Essentials of Psychology

Study Guide

Essentials of Psychology By

Robert G. Turner Jr., Ph.D.

About the Author

Robert G. Turner Jr., Ph.D., has more than 20 years of teaching and education-related experience. He has taught seventh-grade sci- ence, worked as a curriculum developer for the Upward Bound Program, and taught sociology, social psychology, anthropology, and honors seminars at the university level. As a professional writer, he has written nonfiction books, journal and magazine arti- cles, novels, and stage plays.

Copyright © 2013 by Penn Foster, Inc.

All rights reserved. No part of the material protected by this copyright may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Requests for permission to make copies of any part of the work should be mailed to Copyright Permissions, Penn Foster, 925 Oak Street, Scranton, Pennsylvania 18515.

Printed in the United States of America

04/13/16

All terms mentioned in this text that are known to be trademarks or service marks have been appropriately capitalized. Use of a term in this text should not be regarded as affecting the validity of any trademark or service mark.

INSTRUCTIONS TO STUDENTS 1

LESSON ASSIGNMENTS 7

LESSON 1: PSYCHOLOGY: THE SCIENCE OF THE MIND 9

LESSON 2: THE MIND AT WORK 43

LESSON 3: MOTIVATION, EMOTION, DEVELOPMENT, AND PERSONALITY 75

ESSAY ASSIGNMENT 117

LESSON 4: PSYCHOLOGICAL DISORDERS 121

LESSON 5: PSYCHOLOGY FOR TWO OR MORE 143

CASE STUDIES ASSIGNMENT 165

SELF-CHECK ANSWERS 167

APPENDIX 173

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YOUR COURSE Welcome to Essentials of Psychology! You’re entering a course of study designed to help you better understand yourself and others. For that reason, you can think of this course as practical. It should be of use to you in living your life and reaching the goals you set for yourself.

You’ll use two main resources for your course work: this study guide and your textbook, Psychology and Your Life, 2nd Edition, by Robert S. Feldman.

OBJECTIVES When you complete this course, you’ll be able to

n Describe the science and methodologies of psychology in the context of its historical origins and major perspectives

n Outline the fundamental structure of the human nervous system and explain how it relates to the organization of human sensory perception

n Relate altered states of consciousness to sleep, hypnosis, meditation, sensory deprivation, and physiological responses to psychoactive drugs

n Discuss the basic concepts of behavioral psychology, including classical conditioning, operant conditioning, and cognitive learning theory

n Describe the nature of human memory in relationship to thinking processes, intelligence, creativity, and intuition

n Explain the basic concepts of human motivation in relationship to emotions

n Discuss concepts and models of personality, including psychodynamic, trait, learning, evolutionary, and humanistic approaches

n Explain concepts of intelligence and describe approaches to assessing and measuring intelligence

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Instructions to Students2

n Differentiate a healthy personality from a disordered personality in the context of mental health and stress management

n Discuss basic influences of social life and how people respond to them

COURSE MATERIALS Your Essentials of Psychology course provides you with the materials listed below:

1. This study guide, which includes

n A lesson assignments page that lists the schedule of assigned readings in your textbook

n Self-checks and answers that allow you to measure your understanding of the course material

n Introductions to the lessons and assignments

2. Your course textbook, Psychology and Your Life, 2nd Edition, by Robert S. Feldman, which contains your assigned readings

YOUR TEXTBOOK Success in your course depends on your knowledge of the text. For that reason, you should take some time to look through it from front to back. Give yourself a sense of how the material is arranged. Here are some of the key features of your text:

n “About the Author” is found with the front matter of your text.

n A brief table of contents is found with the front matter of your text.

n An extended table of contents is found with the front matter of your text.

n A preface gives you an overview of chapter features.

Instructions to Students 3

n “To the Students” is a vital feature of your text. We strongly recommend that you become familiar with the author’s SQ3R method and take full advantage of tips for effective study and test-taking strategies.

n A modular format divides each chapter into related topic groups.

n “Learning Outcomes” are listed at the beginning of each module.

n “Study Alerts” are highlighted in text margins. They’ll help you stay focused on key ideas and concepts.

n “From the Perspective of…” shows you how psychology impacts different professions.

n “Becoming an Informed Consumer of Psychology” helps you think about practical applications of psychology in your everyday life.

n “Exploring Diversity” offers you opportunities for critical analysis of psychological issues across cultures and eth- nic groups.

n “Full Circle” end-of-chapter features give you a concept map for modules included in a chapter.

n A “Key Terms” summary helps you remember what you need to remember.

n “Looking Ahead/Looking Back” introduces key concepts of the next chapter and summarizes the chapter you’ve just completed to reinforce your learning.

n “Recap/Evaluate/Rethink” end-of-module activities are directly related to the module’s learning outcomes.

n “Case Studies” at the end of each chapter offer excellent opportunities to apply and analyze chapter content.

n Your text’s illustrations are captioned as figures. The information contained in these graphics should be seen as parts of your assigned text material. Assume their content will reappear in self-checks and lesson exams.

A STUDY PLAN This study guide is intended to help you achieve the maximum benefit from the time you spend on this course. It isn’t meant to replace your textbook. Instead, it serves as an introduction to material you’ll read in the text and as an aid to assist you in understanding this material.

This study guide provides your assignments in five lessons. Each lesson contains two to three chapter assignments, with Evaluate quizzes and a self-check for each assignment. A multiple-choice examination follows each lesson. Be sure to complete all work related to a lesson before moving on to the next lesson.

For each lesson, do the following:

1. Read the instructions to each assignment in this study guide. The instructions will provide you with the pages in the textbook that must be read.

2. Now read the assigned pages in this study guide.

3. Then read the assigned pages in the textbook.

4. When you’ve finished the assignment, complete the self- check, Evaluate quizzes, and discussion board posting. Note: The Evaluate quizzes and self-checks aren’t graded and are for your use only—don’t send your answers to the school.

â Self-Checks: The self-checks are designed to indi- cate how well you understand the material, so test yourself honestly. Make every effort to complete the questions before turning to the answers at the back of the study guide. If you find any weak areas, return to the text and review the relevant material until you understand it.

â Evaluate Quizzes: With the exception of Assignment 12, each assignment lists Evaluate quizzes for you to complete. Once you’ve taken the Evaluate quizzes, you’ll find the answers upside-down on the same page as the quiz. As with the self-checks, make every effort to complete the questions before turning

Instructions to Students4

to the answers. If you find any weak areas, return to the text and review the relevant material until you understand it.

â Discussion Board Posting: Each lesson has a required discussion board that’s located on your stu- dent portal. In order to receive credit for the discussion board, you must make an initial response to the question and respond to at least two other students.

5. Follow this procedure for all assignments until you’ve completed the lesson.

6. Once you’re confident that you understand all the material for the lesson, complete the multiple-choice lesson exam- ination. The examination is open-book and is based on both textbook and study guide material.

7. Repeat steps 1–6 for the remaining lessons in this study guide.

If you have any questions, email your instructor.

Now review the lesson assignments on the following pages of this study guide. Then begin your study of psychology with Lesson 1, Assignment 1.

Good luck, and enjoy your studies!

Instructions to Students 5

NOTES

Instructions to Students6

Lesson 1: Psychology: The Science of the Mind For: Read in the Read in

study guide: the textbook:

Assignment 1 Pages 9–20 Chapter 1

Assignment 2 Pages 22–30 Chapter 2

Assignment 3 Pages 32–40 Chapter 3

Examination 250053 Material in Lesson 1 Discussion Board 250054

Lesson 2: The Mind at Work For: Read in the Read in

study guide: the textbook:

Assignment 4 Pages 43–51 Chapter 4

Assignment 5 Pages 52–60 Chapter 5

Assignment 6 Pages 61–73 Chapter 6

Examination 250055 Material in Lesson 2 Discussion Board 250056

Lesson 3: Motivation, Emotion, Development, and Personality For: Read in the Read in

study guide: the textbook:

Assignment 7 Pages 75–84 Chapter 7

Assignment 8 Pages 85–97 Chapter 8

Assignment 9 Pages 99–114 Chapter 9

Examination 250057 Material in Lesson 3 Discussion Board 250058

Essay 250059

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Lesson 4: Psychological Disorders For: Read in the Read in

study guide: the textbook:

Assignment 10 Pages 121–131 Chapter 10

Assignment 11 Pages 133–141 Chapter 11

Examination 250060 Material in Lesson 4 Discussion Board 250061

Lesson 5: Psychology for Two or More For: Read in the Read in

study guide: the textbook:

Assignment 12 Pages 143–149 Pages 484–501

Assignment 13 Pages 151–162 Pages 502–533

Examination 250062 Material in Lesson 5 Discussion Board 250063 Case Studies 250064

Lesson Assignments8

Note: To access and complete any of the examinations for this study

guide, click on the appropriate Take Exam icon on your student portal.

You shouldn’t have to enter the examination numbers. These numbers

are for reference only if you have reason to contact Student Services.

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Psychology: The Science of the Mind

INTRODUCTION You’ll begin this lesson with an overview of psychology as a science. You’ll learn its goals and major perspectives. Next, you’ll get a critical discussion of the nature of science. This part of your assignment is essential for two reasons. First, getting the most out of this course requires you to take the scientific point of view. Second, you should get into the habit of critical thinking, always remembering that science isn’t about believing; it’s about investigating. The second assign- ment will introduce you to the relationship between the nervous system, the brain, and behavior. You’ll discover how hormones produced by the body’s endocrine system regulate body processes, including aspects of behavior. The final assignment introduces you to the fascinating perplexities of sensation and perception. You’ll discover how our senses, like vision, hearing, and touch, enter into psychological experi- ence. In this context, you’ll also get some insight into how sensory stimuli are organized precisely through the ways we perceive the world around us.

ASSIGNMENT 1—INTRODUCTION TO PSYCHOLOGY Read this assignment. Then read Chapter 1 in your textbook.

Psychologists at Work

What Is Psychology?

Psychologists try to describe, explain, and predict human behavior and mental processes. In this way, psychologists aim to help people live healthier, happier lives.

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What Are the Subfields of Psychology?

Because behavior and mental processes can be viewed in different ways, there are subfields of psychology. Neuroscientists attempt to understand the biological roots of behavior. Developmental psychology studies the ways in which psychological processes change throughout the human life cycle. Clinical psychologists attempt to diagnose and treat psychological problems, like depression.

By far, clinical psychologists make up the largest number of psychological specialists. Further, most are engaged in private practice, and more than half of all psychologists work in mental health services—typically helping people with their mental and emotional problems.

A Science Evolves

What Are the Roots of Psychology?

The first part of this section tells you about the main traditional schools of psychology. The term school here refers to a per- spective or point of view. The traditional schools of psychology developed as the science of psychology developed. You’ll be challenged to think about how the schools of psychology developed over time.

Structuralism developed in the late nineteenth century as one of the earliest views of human behavior. In 1879, a German researcher named Wilhelm Wundt became interested in how people respond to a stimulus. A stimulus is anything that causes a response or a reaction of some kind. (Stimuli is the plural of stimulus.) Heat, light, a pinprick, and loud noises are examples of stimuli. Wundt conducted his studies by introspection. Introspection involves paying attention to your own consciousness, thoughts, and feelings. Wundt thought that observing the effects of stimuli and then using self-observa- tion through introspection would help us understand human behavior. Basically, structuralists wanted to sort out the differ- ent parts that make up the human mind. However, because they depended so much on introspection, structuralists couldn’t agree on many things.

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Functionalism was developed mainly by William James. James broadened the concerns of psychology to include the nature of consciousness and the purposes of religion in human life, as well as the ways people respond to stimuli. Because his work was so broad and full of insight, it remains of interest today. The term functionalism refers to the attempt to understand how the human mind helps people adapt to their environments.

Gestalt psychology developed mainly in Europe (while behav- iorism was being developed in the United States). Its main contribution to psychology was to help us understand that we respond to the context of things we experience. Gestalt theorists liked to say, “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.” For example, when you listen to a song that you like, you don’t enjoy each individual note independently of the others. Instead, you enjoy the overall melody that’s cre- ated when all of the notes are combined in a particular way.

There were founding mothers in the science of psychology. A few of them, like Karen Horney (pronounced “HORN-eye”), extended the perspectives of the school with which they were associated. In the case of Dr. Horney, that meant extending the psychoanalytic theory of Sigmund Freud to pay more attention to social and cultural factors.

Today’s Perspectives

The neuroscience perspective focuses on the ways in which biological processes, in humans and animals, underlie behaviors and behavioral responses of all kinds. The perspective includes studies of evolutionary biology—how behaviors have evolved as species have evolved—and the role of genetics in behavioral processes.

The psychodynamic perspective holds that our behavior is largely shaped by the nature of our personality and by unconscious forces in the psyche. In the psychoanalytic view, the mind is a layered thing, and the depths of it remain largely mysterious and unknown to us. The term psyche usually refers to the entire mystery of mind, consciousness, experience, and memory. The word itself comes from the Greek word for soul. The psychodynamic view comes

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primarily from the psychoanalytic theory developed by Sigmund Freud. Today, while many aspects of Freudian theory have lost favor, the psychodynamic perspective continues to help us understand things like prejudice and aggression. We’ll cover this perspective in some detail in Chapter 11.

The behavioral perspective became a dominant point of view in psychology as issues like the nature of consciousness lost popularity. Many decided to concentrate on observable and measurable (overt) behaviors and ignore the study of con- sciousness itself. Behaviorism is the study of how organisms, including human beings, learn behaviors by responding to stimuli. The behaviorist view emphasizes the idea that our behavior is shaped by our environment. That is, human behavior—and that of all organisms—is shaped by adaptive responses that best manage environmental stimuli.

The cognitive perspective views behavior and human nature as related mainly to our cognitive processes. Cognitive processes include both our thoughts and our emotions, but researchers tend to focus mainly on thoughts. In this context, thought processes are compared to the ways in which computers work. Overall, this view seeks to understand how we perceive and interpret stimuli, solve problems, and make judgments.

The humanistic perspective objects to the determinism of other views of human behavior, particularly as represented by behaviorism. Determinism is the idea that human behavior is determined mainly by mechanical or biological forces over which people have little personal control. By way of contrast, a central tenet of the humanistic perspective is that humans have free will and can be enabled to be “the best that they can be.” In other words, we adapt to the world through inner motivations and through selected responses to sensory stimuli in our environment.

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Key Controversies in Psychology There are five major controversies in psychology. You may recognize that the opposed views represent deep philosophi- cal questions about human nature and our species’ place in the cosmic scheme—whatever that may be.

1. Is human development mainly a result of environmental factors or of genetic inheritance? This is the so-called nature-nurture debate. As it turns out, most researchers tend to suspect that both play a hand.

2. To what extent is behavior motivated by conscious as opposed to unconscious mental processes? The issue here can be thought of as one of free will. If we do things for unconscious reasons, we do what we do without knowing why we do it; hence, our behavior is determined.

3. What should be the focus of research in psychology? Should we focus on observable behaviors or on internal mental processes? In fact, clinical researchers in particu- lar tend to feel that both frames of reference need to be taken into account.

4. How much of our behavior results from free will as opposed to conditioned behavior? Once again, some would argue that behavior is a mixture of free choice and “automated,” or reflexive, responses.

5. To what extent is our behavior a result of individual dif- ferences as opposed to social and cultural influences? And, in that context, are there universal psychological principles that apply across cultures?

Research in Psychology

The Scientific Method

Although your textbook focuses on psychology, as you would expect, the methods of scientific research are identical from physics to biology to sociology. This section introduces you to the ways psychologists use the methods and principles of scientific research.

Essentials of Psychology14

There are four basic steps in scientific research:

1. Identify questions of interest. You pay attention to the world around you and ask questions about it. Scientific observation depends on empirical evidence—evidence that can be observed and measured. So, the first step in the scientific method is observation that’s both active and selective. In other words, we don’t try to observe and study everything, everywhere. We try to observe things that can provide empirical evidence. However, we do that selectively because we focus on phenomena that catch our attention and spark our interest.

2. Formulate an explanation. To define a problem, we must recognize that relationships can exist among different variables (things that can be measured) that produce measurable outcomes. For example, you may observe that children who are read to by their parents are better students than those who aren’t read to by their parents. Although you might assume that the parents are making a positive impact on their children’s academic abilities by reading to them, you’ll need to conduct research to verify your observations. That is, you can pose a hypothesis. A hypothesis is a scientific question that states a problem in a way that can be measured and tested. Put another way, every hypothesis is a statement that shows how we mean to study a problem in order to answer a question. Theory building results from testing many hypotheses to come to overall conclusions that best explain our find- ings. After conducting a lot of research, we might develop a theory. Or we might test a theory through research to see if it makes sense.

3. Carry out research. For example, a hypothesis relating school performance to being read to by parents might look like this:

Children who are read to by their parents are more likely to score above average on standard first-grade achievement tests than children who aren’t read to by their parents.

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What we must do now is use a research technique to support or disprove our hypothesis. We might use a correlational study. Or, better yet, if feasible, we can perform an experiment.

4. Communicate findings. Having gathered our evidence, for- mulated a hypothesis, and tested it through research, we can write a research report. If we can get it published in a scientific journal, other researchers can check our work and advance their own. Often, other researchers may do this through replication, doing the same research to see if it yields similar results.

Descriptive Research

All of the following are forms of descriptive research.

Archival research looks at existing data. It might be found in census data, court records, or the findings’ previous studies. That is, you examine what are normally called secondary sources. Archival research nearly always precedes any kind of primary (original) research, since one is well advised to discover what’s already known.

Naturalistic observation (observing behavior in natural environments) is a good way to gather descriptive informa- tion. If you want to see how children actually behave on a playground, you could spend some time eating your lunch each day at a playground. On the other hand, it’s possible that children being watched by an adult will behave differ- ently than they would with no adult around. This change in behavior is called the observer effect. To avoid it, you might set up hidden remote cameras around the playground. However, since many feel that the cameras would violate the children’s right to privacy, you may not get funding for that kind of research.

Another option would be to show up every day, sit in the same place, and never interfere with what the children are doing. This approach might overcome the observer effect since people tend to go back to their normal behaviors when they don’t perceive a threat from a silent observer. There’s no way to be sure of this. In any case, naturalistic observation is an important way to study the behavior of animals in the wild, as well as human beings at work and play.

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In survey research, we gather information from people using questionnaires or interview schedules. Surveys are often used to get a sense of people’s attitudes on different subjects. They’re often used to gauge a candidate’s support among voters. Among psychologists, surveys can be used to estimate the frequency with which people perform certain behaviors or experience intense emotion. As a rule, since it isn’t normally feasible to interview everyone in, say, the town of Mayberry, it’s necessary to draw a representative random sample. A random sample requires that everyone in a population to be studied has an equal chance of being selected. When a sam- ple is representative, we can generalize our finding to the larger study population.

A case study is a special kind of naturalistic study. It’s an intense, in-depth study of some individual or small group. A famous example involved a woman named Eve who seemed, in the opinion of her therapist, to have a large number of separate personalities. Even today, what’s called multiple personality disorder is a controversial subject. It’s controversial because the condition is very rare and because most of the evidence is derived from individual cases. That doesn’t mean that single case studies can’t provide valuable information. However, scientists do prefer other methods of study to support their hypotheses.

Correlational research examines the relationship between two or more variables. As noted, a variable is anything we can measure. Gender, age, education, IQ score, income, or even approval- disapproval of a social policy are examples of variables. For example, let’s say we want to understand the relationship of age to height among humans. We could gather height information from specific age groups to compare age and height. More than likely, we would discover that as age increases, so does height. In other words, as people get older (up to about age 20), they generally get taller.

If, in a correlational study, one variable increases as the other increases, we can say that age and height have a positive correlation. In some situations, however, the value of one variable increases as the value of a related variable decreases. For example, in an average population of people

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over 30, as individuals get older they tend to run a 400-meter race more slowly. In this case, age and running time repre- sent a negative correlation.

Correlational studies can be very useful. However, all they can do is show us that one variable is related to another to a greater or lesser extent. In studying different groups of people, for example, we may find that the correlation between age and creativity is either positive or negative. However, in neither case does our finding prove that people get more (or less) creative simply because they get older. In fact, we may find that the correlation is positive among artists and nega- tive among musicians. That wouldn’t tell us that there aren’t highly creative 50-year-old musicians. Nor would it confirm that there are few creative artists under the age of 50. A cor- relation shows only that a relationship exists among different variables. To prove that one variable causes another, we must turn to another method—the experiment.

Experimental Research

In science, the experiment is the king of research methods. Only through a carefully conducted experiment can we actually prove that one variable causes another. To under- stand the idea behind an experiment, let’s say we want to know if an experimental approach to studying sophomore- level history is better than the approach normally used at Jefferson High School (JHS). Here are the likely steps we’ll take to do our experiment:

1. Draw a representative sample of JHS sophomores. To make sure the sample is representative, we could get a list of all the sophomores. Let’s say there are 400 sopho- mores and we want a sample size of 40. We would use a randomizing technique that assures us that every student on the list has an equal chance of being selected, like drawing names out of a hat. (Each name we selected would then have to go back into the hat, so we could choose another name under the exact same conditions.)

2. Divide the sample of 40 into two groups of 20, using a randomizing technique like the one in step 1.

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3. Assign one group of 20 to a control group and the second group to an experimental group. The control group isn’t exposed to the independent variable, but the experimental group is.

4. Pick two classrooms that are identical. In one of these, stu- dents in the control group will receive a lesson on the Civil War. The standard lecture approach will be used. In the other classroom, the experimental group will get the same facts and ideas presented using a series of pictures and sound effects, along with the teacher’s instructions. That’s the experimental teaching approach. Again, we control for extraneous variables by making the conditions and environ- ment for the control and the experimental groups as similar as possible. In this case, for example, we would also want to run our experiment at the same time of day because performance typically varies, say, before lunch or after lunch.

5. After both groups of students have had their lesson on the Civil War, give them a test to see how well they’ve learned the material. The test for both groups will be identical. It will also be given to both groups under the same conditions and at the same time of day.

6. Compare the test scores to see if the students in the experimental group scored better or worse than those in the control group. If the scores in the experimental group are sufficiently higher than those in the control group, we’ll say we’ve shown that the experimental teaching method is superior to the standard method.

“Sufficiently higher” refers to statistical significance. That means that, under the laws of probability, the difference between scores in the control and experimental groups is great enough that it can’t be attributed to random fluctuation. In this experiment, the independent variables are the teaching methods. The dependent variable is the score each student gets on the evaluation test. If we conducted the experiment correctly, we can say that the independent variable caused the difference in the dependent variable.

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Research Challenges

Ethics of Research

Human behavior is derived from all kinds of motives. Ethical motivations, perhaps based on religious or philosophical perspectives, persuade us that subjects of research shouldn’t be harmed, physically or psychologically, by the research pro- cedure. A common principle of ethical research is called informed consent. People should be told what the research is for and what discomforts, if any, may be involved. A basic principle of informed consent is that prospective research subjects can “just say no.”

Should Animals Be Used in Research?

In fact, quite a lot of psychological research has been based on findings derived from observing animal behavior. Behaviorist B.F. Skinner based a lot of his theoretical concepts on the behavior of lab rats and pigeons. Two main questions are raised by reliance on animals in research: To what extent can we generalize animal behavior to human behavior? What constitutes cruelty to animals? There are no simple and easy answers to either question.

Experimental Validity

Research findings may or may not be valid. As an informed information “consumer,” you should understand this. Science can’t be based on opinion; it must be based on empirical (observable and measurable) data. The purpose of the research must be clear. If it’s meant to support or refute a theory, for example, that must be made explicit. The study must be properly conducted—as in the proper procedures for conducting an experiment. The results or findings must represent the actual data, not the researcher’s opinion or bias.

Experimental bias may weaken the validity of research findings. Basically, bias means seeing what we expect to see. In the case of experimenter expectations, findings may be biased when a researcher “telegraphs” what he or she expects to see from research subjects. Since research subjects are typically

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in a “peasant-to-lord” relationship, this sort of thing may lead to participant expectations bias. That is, the subjects will tend to produce behaviors and responses that the researcher seems to favor. And this sort of thing, which results from human impulses to conform to social expectations, may happen below the level of conscious awareness.

Sometimes circumstances that we don’t expect influence the outcome of experiments. The placebo effect is one these unexpected circumstances. The placebo effect occurs mostly in medical experiments, although it has also occurred in psychotherapy. In the placebo effect, people who take a placebo (a fake medicine) experience the same benefits from the drug as the people who are taking the real medicine. In other words, people who think they’re getting a remedy (though they’re not) may still show signs of improvement.

To overcome the confusion caused by the placebo effect, subjects may not be informed as to whether they’re taking the placebo or the actual drug. This is called a single-blind experiment. In a double-blind experiment, neither the patient nor the experimenter administering the pills knows who’s getting a drug or who’s getting a placebo.

Once you’ve finished studying Assignment 1, complete Self-Check 1 and the Evaluate quizzes on pages 11, 23, 34, and 41 in your textbook.

You’ll find the answers upside-down on the same page as the Evaluate

quiz.

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Self-Check 1 At the end of each section of Essentials of Psychology, you’ll be asked to pause and check

your understanding of what you’ve just read by completing a “self-check” exercise.

Answering these questions will help you review what you’ve studied so far. Please

complete Self-Check 1 now.

1. I want to study the differences in fear responses to live, harmless snakes in a population

made of roughly equal numbers of girls and boys. My research hypothesis is that boys will be

less fearful of snakes than will girls. In my research, my _______ definition of “fear” will be

heart rate.

2. While _______ psychology studies how our behavior is influenced by genetic inheritance from

our ancestors, behavioral _______ focuses on how our genes and the environment, working

together, influence specific behaviors.

3. While I might very well use psychological _______ while conducting a case study, I’ll certainly

have to have a properly drawn _______ of my study population while conducting a survey

study.

4. In an experiment, a/an _______ variable can be manipulated by the experimenter such that

the experimental group and the _______ group receive different kinds of training on how to

solve a puzzle.

5. Among today’s main psychological perspectives, only the _______ perspective proposes the

dynamic role of the unconscious in human behavior.

6. In the process of conducting scientific _______, I’ll gather data and then analyze the data.

7. In the research process called _______ observation, I might decide to observe the way

patients are treated in an actual nursing home.

8. The _______ perspective holds that each of us has the potential to seek and reach our

highest goals of fulfillment.

9. In conducting survey research, I find that the ability to solve a certain kind of problem

increases as the subjects of my study vary in age from 8 years old to 12 years old.

Taking a mathematical measure of this relationship will be the extent to which age

_______ to problem-solving ability.

10. Among major controversies in psychology, the idea that people have free will is opposed by

the assumption that behavior is caused by environmental factors. So, we could say that free

will is the opposite of _______.

Check your answers with those on page 167.

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ASSIGNMENT 2—NEUROSCIENCE AND BEHAVIOR Read this assignment. Then read Chapter 2 in your textbook.

Neurons: The Basic Elements of Behavior

The Structure of the Neuron

At this moment, there are billions of cells in your body. Nearly all of them are specialized as tissues. Tissues are groups of cells that are similar in appearance and perform special tasks. Specialized cells make up your voluntary mus- cles, your heart, and other organs of the body. Neurons are the specialized cells of the nervous system. They’re designed to transmit signals—called nerve impulses—along the “wiring system” of the body that connects the nervous system to all the other body tissues. Such “wires” are called nerves.

You should understand that a string of neurons is connected so that the axon fibers of one neuron are linked to the dendrites of another. This kind of linkage continues along the fiber until we find a network of axon termin

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