Chapter 4 Review



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Chapter 4 Review




  1. Vision

  1. Wavelength (Hue)

  1. Amplitude

  • Height of wave

  • Perception of brightness

  • The taller the brighter

  1. Purity

  • Mixture of wavelengths that create color

  1. Cornea

  • Transparent window of the eye.

  • Outer layer

  1. Lens

  • Changes shape to help focus near or far objects on the retina

  1. Iris

  • Colored muscle around the ring that constricts or dilates w/ light

  • Contracts to change size of pupil for light

  1. Pupil

  • Amount of light controls size of pupil by constricting to let in less light

  1. Retina

  • transduction

  • Ambassador to the central nervous system

  • Absorbs light, processes images and sends information to the brain

  1. Optic disk

  • Hole in the retina where the optic nerve fibers exit the eye

  • Considered the “blind spot” of the eye (you cannot see the part of the image that falls on it)




  1. Optic nerve

  • Fibers that sends the message to the brain

  1. Rods

  1. Cones

  • Color and daylight vision

  • 5 – 6.4 million

  • Generate neural signals that then activate bipolar cells

  1. Light

  • Electromagnetic radiation

  • Emitted from energy (sun, light bulbs)

  1. Nearsightedness

  • Can see from near

  • Focus falls short of the retina

  1. Farsightedness

  • Can see from far

  • Focus lands past the retina

  1. Receptive fields

  • Where rods and cones are located

  • When stimulated they funnel signals to a particular visual cell in the retina

  1. Lateral antagonism

  • Send sideways to other cells

  • Occurs when neural activity in a cell opposes activity in surrounding cells

  1. Monocular & binocular cues

  • Binocular Disparity: The closer an object gets to the eyes, the greater the difference is in the image that is seen of that object.

  • Monocular: one eye binocular: two eyes.

  • Perception of depth is distorted with one eye and is better measured when two eyes give cues.

  • Depth perception involves interpretation of visual cues that indicate how near or far away objects are

  1. Retinal disparity

  • Images are sent to slightly different locations of the right and left eye, so right and left eyes see different views

  • The closer you get to an object, the greater the disparity b/w images seen by both eyes

  1. Size constancy

  • The ability to perceive things as their actual size even when your retinal image gets smaller

  1. Convergence

  • Sensing the eyes converging toward each other as they focus on closer objects

  1. Vision acuity

  • Involved in sharpness and precise detail in vision

  • Greatest in the fovea (which is a tiny spot in the center of the retina that only contains cones)

  • Cones provide better visual acuity than rods but rods provide some as well




  1. Hearing

  1. Wavelength

  • Pitch

  • Measured by cycles per second. Higher the frequency, the higher the pitch

  1. Amplitude

  • Loudness

  • Measured with decibel levels

  • Higher, louder

  1. Purity

  • Combination of qualities of a sound that distinguish it from other sounds of the same pitch & volume

  1. Pinna

  1. Hammer, anvil, stirrup

  • Middle ear

  • Tiniest bones in body

  • Vibration of bones creates sound

  • Transfer sound from the tympanic membrane to the oval window

  1. Middle ear

  • Same as above

  1. Cochlea

  • Inner ear

  • Waves in the fluid stimulate hair cells

  • Contains auditory receptors

  • Tube like structure

  1. Semicircular canals

  • Influences balance

  1. Auditory pathway

  • See all 6 steps in notes

  1. Intensity

  • loudness

  1. Timing

  • Shadow heard in each ear




  1. Other senses

  1. Gustation

  1. Taste pathway

  • Absorb chemicals, trigger neural impulses and send the info to the thalamas and on to the cortex



  1. Primary tastes

  • Sweet, sour, bitter and salty. (5th taste is umami)

  1. Nontasters vs supertasters

  • Supertasters are much more sensitive to certain sweet and bitter tastes. 25% of people fall into this category. Tend to more negatively toward alcohol and smoking which reduces their chances of developing a drinking problem or addiction to nicotine. (more likely women than men)

  • Nontasters make up 25% of the population and have have about ¼ the taste buds as supertasters

  • The other 50% of the population are “medium tasters”

  1. Olfaction

  • Sense of smell

  • Located in the upper portion of the nasal passage

  • Receptors have synapse set up straight to the base of the brain. (only sense to skip the thalamus)

  • Humans can identify 10,000 odors but have a hard time attaching names to odors

  1. Pathway of smell

  • Olfactory cilia- neural impulse- olfactory nerve – olfactory bulb

  1. Temperature

  • Registered by free nerve endings in the skin. Receptors specific to hot and cold temperatures

  1. Pain receptors

  • Registered in free nerve endings

  • Two path ways: fast and slow.

  1. Kinesthetic

  • Knowing the position of the various parts of the body

  • Receptors lie in the joints and muscles

  • Taste is a learned sense and is also social (you eat things because of your environment and what is socially acceptable in your culture)




  1. Vestibular

  • Keeps you informed of your bodys location in space

  • equilibrium




  1. Perception

  1. Reversible figure

  • A drawing that is made to have two interpretations

  • Same visual points can result in radically different perceptions

  1. Perceptual sets

  • A readiness to perceive a stimuli in a particular way

  • Creates a certain bias in someone

  • Can change someone’s perception by altering expectations

  1. Inattentional blindness

  • Failure to see visible objects or events because ones attention is somewhere else

  1. Top- down processing (aka form perception theory b/c we process actual form first then features)

  • Assemble visible input into a more complex form

  1. Bottom-up processing (aka feature detection theory b/c we process features first)

  • A progression from the individual elements to the whole

  1. Subjective contours

  • Perception of contours where none actually exist

  1. Gesalt principles:

  1. Figure-ground

  • figures have more shape and appear to be closer, stand out in front of background

  1. Proximity

  1. Similarity

  • Group elements of stimuli that are smaller

  1. Continuity

  • Group “smooth paths”

  1. Closure

  • Complete figures that actually have gaps in them

  1. Simplicity

  • Group elements in the most simplest form

  1. Perceptual hypothesis & how context plays a role

  • When you look at something you develop a perceptual hypothesis based on prior knowledge

  • We use context in which something appears to guide our hypothesis

  1. Perceptual constancy

  • tendency to experience a stable perception in the face of continually changing sensory input; people tend to view objects as having a stable size, shape, brightness, hue, and texture

  1. Motion parallax

  • Cue to depth that involves images of objects at different distances moving across the retina at different rates

  • Things that are closer appear to be moving more or moving faster than objects further away

  1. Pictorial depth cues

  • Clues about distance in a flat picture

  1. Optical illusions

  • Visual appearance seems different even though physical reality is actually the same

  1. Motion aftereffect

  • After focusing on an image, you continue to see the image when it is removed



  1. Names

  1. Fechner

  • Came up with the concept of threshold

  1. Weber

  • Webers law: size of JND proportional to size of initial stimuli

  1. Hubel & Weisel

  • Discovered that visual cortex has detectors (cortical cells) in it, neurons that respond selectively to very specific features of stimuli such as lines and edges

  1. Hermann von Helmholtz

  • Place theory

  • Proposed that perception of pitch corresponds to the vibration of different portion of the basilar membrane

  1. Rutherford

  • Frequency theory

  • Perception of pitch corresponds to the rate or frequency at which the entire basilar membrane vibrates causing the auditory nerve to fire at different rates for different frequencies

  1. Georg von Bekesy

  • Claimed both theories above are valid. Membrane does move, but the waves peak at particular places of the membrane depending on the frequency.

  1. E.G Boring

  • Reversible figure

  1. Walk & Gibson

  • Visual cliff

  • Concept of perceiving depth

  • When do we identify that something has depth and is dangerous? This was what his experiment was about

  1. V.I. Ramachandran




  1. Key terms

  1. Sensation

  • Stimulation of sensory organs

  1. Threshold

  • Dividing point b/w energy levels that do and do not have a detectable effect

  • What is the weakest detectable stimuli?

  1. Absolute Threshold

  • Minimum stimulus intensity that an organism can detect.

  • Detected 50% of the time

  • Created by Gustav Fechner

  • Adapts to your environment in order to sense harm.

  1. Just noticeable difference

  • Smallest difference detected

  • People who can detect smallest difference are known as experts

  1. Signal detection theory

  • Study of peoples tendencies to make correct judgments in detecting the presence of stimuli

  • Responses will depend on your standard you set for how sure you must feel before you react

  • Decision can be thrown off due to other factors i.e. Alcohol, fatigue, drugs

  1. Subliminal perception

  • Registration of sensory input without conscious awareness

  • Example drive in movie with “eat popcorn” in background had popcorn sales raise by 58%

  1. Mere-exposure effect

  • Develop a positive attitude toward a product that has been advertised repeatedly in the media

  1. Sensory adaptation

  • Decline in sensitivity to prolonged stimuli

  • Adapt in order to identify threats

  1. Trichromatic theory

  • Three color receptors; red, green and blue

  1. Opponent Process Theory

  • Said we need yellow to form all colors

  • Three receptors…one receptor is for red and green, one is for blue and yellow, and other is black and white

  • If one wavelength is being picked up by receptor the other colors wavelength is blocked off. Example if picking up red wavelength, you cannot pick up green

  1. Phi phenomenon(Apparent motion)

  • The illusion of motion due to the flashing of lights in a continuous pattern.

  1. Vestibular sense

  • monitors balance in response to movement detected by the proprioceptors.

  • The vestibular sense receives information from the semicircular canals and the vestibular sacs, located in the ear.

  • The semicircular canals and vestibular sacs are filled with fluid and lined with hair cells that response to movement and changes in the body.





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