1. Sensation-Physiology the faculty of perception 16. Bottom up Processing- refers to aspects of
of stimuli. recognition that depend primarily on the brain's
2. Perception-a single unified awareness derived reception of stimulus information from sensory
from sensory processes while a stimulus is receptors
present. 17. Brightness- the luminance of a body, apart from
3. Absolute Threshold- the minimum intensity of a its hue or saturation, that an observer uses to
stimulus at which it can just be perceived determine the comparative luminance of
4. Accommodation-the automatic or voluntary another body. Pure white has the maximum
adjustment of the shape of the lens of the eye brightness, and pure black the minimum
for far or near vision brightness.
5. Acuity- keenness or acuteness, esp in vision or 18. Cochlea- a spiral-shaped cavity forming a
thought the capacity of the eye to see fine division of the internal ear in humans and in
detail, measured by determining the finest most other mammals.
detail that can just be detected. 19. Cochlea Implant- is a surgically implanted
6. Audition-the act, sense, or power of hearing. electronic device that provides a sense of sound
7. Amacrine Cells- are interneurons in the retina. to a person who is profoundly deaf or severely
Amacrine cells are responsible for 70% of input hard of hearing.
to retinal ganglion cells. Bipolar cells, which are 20. Color constancy- the tendency for a color to
responsible for the other 30% of input to retinal look the same under widely different viewing
ganglia, are regulated by amacrine cells. conditions
8. Ambiguity- the possibility of interpreting an 21. Complementary colors- the relationship of
expression in two or more distinct ways these pairs of colors perceived as completing or
9. Attention-a concentration of the mind on a enhancing each other.
single object or thought, especially one 22. Cones- one of the cone-shaped cells in the
preferentially selected from a complex, with a retina of the eye, sensitive to color and intensity
view to limiting or clarifying receptivity by of light.
narrowing the range of stimuli. 23. Convergence- a coordinated turning of the eyes
10. Auditory Cortex- The region of the cerebral to bear upon a near point.
cortex that receives auditory data from the 24. Cutaneous Senses- the faculty by which external
medial geniculate body. objects or forces are perceived through contact
11. Auditory Nerve- either one of the eighth pair of with the body (especially the hands); "only sight
cranial nerves, consisting of sensory fibers that and touch enable us to locate objects in the
conduct impulses from the organs of hearing space around.
and from the semicircular canals to the brain. 25. Dark adaptation- the reflex adaptation of the
12. Basilar Membrane- a supporting membrane, eye to dim light, consisting of a dilatation of the
especially the membrane that supports the pupil and an increase in the number of
organ of Corti in the ear and aids in translating functioning rods accompanied by a decrease in
sound vibrations into electrical signals. the number of functioning cones ( opposed to
13. Binocular Cue- depth perception cues that light adaptation).
require input from the two eyes. 26. Depth perception- the ability of an observer to
14. Binocular Cells- A neuron having two processes. judge the spatial relationships of objects,
15. Blind Spot- a small area on the retina that is especially their relative distance from the
insensitive to light due to the interruption, observer and from one another.
where the optic nerve joins the retina, of the 27. Dichotic listening- In cognitive psychology,
normal pattern of light-sensitive rods and cones. dichotic listening is a procedure commonly used
to investigate selective attention in the auditory 44. Horizontal Cells- The cells that integrate
system. information across the retina; rather than
28. Difference Threshold- the minimum difference sending signals toward the brain, horizontal cells
connect receptors to each other.
between two stimuli that is just detectable by a
45. Hue- The dimension of color space that captures
person. the qualitative experience of the color of a light.
29. Distal Stimuli- In the processes of perception, the 46. Identification and recognition- something you
physical object in the world, as contrasted with learned previously and is therefore stored in
the proximal stimulus, the optical image on the some manner in memory.
retina. 47. Inner Ear-innermost part of the ear, containing
30. ESP- (Extrasensory perception) Communication the cochlea, semicircular canals and vestibular
or perception by means other than the physical sacs.
senses. 48. Intensity- light and sound waves. High amplitude
31. Farsightedness-Able to see distant objects better (large wave) the greater the intensity.
than objects at close range. 49. Inattentional blindness- (Perceptual blindness)
32. Feature Detectors- Cells in the cortex that failure by a person to notice some stimulus that
specializes in extracting certain features of a is in plain sight.
stimulus. 50. Illusion- An experience of a stimulus pattern in a
33. Figure/Ground- a property of perception in manner that is demonstrably incorrect but
which there is a tendency to see parts of a visual shared by others in the same perceptual
field as solid, well- defined objects standing out environment.
against a less distinct background. 51. Iris- ring of muscle tissue that, responsible for
34. Fovea- The tiny area of sharpest vision in the controlling the size of the pupil opening.
retina. 52. Lens- behind the pupil, changes shape to try to
35. Frequency Theory- The theory that a tone focus on something. It accommodates and
produces a rate of vibration in the basilar focuses on the incoming light onto the back of
membrane equal to its frequency, with the result the eye.
that pitch can be coded by the frequency of the 53. Just Noticeable Difference (JND)- difference
neural response. threshold, minimum difference in stimulation
36. Ganglion Cells- Cells in the visual system that that a person can detect 50 percent of the ime.
integrate impulses from many bipolar cells in a 54. Kinesthetic Sense- Sense concerned with bodily
single firing rate. position and movement of the body parts
37. Gate-Control Theory- Theory that afferent relative to each other.
stimuli, especially pain, entering the substantia 55. Lightness Constancy- The tendency to perceive
gelatinosa, are modulated so that transmission the whiteness, grayness, or blackness of objects
to neurons is blocked by inhibitory agents. as constant across changing levels of illumination.
38. Gestalt psychology- A school of psychology that 56. Loudness- A perceptual dimension of sound
maintains that psychological phenomena can be influenced by the amplitude of a sound wave;
understood only when viewed as organized, sound waves with large amplitudes are generally
structured wholes, not when broken down into experienced as loud and those with small
primitive perceptual elements. amplitudes as soft.
39. Goal Directed Selection- A determinant of why 57. Middle Ear: Middle Ear refers to the space
people select some parts of sensory input for between the eardrum and the inner ear, where
further processing; it reflects the choices made three tiny bones (also known as ossicles) are
as a function of one's own goals. located and named based on their shapes: the
40. Grouping-Organizing stimuli into some coherent malleus, meaning hammer, the incus or anvil and
groups. Categorize things. the stapes or stirrup. When sound waves vibrate
41. Ground-The backdrop or background areas of on the surface of the eardrum, the bones
the visual field, against which figures stand out. transmit those movements to the inner ear. The
42. Hearing Loss (Conduction)- due to a defect of the fluid and surfaces of the inner ear send the
sound conducting apparatus. vibrations as signals to the auditory nerves and
43. Sensorineural-that due to a defect in the inner we can then "hear" the sound.
ear or the acoustic nerve.
58. Nearsightedness: An eye condition where one prior experience. Writers sometimes use this
cannot see objects clearly from afar. For example, concept in movie scripts in a humorous scene.
if you are nearsighted you will be able to read
these words without any difficulty but you may 66. Phi Phenomenon: Ah Christmas, such a warm,
have trouble seeing a stop sign a block away. family-oriented, wonderful time. And a time of
59. pheromone: A chemical secreted by an animal, visual illusion! One such visual illusion is the phi
especially an insect, that influences the behavior phenomenon in which lights next to each other
or development of others of the same species, blinking on and off in succession appear to
often functioning as an attractant of the actually move. For example, a string of lights
opposite sex. across a house appear to "run" even though you
60. Optic Nerve: The optic nerve is one of the twelve know it's just one light turning off and the one
cranial nerves. The optic nerve is behind the next to it turning on and so on down the line.
eyeball and transmits visual information to the 67. Psychophysics: Fechner started this area of
brain. psychology that addresses the relationship
61. Parallel Processing: Parallel processing is the between psychological experiences and physical
ability of the brain to do many things (aka, energy. A psychophysicist might look at the
processes) at once. For example, when a person speed at which electrical impulses travel from
sees an object, they don't see just one thing, but the brain to the limbs, or how we perceive
rather many different aspects that together help different light waves.
the person identify the object as a whole. For 68. Retina: The retina is the area in back of the eye
example, you may see the colors red, black, and that contains your rods and cones. Rods help you
silver. These colors alone may not mean too detect movement while cones help you see color.
much, but if you also see shapes such as Both of these receptors transfer light into
rectangles, circles, and curved shapes, your brain electrical impulses so that your brain can
may perceive all the elements simultaneously, interpret them.
put them together and identify it as a car. Note 69. Retinal Disparity: Did you know that the image
that motion and depth of the object can also be your left eye perceives is not exactly the same as
perceived. These cues processed in the brain tell the image your right eye perceives? If you cover
the person that the red car is headed straight at your left eye and look straight ahead, you will
them so they jump out of the way. Without not be able to see anything in the left peripheral
parallel processing, the brain would have to area. In contrast, if you cover your right eye and
process each aspect of the car separately in continue looking straight ahead, you will not see
progression. By the time the person identified in the right peripheral area. Each eye receives a
the car, it would be too late. slightly different perspective or image, however,
62. Parapsychology: Parapsychology refers to the a person does not see two seperate images. The
study of paranormal phenomenon, i.e. images overlap in the center, and the brain
occurrences that appear to violate scientific laws. connects these together into one seamless view.
in some cases, people who experience Thus, Retinal Disparity is the difference between
paranormal phenomenon may be considered the visual images that each eye perceives
mentally ill or delusional - but Parapsychologists because of the different angles in which each
would not agree with that in all cases. Instead, eye views the world. Retinal disparity is
parapsychologists believe these experiences can important for depth perception. Diplopia,
be transforming and healing to those who have meaning "double vision," occurs if a person sees
them. two images in their visual field instead of one
63. Perception: The process in which we understand seamless image.
sensory information. 70. Rods: There are two types of receptor cells in the
64. Perceptual Constancy: Perceptual constancy is human eye; the cones and the rods. The rods are
the ability to recognize that an object or the receptors in the eye which detect movement.
organism has not changed (remained the same Rods are also used in night vision.
object or organism) even though other stimuli 71. Selective Attention: I've always been somewhat
have changed. bothered by this term because it seems
65. Perceptual Set: This is the expectation of a somewhat redundant to me...see what you think.
person to see or perceive something based on Selective attention is purposely focusing your
conscious awareness onto a specific stimulus. 86. Sensation: can be defined as the neural synaptic
This means that if you are in a noisy place with firing of our receptors and our brain's
lots of people and you purposely pay attention interpretation of these firings
to the person you are speaking with, you are 87. sensory adaption: which is reduced sensitivity to
engaging in selective attention. Easy enough, stimulation that results from repeated
right? So how is this different from "paying presentations of that stimulation.
attention" or simply "attention"? I know there 88. sensory receptors: part of a sensory neuron or
are subtle differences, but it seems redundant to cell (and possibly associated cells) that receives
me. information from the world and relates it to your
72. Monocular Clues: Cues of depth that can be nervous system.
detected by one eye instead of two. For example, 89. set: et point is a theory that states everyone's
size is a monocular clue. One doesn't need two body has a genetically determined range of
eyes to tell how large an object is, and because weight and temperature that their body will try
of its size, how close it is perceived to be. to maintain to stay at optimal health
73. Neurotransmitter: A neurotransmitter is a 90. shape constancy: he tendency to perceive the
chemical messenger that carries signals between shape of a rigid object as constant despite
neurons as well as other cells in the body. These differences in the viewing angle (and consequent
chemicals are released from the end of one differences in the shape of the pattern projected
neuron and cross the synapse to receptor sites in on the retina of the eye)
the next neuron. While scientists are not quite 91. signal detection theory: Signal Detection Theory
sure exactly how many neurotransmitters exist, holds that the detection of a stimulus depends
more than 100 have been identified. Certain on both the intensity of the stimulus and the
diseases, including Alzheimer's and Parkinson's, physical and psychological state of the
are associated with problems with specific individual."
chemical messengers. 92. size constancy: the tendency to perceive the
74. olfactory bulb- a bulb-shaped brain structure veridical size of a familiar object despite
derived from the telencephalon that receives differences in their distance (and consequent
input from olfactory receptor neurons differences in the size of the pattern projected
75. Opponent Process Theory: A theory suggested by on the retina of the eye)
Solomon where emotional reactions to a 93. sound location: A method for locating a source
stimulus are followed by opposite emotional of sound, such as an enemy gun, by measuring
reactions. This theory may explain why stunt the travel time of the sound wave to
people enjoy their work. First the individual will microphones at known positions.
feel intense anxiety before performing a stunt 94. subliminal: As humans, we have great abilities to
and then the person will receive an opposite perceive things (e.g., to see things happening far
reaction of relief after the stunt is completed. away, to hear sounds at a distance, etc.).
The theory also postulates that repeated 95. Timbre: he combination of qualities of a sound
exposure to the stimulus will cause less of an that distinguishes it from other sounds of the
initial reaction and a stronger opposing reaction. same pitch and volume.
This may explain why drugs, such as opiates, give 96. Top Down processing:
diminishing returns after prolonged use yet the 97. Transduction: process of converting one form of
effects of withdraw become more intensified energy into another. As it relates to psychology,
and unpleasant. transduction refers to changing physical energy
76. photoreceptor: A nerve ending, cell, or group of into electrical signals (neural impusles) that can
cells specialized to sense or receive light. make their way to the brain
85. Saturation: This is an operant conditioning 100. Trichromatic Theory: ision assumes that people
principle in which an organism is reinforced every inherit a separate gene for each of the three
single time that organism provides the appropriate photopigments.
operant response. 101. Visual capture: refers to our tendency to allow
85. Selective attention: purposely focusing your visual images to dominate our perception.
conscious awareness onto a specific stimulus. 102. Visual cliff: test given to infants to see if they
have developed depth perception.
103. vestibular sense: a sensory system located in
structures of the inner ear that registers the
orientation of the head
104. visual cortex: the cortical area that receives
information from the lateral geniculate body of
105. volley principle: the organ of corti in the cochlea
that transduces the sound into action potentials
must combine multiple stimuli along the
cochlear nerve within a volley in order to encode
high frequency auditory stimuli.
106. Weber’s law: claims that humans’ perception
and response to the intensity fluctuation of
visual signals are weighted by the background
stimulus u, instead of being plainly uniform.
107. synaptic peptides: self is essential to the
integrity of any multicellular organism or organ
108. absolute threshold: smallest intensity of a
stimulus that has to be present for the stimulus
to be detected.
109. JND: smallest difference in a specified modality
of sensory input that is detectable by a human
being. It is also known as the difference limen or
the differential threshold.
110. Response Bias: type of cognitive bias which can
affect the results of a statistical survey if
respondents answer questions in the way they
think the questioner wants them to answer
rather than according to their true beliefs
111. Amplitude: the magnitude of change in the
oscillating variable with each oscillation within
an oscillating system.
112. Additive color: model involves light emitted
directly from a source or illuminant of some sort.
The additive reproduction process usually uses
red, green and blue light to produce the other
113. Subtractive color: explains the mixing of paints,
dyes, inks, and natural colorants to create a full
range of colors, each caused by subtracting (that
is, absorbing) some wavelengths of light and
reflecting the others.
114. Flavor: is the sensory impression of a food or
other substance, and is determined mainly by
the chemical senses of taste and smell.