex i. Wrinkled part on outside of brain, this changes the most between species ii. Frontal lobe 1. Movement/speech (left) iii.Temporal lobe 1. Hearing, face recognition, object recognition, comprehension (left) iv. Primary motor area v. Primary somatosensory area 1. If our bodies were proportional with our somatosensory cortex, we would look very strange… vi. Parietal lobe 1. Touch/sensation, spatial processing vii. Occipital lobe viii. Primary visual area ix. Primary auditory area x. Motor cortex xi. Sensory cortex 1. Reception and registration of sensory stimuli from outside and within the body 2. One map in each hemisphere for the different sides of the body! b. Cortical magnification i. The size of the area does not correspond to the size of the body part c. Subcortical structures i. Sit below the cerebral cortex 1. Brainstem a. Medulla, Pons & Midbrain b. Reflexive movement c. Regulates breathing, heart rate, sleep and arousal 2. Thalamus a. “Relay station” - all senses pass through here on the way to higher processing 3. Cerebellum a. Involved in rapid movement, timing, coordination, and balance 4. Basal Ganglia a. Slow, deliberate movement, e.g. walking, post
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