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CHAPTER 3: Sensation and Perception Essentials of Psychology, by Saul Kassin ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing.

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Presentation on theme: "CHAPTER 3: Sensation and Perception Essentials of Psychology, by Saul Kassin ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing."— Presentation transcript:

1 CHAPTER 3: Sensation and Perception Essentials of Psychology, by Saul Kassin ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

2 Sensation and Perception Measuring the Sensory Experience Sensation Perception Extrasensory Perception Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

3 Sensation –The processes by which our sense organs receive information from the environment. Transduction –The process by which physical energy is converted into sensory neural impulses. Perception –The processes by which people select, organize, and interpret sensations. Sensation and Perception Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

4 Processes of Sensation & Perception Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

5 Psychophysics –The study of the relationship between physical stimulation and subjective sensations. Signal-Detection Theory –The theory that detecting a stimulus is jointly determined by the signal and the subject’s response criterion. Measuring Sensory Experience Research and Theory Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

6 Absolute Threshold –The smallest amount of stimulation that can be detected. Just Noticeable Difference (JND) –The smallest amount of change in a stimulus that can be detected. Measuring Sensory Experience Thresholds Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

7 Vision: A single candle flame from 30 miles on a dark, clear night Hearing: The tick of a watch from 20 feet in total quiet Smell: 1 drop of perfume in a 6-room apartment Taste: 1 teaspoon sugar in 2 gallons of water Touch: The wing of a bee on your cheek, dropped from 1 cm Measuring Sensory Experience Absolute Sensory Thresholds Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

8 Vision Hearing Other Senses Keeping the Signals Straight Sensation Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

9 Vision The Electromagnetic Spectrum Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

10 Vision Structures of the Human Eye Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

11 Cornea –Clear outer membrane that bends light to focus it in the eye. Pupil –The hole in the iris through which light passes. Lens –The structure that focuses light on the retina. Vision Structures of the Human Eye Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

12 The rear of the eye where rods and cones convert light into neural impulses. Vision The Retina Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

13 Optic Nerve Pathway that carries visual information from the eyeball to the brain. Vision Visual Pathways Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

14 Hubel and Wiesel’s experiment measured the activity of cells in a cat’s visual cortex. Cells in the visual cortex that respond only to certain types of visual information, for example, a diagonal line moving up and down, are called feature detectors. Vision Hubel & Wiesel’s Experiment Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

15 T. Young (1802) & H. von Helmholtz (1852) both proposed that the eye detects three primary colors: red, blue, & green. All other colors can be derived by combining these three. Vision Trichromatic Theory Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

16 Spectral colors vary from violet-blue to red –470 to 700 nanometer wavelength Opponent colors are directly across from each other on the wheel. Vision The Color Wheel Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

17 Vision Test of Color Deficiency Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

18 –Color vision is derived from three pairs of opposing receptors. The opponent colors are blue and yellow, red and green, and black and white. This theory explains afterimages (a visual sensation that persists after prolonged exposure to and removal of a stimulus) and color deficiency. Vision Opponent-Process Theory Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

19 Audition The sense of hearing Hearing The Human Ear Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

20 –The ability to judge from which direction a sound is coming Sounds from different directions are not identical as they arrive at left and right ears. The brain calculates a sound’s location by using differences in timing and intensity. Hearing Auditory Localization Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

21 Hearing Common Sounds and the Noise They Produce Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

22 Conduction Hearing Loss –Caused by damage to the eardrum or bones in the middle ear. Sensorineural Hearing Loss –Caused by damage to the structures of the inner ear. Hearing Hearing Disabilities Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

23 Structures responsible for the sense of smell Other Senses Olfactory System Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

24 Taste buds –Nets of taste-receptor cells This is a photograph of the tongue’s surface (top), magnified 75 times. 10,000 taste buds line the tongue and mouth. Children have more taste buds than adults do. There are four primary tastes: sweet, salty, sour, and bitter. Other Senses Taste Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

25 The Thermal Grill When a person grasps two braided water pipes – one with cold water running through it and one with warm water – the sensation is “burning hot” and painful. There are two separate pathways for warmth and cold. Other Senses Temperature Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

26 Gate-control Theory –Theory that the spinal cord contains a neurological “gate” that blocks pain signals from the brain when flooded by competing signals. Psychological control –Mind over sensation, distraction Other Senses Pain Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

27 Kinesthetic System –Structures distributed throughout body that sense position and movement of body parts. Vestibular System –The inner ear and brain structures that afford a sense of equilibrium. Other Senses Coordination Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

28 Synesthesia –Rare condition in which stimulation in one sensory modality triggers sensations in another sensory modality. Each sensory system is designed to operate separately from the others. Sensory Adaptation –A decline in sensitivity to a stimulus as a result of constant exposure. Keeping the Signals Straight Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

29 Perceptual Organization Perceptual Constancies Depth and Dimension Perceptual Set The World of Illusions Perception Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

30 –Drawings that one can perceive in different ways by reversing figure and ground. Gestalt Psychology –School of thought rooted in the idea that the whole is different from the sum of its parts. Perceptual Organization Reversible Figures Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

31 Proximity –Seeing 3 pair of lines in A Similarity –Seeing columns of orange and red dots in B Continuity –Seeing lines that connect 1 to 2 and 3 to 4 in C Closure –Seeing a horse in D Perceptual Organization Gestalt Laws of Grouping Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

32 Geons (geometric icons) are simple 3D component shapes. A limited number are stored in memory. Geons are combined to identify essential contours of objects. Perceptual Organization Identifying Objects Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

33 Size Constancy –The tendency to view an object as constant in size despite changes in the size of the retinal image. Perceptual Constancies Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

34 Depth Perception –The use of visual cues to estimate depth and distance. Convergence –A binocular cue involving the turning inward of the eyes as an object gets closer. Binocular Disparity –A binocular cue whereby the closer an object is, the more different the image is in each retina. Depth and Dimension Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

35 –Distance cues that enable the perception of depth with one eye. Relative Image Size Texture Gradient Linear Perspective Interposition Atmospheric Perspective Relative Elevation Familiarity Depth and Dimension Monocular Depth Cues Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

36 Devised by Eleanor Gibson and Richard Walk to test depth perception in infants and animals. Provides visual illusion of a cliff. Caregiver stands across the gap. Babies are not afraid until about the age that they can crawl. Depth and Dimension The Visual Cliff Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

37 What is seen in the center figures depends on the order in which one looks at the figures: –If scanned from the left, a man’s face is seen. –If scanned from the right, a woman’s figure is seen. This demonstrates the effects of one’s perceptual set. Perceptual Set Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

38 The same physical stimulus can be interpreted differently depending on perceptual set, e.g., context effects. When is the middle character the letter B and when is it the number 13? Perceptual Set Context Effects Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

39 –Illusion in which the perceived length of a line is altered by the position of other lines that enclose it The World of Illusions The Müller-Lyer Illusion Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

40 The Case for ESP The Case against ESP The Continuing Controversy Extrasensory Perception Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

41 Extrasensory Perception (ESP) –The ability to perceive something without ordinary sensory information. –This has not been scientifically demonstrated. Parapsychologists distinguish between three types of ESP: –Telepathy – Mind-to-mind communication –Clairvoyance – Perception of remote events –Precognition – Ability to see future events The Case for ESP Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

42 J. B. Rhine conducted many experiments on ESP using stimuli such as these. Rhine believed that his evidence supported the existence of ESP, but his findings were flawed.. The Case against ESP ESP Cards Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing

43 The ganzfield procedure Researchers disagree about the reliability of studies done to replicate the ganzfield test. Visit for information about the James Randi Educational Foundation’s million-dollar paranormal challenge. The Continuing Controversy Kassin, Essentials of Psychology - ©2004 Prentice Hall Publishing


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