PSY 202 Chapter Notes - Chapter 1: Cognitive Neuroscience, Mental Chronometry, Abraham Maslow

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Chapter 1: The Science of Psychology
1.1 What Is Psychological Science?
Psychology involves the study of mental activity and behavior
Psychological science is the study, through research, of mind, brain, and behavior
Mind refers to mental activity; ex: sights, smells, tastes, sounds, touches
Behavior refers to the totality of observable human or animal interactions; ex: eating,
drinking, performing surgery
Mental activity results from biological processes of the brain
Study of mental activity=understanding human behavior
amiable skepticism-allows you to be open to new idea but wary when scientific findings
fail to support
Critical thinking is the ability to systematically question and evaluate information using
well-supported evidence
Requires: looking for holes in evidence, using logic and reasoning to see whether the
information makes sense, and considering alternative explanations. It also requires
considering whether the information might be biased
Biases you encounter in Psychological reading-
-Ignoring evidence (confirmation bias)
-Failing to accurately judge source credibility
- Misunderstanding or not using statistics
-Seeing relationships that do not exist
-Using relative comparisons
- Accepting after-the-fact explanations
- Taking mental shortcuts
-Failing to see our own inadequacies (self-serving bias)
1.2 What Are the Scientific Foundations of Psychology?
Why Humans act a certain way...
Nature: biologically innate
Nuture: they acquired through education, experience, and culture
Culture: the beliefs, values, rules, norms, and customs existing within a group of people
who share a common language and environment
Nature/Nurture debate: The arguments concerning whether psychological
characteristics are biologically innate or acquired through education, experience, and
culture
Mind/Body problem: A fundamental psychological issue: Are mind and body separate
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Document Summary

Psychology involves the study of mental activity and behavior. Psychological science is the study, through research, of mind, brain, and behavior. Mind refers to mental activity; ex: sights, smells, tastes, sounds, touches. Behavior refers to the totality of observable human or animal interactions; ex: eating, drinking, performing surgery. Mental activity results from biological processes of the brain. Amiable skepticism-allows you to be open to new idea but wary when scientific findings fail to support. Critical thinking is the ability to systematically question and evaluate information using well-supported evidence. Requires: looking for holes in evidence, using logic and reasoning to see whether the information makes sense, and considering alternative explanations. It also requires considering whether the information might be biased. Failing to see our own inadequacies (self-serving bias) Nuture: they acquired through education, experience, and culture. Culture: the beliefs, values, rules, norms, and customs existing within a group of people who share a common language and environment.

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