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Short_Psychology/TOK: Sensation and Perception

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Jennifer Ozark

on 1 December 2017

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Transcript of Short_Psychology/TOK: Sensation and Perception

the acquiring of information from the environment through the senses
Vision: a single candle from 30 miles away on a clear dark night.
Smell: a drop of perfume diffused in a 3-room apartment
Taste: a single teaspoon of sugar in 2 gallons of water
Hearing: a watch’s tick from 20 feet away in a quiet room.
Touch: a bee’s wing falling on your cheek from 1 cm away.
There is a minimum amount of each stimulus that humans can recognize as a sensation.

(The standard is that the stimulus should be recognized 50% of the time)
Sensory Adaptation
the smallest amount of change in stimulus needed to be noticed as a change
The larger a stimulus is, the more change is needed to be noticed.
If we are constantly exposed to a stimulus, eventually we will fail to notice it
Subliminal Messages
When our senses pick up and process stimuli, but without our conscious awareness.
Even though these stimuli are outside our awareness, they can still effect our behavhior
the focusing of conscious awareness on only one particular stimulus
failure to notice seemingly obvious changes in the environment
Selective attention
Change blindness
turning environmental information into neural impulses
Sight: transduction occurs within the eye – where neural impulses are created from
light waves
Hearing: transduction occurs within the ear – neural impulses are created from
sound waves
Smell: occurs within the nose – created from a chemical reaction (
gas molecules
Touch: occurs within the skin – created from
physical contact
Taste: occurs on the tongue – created from a chemical reaction with
what we ingest
(includes pressure, pain, and temperature)
Kinesthetic Sense
(also known as proprioception)
Vestibular Sense
orientation of the body in the world
orientation of the body to itself and all of it's parts
Is the information we get from our senses reliable?

Do we perceive the world as it truly is?
the process through which we interpret and consciously experience information from the senses
It is estimated that we receive 11,000,000 pieces of information per second

Of that information, we can only consciously attend to 40 pieces at a time
Amount we are consciously aware of
Absolute Threshold
Difference Threshold
Weber's Law
For example...
Let's say my classroom is empty
Then these two girls come in and start talking and doing homework
I'm clearly going to notice the increase in noise, right?
Scenario 1
Scenario 2
My classroom is very full and VERY loud
The same two girls from before enter and starting talking/doing homework
Think I'll notice the change in noise this time?
You can feel them now, but were you really conscious of that feeling before?
Pay attention to how your clothes feel on your body right now.
Wanna know a secret?
It turns out that subliminal messages...don't really work
The sense of touch as we normally think of it is a result of several different kinds of sense receptors, all located within the skin
(and a few other places)
The tongue is covered with many little bumps called Fungiform Papillae, on which are your taste buds. Your taste buds can detect 5 different flavors: sweet, salty, sour, bitter and umami (savory)
Proprioception Test
Activity 1: Find your fingertips

Close your eyes and raise both hands above your head. Keep the fingers of your left hand totally still (no wiggling!). With your right hand, quickly touch your index fingertip to your nose, then quickly touch the tip of your thumb of your left hand with the tip of your right index finger. Quickly repeat the entire process while attempting to touch each fingertip (always return to your nose in between fingertip attempts).

Switch hands and try again. How successfully did you locate each fingertip? Did you improve with time? Was there a difference when you used your right versus your left hand?

Try again, but this time, wiggle the fingers of your raised hand while you're doing this.

Activity 2: Handwriting analysis

On a lined sheet of paper, write the word "proprioception". Place your pencil on the same line next to the written word, close your eyes, and write "proprioception" again. Is there a difference in the appearance of the two written words?

Tree pose in Yoga
• Differentiate between sensation and perception

• Differentiate between kinesthetic and vestibular sense

• Understand relationship between our perceptions and how they can affect our senses

Field sobriety tests are testing your proprioception, which becomes impacted under the influence of alcohol.
One leg stand
Cowboy - success
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