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Sensation and Perception Introduction to Psychology Spring 2011 J. Hawkins, Ed.D., MSW Larkin High School.

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Presentation on theme: "Sensation and Perception Introduction to Psychology Spring 2011 J. Hawkins, Ed.D., MSW Larkin High School."— Presentation transcript:

1 Sensation and Perception Introduction to Psychology Spring 2011 J. Hawkins, Ed.D., MSW Larkin High School

2 Sensation and Perception Measuring the Sensory Experience Sensation Perception Extrasensory Perception

3 §Sensation l The processes by which our sense organs receive information from the environment. §Transduction l The process by which physical energy is converted into sensory neural impulses. §Perception l The processes by which people select, organize, and interpret sensations. Sensation and Perception

4 Sensation & Perception Processes

5 §Psychophysics l The study of the relationship between physical stimulation and subjective sensations. §Signal-Detection Theory l The theory that detecting a stimulus is jointly determined by the signal and the subject’s response criterion. Measuring Sensory Experience Research and Theory

6 §Absolute Threshold l The smallest amount of stimulation that can be detected. §Just Noticeable Difference (JND) l The smallest amount of change in a stimulus that can be detected. Measuring Sensory Experience Thresholds

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

8 §Vision §Hearing §Other Senses §Keeping the Signals Straight Sensation

9 Vision The Electromagnetic Spectrum

10 Vision Structures of the Human Eye

11 §Cornea l Clear outer membrane that bends light to focus it in the eye. §Pupil l The hole in the iris through which light passes. §Lens l The structure that focuses light on the retina. Vision Structures of the Human Eye

12 The rear of the eye where rods and cones convert light into neural impulses. Vision The Retina

13 §Optic Nerve Pathway that carries visual information from the eyeball to the brain. Vision Visual Pathways

14 §Some cells in the visual cortex respond only to certain types of visual information, for example, a diagonal line moving up and down. §These cells are called feature detectors. Vision Hubel & Wiesel’s Experiment

15 §T. Young (1802) & H. von Helmholtz (1852) both proposed that the eye detects 3 primary colors: red, blue, & green. §All other colors can be derived by combining these three. Vision Trichromatic Theory

16 Vision Afterimage

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18 §Spectral colors vary from violet-blue to red l 470 to 700 nanometer wavelength §Opponent colors are directly across from each other on the wheel. Vision The Color Wheel

19 Vision Test of Color Deficiency

20 l Color vision is derived from three pairs of opposing receptors. The opponent colors are blue and yellow, red and green, and black and white. §Theory explains afterimages and color deficiency. Vision Opponent-Process Theory

21 Audition The sense of hearing Hearing The Human Ear

22 l 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

23 §Conduction Hearing Loss l Caused by damage to the eardrum or bones in the middle ear. §Sensorineural Hearing Loss l Caused by damage to the structures of the inner ear. Hearing Hearing Disabilities

24 Hearing Common Sounds and the Noise They Produce

25 Structures responsible for the sense of smell Other Senses Olfactory System

26 l Nets of taste-receptor cells §This is a photograph of tongue 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 Buds

27 Other Senses Sensitivity to Touch

28 Temperature §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 The Thermal Grill

29 Pain §Gate-control Theory l Theory that the spinal cord contains a neurological “gate”that blocks pain signals for the brain when flooded by competing signals. §Psychological control l Mind over sensation, distraction Other Senses

30 Coordination §Kinesthetic System l Structures distributed throughout body that sense position and movement of body parts. §Vestibular System l The inner ear and brain structures that afford a sense of equilibrium. Other Senses

31 §Synesthesia l Rare condition in which stimulation in one sensory modality triggers sensations in another sensory modality. §Each sensory system designed to operate separately from the others. §Selective Adaptation l A decline in sensitivity to a stimulus as a result of constant exposure. Keeping the Signals Straight

32 §Perceptual Organization §Perceptual Constancies §Depth and Dimension §Perceptual Set §The World of Illusions Perception

33 l Drawings that one can perceive in different ways by reversing figure and ground. §Gestalt Psychology l School of thought rooted in the idea that the whole is different from the sum of its parts. Perceptual Organization Reversible Figures

34 §Proximity l Seeing 3 pair of lines in A §Similarity l Seeing columns of orange and red dots in B §Continuity l Seeing lines that connect 1 to 2 and 3 to 4 in C §Closure l Seeing a horse in D Perceptual Organization Gestalt Laws of Grouping

35 §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

36 §Size Constancy l The tendency to view an object as constant in size despite changes in the size of the retinal image. §Shape Constancy l The tendency to see an object as keeping its form despite changes in orientation. Perceptual Constancies

37 Perceptual Constancies The Ames Room §A specially-built room that makes people seem to change size as they move around in it §The room is not a rectangle, as viewers assume it is. §A single peephole prevents using binocular depth cues.

38 §Even though these images cast shadows of different shapes, they still are seen as round. Perceptual Constancies Shape Constancy

39 §Depth Perception l The use of visual cues to estimate depth and distance. §Convergence l A binocular cue involving the turning inward of the eyes as an object gets closer. §Binocular Disparity l A binocular cue whereby the closer an object is, the more different the image is in each retina. Depth and Dimension

40 l 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

41 §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 they can crawl. Depth and Dimension The Visual Cliff

42 §What is seen in the center figures depends on the order in which one looks at the figures: l If scanned from the left, a man’s face is seen. l If scanned from the right, a woman’s figure is seen. Perceptual Set

43 §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

44 l 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

45 l Illusion in which the perceived line length is affected by linear perspective cues. §Side lines seem to converge §Top line seems farther away l But the retinal images of the red lines are equal. The World of Illusions The Ponzo Illusion

46 §The Case for ESP §The Case against ESP §The Continuing Controversy Extrasensory Perception

47 §Extrasensory Perception (ESP) l The ability to perceive something without ordinary sensory information. l This has not been scientifically demonstrated. §Parapsychologists distinguish between three types of ESP: l Telepathy – Mind-to-mind communication l Clairvoyance – Perception of remote events l Precognition – Ability to see future events The Case for ESP

48 §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

49 §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


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