Psychology - Assumptions of the Biological Approach

bethforshaw's version from 2016-12-24 13:03

Section 1

Question Answer
What is the first assumption?Evolutionary Influences
Why is the theory of evolution used in psychology?It shows we have adapted to the demands of our individual environment
What is Darwins theory?Natural selection
What is natural selection?the idea that any genetically determined behaviour that enhances an individuals chance of survival and reproduction will be naturally selected i.e. the genes will be passed on to the next generation.
What is an example of natural selection taking place at a level of genes?Altruistic behaviour (parents risking their lives to save their offspring)
Why does altruistic behaviour enhance the survival of the individuals gene pool?You are saving your offspring so keeping that gene pool protected and able to be passed on
What does EEA stand for?Environment of Evolutionary Adaptiveness
What is EEA?Refers to the environment in which a given adaption is said to have evolved
For humans, what is the most recent period of evolutionary change?When humans moved from the forest life to the developing savannahs in Africa.
What can EEA explain?Why humans have such large brains relative to their body size

Section 2

Question Answer
What is the second assumption?Localisation of Brain Function
What does localisation of brain function refer to?The principle that certain areas of the brain are responsible for different functions
What is the cerebral cortex responsible for?Higher order of cognative functions
Name all 4 regions of the cerebral cortex?The frontal lobe, the parietal lobe, the temporal lobe and the occipital lobe
What does the frontal lobe do?Thinking and creativity - linked to our personality
What does the parietal lobe do?Recieves sensory information such as temperature, touch and pain
What does the temporal lobe do?Responsible for much of our memory processing as well as the processing of auditory information (hence speech)
What does the occipital lobe do?Concerned with visual processing and receiving information directly from the eyes
What did French neurosurgeon Paul Broca look into?Studied 8 patients with language problems. He examined their brains after death and found they had a damage to their left hemisphere.
What is the left hemisphere also named and why?Broca's area because of his study
What is the left hemisphere associated with?Speech production.
Where is Broca's area located? (specifically)The posterior portion of the frontal lobe
Who discovered an area of the brain involved with understanding language?Carl Wernicke
Where is Wernickes area located? (specifically)The posterior of the left temporal lobe.

Section 3

Question Answer
What is the third assumption?Neurotransmitters
What are neurons?Electrically excitable cells that form the basis of the nervous system
What are dendrites?Branches at the end of each neuron
How do neurons communicate?Through synapses
How is the message in a synapse relayed?By chemical messengers (neurotransmitters)
What released neurotransmitters?Presynaptic vesicles
What is the synaptic cleft?The gap
How big generally is the synaptic cleft?20 nanometres
What have neurotransmitters been found to play a significant role in?Mental health issues
Example of a neurotransmitter involved with mental healthSeretonin. Too little seretonin has been found in people suffering from depression
What neurotransmitter has been associated with schizophrenia?Dopamine

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