Cognitive Level of Analysis for Psychology

Stan Lee Tan
Flashcards by Stan Lee Tan, updated more than 1 year ago
Stan Lee Tan
Created by Stan Lee Tan over 7 years ago


Exam May 2014

Resource summary

Question Answer
Outline the 3 principles that define the cognitive level of analysis 1) Humans are information processes 2) Mental processes can be scientifically studied through lab experiments 3) Culture and social factors influence cognitive processes
What are the key points for the principle: 'Humans are Information Processors' 1) Cognition refers to all mental tasks 2) People acquire input, process it and store to use when appropriate 3) Atkinson & Schriffin 4) Schema Theory
What are the main points for the cognitive principle: 'Mental processes can be scientifically studied through lab experiments' 1) Mental processes are hard to observe as they occur rapidly and there's no direct observation 2) Stroop Effect, a classic example of a lab experiment (IV affecting DV)
What are the key points for the cognitive principle: 'Social and Cultural factors influence cognitive processes' 1) Cognitive processes are universal 2) Processing is different (cognitive skills) 3) War of the Ghost by Bartlett 4) Cole & Scribner
Discuss why particular research methods are used at the cognitive level of analysis 1) Lab Experiment: strength: clearest way of showing IV affecting DV e.g. Craik & Tulving weakness: ecological validity 2) Case Studies (of brain damage patients) e.g. Case of Tan (leading to finding of Broca's are) and Case of H.M. (leading to finding the role of hippocampus forming LTM) strength: take advantage of naturally occurring events (unethical to impose on people) weakness: unique circumstances may compromise generalizability (H.M. had epileptic seizures) and damage is widespread (H.M. = hippocampus + medial temporal lobe) 3) Brain Imaging Techniques: e.g. Goshe et al had 100% accuracy in determining difference between Alzheimer patients and patients with none or few symptoms strength: indirect study of brain areas through CAT,PET, or MRI scans weakness: correlation not causation, brain areas activate for various reasons
Discuss ethical considerations related to research studies at the cognitive level of analysis 1) Consent - may produce demand characteristics e.g. Milgram 2) Deception - necessary in some situations e.g. Milgram 3)Debriefing - ensure participants are not affected/traumatized e.g. Milgram 4) Protection of participants - researcher's obligation to take care of participants e.g. Milgram/Zimbardo 5)Right to withdraw - participants feel obliged to continue e.g. Milgram 6)Confidentiality - unique circumstances give them away e.g. H.M.
Evaluate schema theory with reference to research studies 1) Schemas are mental representations of the world 2) Reconstructed memories may have distortions 3) War of the Ghosts - Bartlett; not controlled well 4) Repeat of the study with realistic events - Wynn & Logie 5) Anderson & Pichert 6) Rumelhart - no definition for a schema 7) Cohen - schema theory does not explain how they work 8) Schemas help us simplify reality but may distort memories
Evaluate two models of memory 1) Atkinson & Schriffin - Models of Memory 2) Many support the distinction of LTM & STM - e.g. Glanzer & Kunitz's 'primary-recency' 3) Model is oversimplified, one way and passive 4) Levels of Processing by Craik & Lockhart 5) Hyde & Jenkins found 51% more recall with semantic processing 6) Supports understanding for studying rather than reading and re-reading 7) Eynsenck says LoP describes but does not explain 8) Anderson & Bower emphasize on elaboration 9)'depth' and 'elaboration' are ill defined 10) circular reasoning - deeply processed memory remembered better but measure of depth is how well inf. is recalled
Explain how biological factors may influence one cognitive process 1) Role of Hippocampus - Kandel identifying memories within the neuron circuitry 2)Case studies of brain damaged patients e.g. H.M, Clive Wearing However, uniqueness compromise generalizability and ethical issues 3) Animal Studies e.g. Zola-Morgan However, ethical issues and generalizability questions
To what extent is one cognitive process reliable? 1) Heavy reliance on memory 2) Reconstructive nature of memory 3) War of the Ghosts - Bartlett 4) Loftus & Palmer - Leading questions 5) Loftun & Christianson - Car crash 6) Yuille criticizes lack of ecological validity and emotional trauma 7) Freudian theory of repression 8) Williams - on sexual abuse victims, 38% repressed weakness: unsure whether hospital records report on conviction or suspicion 9) Eileen Franklin 10) Loftus & Pickerell - implanted memories, 25% believed in the false memories 11) False memory based accusations Summary: memories are reconstructed by schema, interfered with later information and susceptible to false information (could mention Neisser on Challenger Explosion)
Discuss how social or cultural factors affect one cognitive process 1) Cognitive process is universal, not cognitive task 2) Cole & Scriber - comparison between American children, Kpelle children and non-schoold Kpelle children 3) Cole - tested against cognitive task like clustering using narrative method 4) Rogoff - Mayan children with 3D Diorama
Discuss the use of technology in investigating one cognitive process 1) Alzheimer as loss of neurons to areas crucial to cognitive processing 2) Tools to help diagnoses: Medical test, Medical history, Neuropsychological tests, Brain scans 3) Only definitive diagnosis after death 4) PET - tracer watching sugar consumption and use (less activity in damaged areas) 5) Longitudinal study found reduction brain metabolism in hippocampus before onset of Alzheimer for 50 people 6) MRI - a set image, can be used to observe physical shrinking of hippocampus 7) Goshe - MRI patients for 119 participants, 100% accuracy between ALZ and no/few symptoms and 93% between mild cognitive impairment and no problem
To what extent do cognitive and biological factors interact in emotion 1) Shacter & Singer - Two factor theory 2) Lazarus - Appraisal theory 3) Speisman - video of genital mutilation with varying commentary 4) Le Doux - (used rats) dual pathways allowing for flexible reactions and no condition to fear if short-path was cut. 5) Feinsten - studied S.M., a woman who had a rare disease that destroyed amygdala resulting in inability to fear
Evaluate one theory of how emotion may affect one cognitive process 1) Heavy reliance on memory 2) Brown & Kulik - Flashbulb memory triggered by biological mechanism to release hormones 3) Sharot - had participants in fMRI while recalling a 9/11 and found higher readings in stress hormones 4) Neisser, memories are clearer and longer lasting due to frequent rehearsal 5) Neisser - Challenger Explosion, 40% distorted memories after 2 years from initial 24 hours reading 5) Christianson & Loftus - emotional arousal had enhanced central event but hampered periphery vision.
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