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What was the key part of cognitive psychology in the 1880's?

Wilhelm Wundt and structuralism


What did Wundt/structuralism look at?

Replication issues and complex cognition. Introspection was used


What is needed for introspection?

Observer must know when experience begins and ends, and must maintain 'strained attention'. Phenomenon must bear repetition/be capable of variation (experimentation)


What did introspection discover?

It determined the seven 'qualities' of sensation


What approach is James associated with?



How did functionalism develop?

Developed out of pragmatism as a philosophy


What does James/functionalism talk about?

To find meaning of an idea, look at its consequences. This led to emphasis on cause-and-effect, prediction and control, observation of environment and behaviour


What was the key part of cognitive psychology in the 1900s-1950s?

Watson, Skinner and behaviourism. Koffka, Kohler and Gestalt approach. Freud, Adler, Jung and psychodynamic approach


What does behaviourism look at?

Focus on observable causes of behaviour, stimulus-response links and applying to psychology. It comes from a reaction to the limits of introspection


What is the Gestalt approach?

It is a reaction to structuralism (human as a 'whole'). Cannot break into smaller parts. Want to discover meaning and structure


What is the psychodynamic approach?

A reaction to the behaviourist approach. Focuses on unconscious motivations for behaviour


What was the key part of cognitive psychology in the 1950s-present?

Cognitive psychology and information processing. There is a scientific interest in unobservable mental processes. Behaviourism is inadequate and so a new paradigm was developed


What are different branches of the mind-body problem?

Type identity theory, functionalism, token identity theory


What is type identity theory (mind-body problem)?

Mental state is equivalent to specific pattern of neural events


What is functionalism (mind-body problem)?

Draws distinction between structure of mental state (neural activity) and function of mental state (consequences). Cognitive psychology about developing functional explanation of mental processes


What is token identity theory (mind-body problem)?

Mental state maps onto variety of different neural events, but if true, can knowledge of neural events ever help understand mental events?


What is the information processing analogy?

Input, processing, output. Similar to: sensory info, internal representations


What are assumptions of the computational metaphor?

The mind contains symbolic representations (stored in memory), and that cognition is the product of 'operations'


What are the 'operations' that produce cognition?

Internal processes that act on symbolic representations. Operations deployed according to rules that are also stored in memory


What are the three levels of description (Marr)?

Computational theory level (what cognition is), representation and algorithm level (how cognition works), hardware level (how representations play out in real world)


What is modularity 1?

Marr-cognition composed of modules, which each have specific function/processes. Cognitive activity comprised of activation of several, independent modules. Damage to one module doesn't necessarily affect other modules eg prosopagnosia. Modules correspond to anatomically defined areas and are similar across all humans


What is modularity 2?

Fodor-distinction between input systems (process incoming sensory info, transfer it to central processors, are domain specific), and central processors (make decisions, plan action, not modular)


What are methods for identifying modules?

Dissociations (manipulation that affects one cognitive task but not a different task), and double dissociations (show the opposite)


What is cognitive neuropsychology?

Reverse engineering cognition. Localisation of function less important. Typically investigate single cases, eg HM (Scoville and Milner), and neuropsychology to cure epilepsy


What is the model of object recognition (Ellis and Young)?

Object, initial representation-DF, viewer centred representation-simultanagnosia, object centred representation (NA)-object recognition units-semantic system (AB)


What are the limitations of cognitive psychology?

What is 'normal' performance for that patient (pre-injury)?, functional reorganisation of cognition (compensatory strategies), can say anything about time-course of information processing, damage is rarely focal


What is the problem with attention?

Humans have very limited cognitive resources and overwhelming amount of sensory information


What is attention?

Input and central processes. There are filters to limit sensory info to higher cognitive processes. Not a single construct, more like an 'attentional system'


What is the modular model of attention (Posner and Peterson/Corbetta and Shulman)

Three components: alerting (central process), selection/orienting (input module), and executive (central process)


What is selection?

Modular with distinct anatomical correlates in parietal lobe and premotor cortex