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Psychology Cheat Sheet by


Study of Mind and Behavior

Central Tendency

Average Score
Value in the Middle
Occurs Most Frequently

Skew Distri­butiion

Positive (+) - Graph: line goes up
same mean, median, mode
Negative (-) - Graph lines goes down
different mean, median, mode



are chemicals of various kinds that travel across the synaptic gap to the next neuron, allowing the cells to talk
studies the relati­onship between mental­/brain activity
Behavioral Neuros­cience
approach to psyc links psycho­logical processes activities in nervous systems & other bodily processes
the junction or region between the axon of one neuron and the dendrites or cell body of another
Three Ways Neurot­ran­smi­tters Cleared from a Synapse
1) Via Auto Receptors
2) Reuptake
3) Enzyme Deacti­vation
Action Potential
electrical signal that travels the length of an axon to a synapse
Resting Potential
the diff. in electrical charge between the inside of a neuron's cell membrane
sensory input from the enviro­nment
Reaction Time
amt of time to response to a specifc stimulus
a type of fatty tissue, covers sections of the axons of some neurons, assisting in the rapid transm­ission of signals through the axon


if an instrument can attain the same measur­ement repeatedly when measuring the same thing
the degree to which an external even reflects a concept or idea
PNS: Peripheral Nervous System
1) Somatic Nervous System - comm. info. between voluntary muscle­s&CNS involved in coordi­nating beh.
2) Autonomic Nervous System - comm. info automa­tically to blood vessels, organs, and glands
charges particles
problem occurs when anything about a person determines inclusion in a group
Repres­enting Data
1) Graphic Repres­ent­ation - picturing
2) Descri­ptive Stats - discussing
Measures of Variab­ility
1) Range: largest value - smallest value = range
2) Standard Deviation: how much an avg. the scores differ from the mean
Indepe­ndent - being manipu­lated
Dependent - measured
Third Variable Problem
2 variables are correlated only bc each is casually related to a 3rd variable
Experi­mental - exposed to manipu­lation
Control - not exposed
Experi­mental Tools
1) Manipu­lation - changing a variable to determine its casual power
2) Random Assignment - away of elimin­ating biases or uneven levels of third variables in the experi­mental and control groups
Double Blind
neither observer nor partic­ipate knows the true nature of the study
Demand Charac­ter­istics
can keep people from behaving naturally in an observ­ational setting
Before we measure something ...
we must define it.
To the degree that an instrument can detect minute variation in magnitude that instrument has

Visual Cortex

Subdiv­isions of the Brain

* Supports high-order cognition & emotion
2 Main Divisions:
1) Cerebral Cortex - outer area of the brain
2) Subcor­tical Structures - housed under the cortex at the center of the brain
* Coordi­nates info enteri­ng&ex­iting the spinal cord
* Controls basic functions of life: respir­ation, alertness, motor skills
* Composed of sections: the medulla, reticular formation, cerebe­llum, and the pons
* Relatively small in humans
* Consisting of 2 mains parts - Tectum & Tegmentum: both orient you to stimuli in enviro­nment


Master Hormone Gland
Deals with Emotion & Emotional Memories
Motor Cortex
Front Lobe
Somato­sensory Cortex
Parietal Lobe
Corpus Callosum
Thick band nerve fibers connects large areas of cerebral cortex
Regulate body temp., hunger, thirst, and sexual behavior
Help create new memories and sends them to other parts of the cortex
Takes in info. from all the major senses - except smell

Brain Imaging Equipment

1) Comput­erized Axial Tomography (CT)
1) Position Emission Tomography (PET)
2) Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
2) functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI)
3) Trans-­cranial Magnetic Stimul­ation (TMS)

Mind Theories (Psyc)

the private inner experience of percep­tions, thoughts, memories, feelings
Cultural Psyc
the study of how cultures reflec­t&­shape the psyc processes of their members
Social Psyc
the study of the causes­&c­ons­equ­ences of sociality
Evolut­ionary Psyc
a psyc approach that explains minds&beh. in terms of adaptive value of abilities that are preserved over time by natural selection
Cognitive Psyc
computer & human mind ---> register, store, retrieve info. ---> parall­el/­similar
the study of biological processes
observable actions of human beings & animals
Clinical Psyc
came out of medicine
- Most PhDs in Psyc
objects perceived existences dependent upon the activity of a mind
matter as the objects of perception is basic & exists indepe­ndent of the perceiver
physical ailments w/out apparent cause


Humanistic Psyc-gist
1) Abraham Maslow
2) Carl Roger
Marie Flourens
removed areas from the brains of various animals & realized that their beh. differed from those of unaltered animals
Rene Decrates
12th century Frenchman
Dualism - mind/brain fundam­entally diff. substances
Donald BroadBent
1st to study attention
Kurt Lewin
early 20th century
recognized the stimulus response model wasn't enough
personal view/e­xpe­rience the response of a stimulus
Karl Lashley
20th century
recorded how rats learned to run mazes and then removed parts of their brain and tested them against to see of they could still run the maze
subjective observ­ation of one's own experience
analysis of basic elements that constitute the mind
William James
human beh. can teach us about the human mind
Consci­ousness - subjective experience of world&mind
Greek Thinkings
Phil. Position
Plato: Nativism - innate traits
Aristotle: Empiricism - knowledge through experience
Thomas Hobbs
17th Century Brit
mind is what brain does
G. Stanley Hall
studied educat­ion­&human develo­pment
physicist & physio­logist
measured stimulus & response time
studied speed of nerves in frogs
Gestalt Psyc
emphasizes how the mind takes pieces of an experi­enc­es&in­teg­rates them into a single, or unified form
John Watson
1st to really work out the LIMITS OF BEHAVIOR
Animal behavi­orist
Humans don't have mind
BF Skinner
writer ---> psycho­logist
Skinner Boxes -> Rats -> Food (Reinf­orc­ements) -> results (training)
nonsense syllabus -> storage device -> no connection to life experience
Sigmund Freud
medical Dr. associated w/
Psycho­ana­lysis - a process to uncover uncons­cious problems that might drive conscious beh.
Noam Chomsky
behavi­orist model could NOT account for language in children
shows the blinding effect of human stubbo­rnness
Ivan Pavlov
19th Century Physio­logist
noticed in his study of canine digestion, that dogs salivated not only when they saw their food, but eventually at the sight of their master who would feed them.
Paul Broca
19th century French Surgeon
Locali­zation of Function - specific functions linked to specific brain areas
Franz Gall
18th & 19th century
Phrenology - defunct theory: memory - happiness, localized areas of the brain


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