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Psych Ch 3 Vocab

Sensation and Perception

QuestionAnswer
sensation the experience of sensory stimulation
perception the process of creating meaningful patterns from raw sensory information
receptor cell a specialized cell that responds to a particular type of energy
absolute threshold the least amount of energy that can be detected as a stimulation 50 percent of the time
adaptation an adjustment of the senses to the level of stimulation they are receiving
difference threshold (just noticeable difference - jnd) the smallest change in stimulation that can be detected 50 percent of the time
Weber's law the principle that the jnd for any given sense is a constant fraction or proportion of the stimulation being judged
cornea the transparent protective coating over the front part of the eye
pupil a small opening in the iris through which light enters the eye
iris the colored part of the eye
lens the transparent part of the eye inside the pupil that focuses light onto the retina
retina the lining of the eye containing receptor cells that are sensitive to light
blind spot the place on the retina where the axons of all the ganglion cells leave the eye and where there are no receptors
fovea the area of the retina that is the center of the visual field
light the small segment of the electromagnetic spectrum to which our eyes are sensitive
rods receptor cells in the retina responsible for night vision and perception of brightness
cones receptor cells in the retina responsible for color vision
bipolar cells neurons that have only one axon and one dendrite; in the eye, these neurons connect the receptors on the retina to the ganglion cells
visual acuity the ability to distinguish fine details visually
dark adaptation increased sensitivity of rods and cones in darkness
light adaptation decreased sensitivity of rods and cones in bright light
afterimage sense experience that occurs after a visual stimulus has been removed
ganglion cells neurons that connect the bipolar cells in the eyes to the brain
optic nerve the bundle of axons of ganglion cells that carries neural messages from each eye to the brain
optic chiasm the point near the base of the brain where some fibers in the optic nerve from each eye cross to the other side of the brain
feature detectors specialized brain cells that only respond to particular elements in the visual field such as movement or lines of specific orientation
hue the aspect of color that corresponds to names such as red, green, and blue
saturation the vivdness of richness of a hue
brightness the nearness of a color to white as opposed to black
subtractive color mixing the process of mixing pigments, each of which absorbs some wavelengths of light and reflects others
additive color mixing the process of mixing light of different wavelengths to create new hues
trichromatic theory the theory of color vision that holds that all color perception derives from three different color receptors in the retina (usually red, green, and blue receptors)
trichromats people who have normal color vision
color blindness partial or total inability to perceive hues
dichromats people who are blind to either red-green or yellow-blue
monochromats people who are totally color-blind
opponent-process theory theory of color vision that holds that three sets of color receptors (yellow-blue, red-green, black-white) respond to determine the color you experience
sound a psychological experience created by the brain in response to changes in air pressure that are received by the auditory system
sound waves changes in pressure caused when molecules of air or fluid collide with one another and then move apart again
frequency the number of cycles per second in a wave; in sound, the primary determinant of pitch
hertz (Hz) cycles per second; unit of measurement for the frequency of sound waves
pitch auditory experience corresponding primarily to frequency of sound vibrations, resulting in a higher or lower tone
amplitude the magnitude of a wave; in sound, the primary determinant of loudness
decibel unit of measurement for the loudness of sounds
overtones tones that result from sound waves that are multiples of the basic tone; primary determinant of timbre
timbre the quality or texture of sound; caused by overtones
hammer, anvil, stirrup the three small bones in the middle ear that relay vibrations of the eardrum to the inner ear
oval window membrane across the opening between the middle ear and inner ear that conducts vibrations to the cochlea
basilar membrane vibrating membrane in the cochlea of the inner ear; it contains sense receptors for sounds
organ of Corti structure on the surface of the basilar membrane that contains that receptor cells for hearing
place theory theory that pitch is determined by the location of greatest vibration on the basilar membrane
frequency theory theory that pitch is determined by the frequency with which hair cells in the cochlea fire
volley principle refinement of the frequency theory; it suggests that receptors in the ear fire in sequence, with one group responding, that a second, third, and co on, so that the complete pattern of firing corresponds to the frequency of the sound wave
olfactory epithelium nasal membranes containing receptor cells sensitive to odors
olfactory bulb the smell center in the brain
pheromones chemical molecules that communicate information to other members of a species, and influence their behavior
vomeronasal organ (VNO) location of receptors for pheromones in the roof of the nasal cavity
taste buds structures on the tongue that contain the receptor cells for taste
papillae small bumps on the tongue that contain the taste buds
kinesthetic senses senses of muscle movement, posture, and strain on muscles and joint
stretch receptors receptors that sense muscle stretch and contraction
golgi tendon organs receptors that sense movement of the tendons, which connect muscle to bone
vestibular senses the sense of equilibrium and body position in space
vestibular sacs sacs in the inner ear that sense gravitation and forward, backward, and vertical movement
gate control theory the theory that a "neurological gate" in the spinal cord controls the transmission of pain messages to the brain
biopsychosocial theory the theory that the interaction of biological, psychological, and cultural factors influence the intensity and duration of pain
placebo effect pain relief that occurs when a person believe a pill or procedure will reduce pain; the actual cause of relief seems to come from endorphins
figure entity perceived to stand apart from the background
ground background against which a figure appears
perceptual constancy a tendency to perceive objects as stable and unchanging despite changes in sensory stimulation
size constancy the perception of an object as the the same size regardless of the distance from which it is viewed
shape constancy a tendency to see an object as the same shape no matter what angle it is viewed from
color constancy an inclination to perceive familiar objects as retaining their color despite changes in sensory information
monocular cues visual cues requiring the use of one eye
binocular cues visual cues requiring the use of both eyes
aerial perspective monocular cue to distance and depth based on teh fact that more distant objects are likely to appear hazy and blurred
texture gradient monocular cue to distance and depth based on the fact that objects seen at greater distances appear to be smoother and less textured
linear perspective monocular cue to distance and depth based on the fact that two parallel lines seem to come together at the horizon
motion parallax monocular distance cue in which objects closer that the point of visual focus seem to move in the direction opposite to the viwer's moving head, and objects beyond the focus point appear to move in the same direction as the viewer's head
stereoscopic vision combination of two retinal images to give a three-dimensional perceptual experience
retinal disparity binocular distance cue based on the difference between the imagegs cast on the two retinas when both eyes are focused on the same object
convergence a visual depth cue that comes from muscles controlling eye movement as the eyes turn inward to view a nearby stimulus
monaural cue cue to sound location that requires just one ear
binaural cue cue to sound location that involves both ears working together
autokinetic illusion the perception that a stationary object is actually moving
stroboscopic motion apparent movement that results from flashing a series of still pictures in rapid succession, as in a motion picture
phi phenomenon apparent movement caused by flashing lights in sequence, as on theater marquees
perceptual illusion illusion due to misleading cues in stimuli that give rise to inaccurate or impossible perceptions
Created by: 791715400