Neuropsychology

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In five years time I believe I will remember the few beginning chapters of the semester that dealt with the physiological aspect of the brain. I hope to go to medical school within the next couple of years so I will be dealing a lot with neuroscience, anatomy, and physiology. The reason why I think I will remember this part of the course because I find comfort in science that is more solid and factual than the more obscure aspects of personality and social issues. Even though I enjoy many fields of science, I like being able to concretely describe and define certain fields and also participate in research.

Neuropsychology

| 1 Comment

In five years time I believe I will remember the few beginning chapters of the semester that dealt with the physiological aspect of the brain. I hope to go to medical school within the next couple of years so I will be dealing a lot with neuroscience, anatomy, and physiology. The reason why I think I will remember this part of the course because I find comfort in science that is more solid and factual than the more obscure aspects of personality and social issues. Even though I enjoy many fields of science, I like being able to concretely describe and define certain fields and also participate in research.

Neuropsychology

| 1 Comment

In five years time I believe I will remember the few beginning chapters of the semester that dealt with the physiological aspect of the brain. I hope to go to medical school within the next couple of years so I will be dealing a lot with neuroscience, anatomy, and physiology. The reason why I think I will remember this part of the course because I find comfort in science that is more solid and factual than the more obscure aspects of personality and social issues. Even though I enjoy many fields of science, I like being able to concretely describe and define certain fields and also participate in research.

5 years, human development

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I was extremely fascinated by the human development. I think the concepts of human sexual relations and a woman's body adapting to pregnancy are very interesting. In chapter 10, sections 10.3- 10.6 were possibly my favorite out of the entire book. The photos of the embryo, fetus, and the recognizably human form were very mesmerizing. Normally, I would see these photos in a icky email forwards where they are really unappealing, but seeing them in the text book, where they belong for informational purposes was really exciting for me. What also stuck with me was that the brain starts developing after only 18 days of fertilization! Can you believe that?!
Motor development also was pretty interesting, especially the factors that influence it. Some of the key factors were physical maturation, which depends on the child's body weight. Cultural and parenting practicing were huge factors in development. Many babies are swaddled because it resembles much of the mothers womb. This occurs a lot in Peru and China. I liked the concept of reaching for a cup of coffee and how many physical adjustments our body has to make before we are able to do that, and how much physical maturation we must have developed before we can do certain things. I think its really cool that our bodies can adapt our physical abilities to almost any situation. Many of these movements depend on our weight, and maintaining a healthy weight is key to have exceptional motor and physical ability.


New hope

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Several years from now I'll still remember how psychologists can employ tactics in operant conditioning to treat children with autism. The video that we watched about this really fascinated and uplifted me. I was surprised at how much it seemed to hit home considering I don't even know anyone with autism. I am a psychology major unknowing of which specific direction I'd like to take in the field, but this video inspired me to want to work with children as well as adults with autism.

I think it's amazing that people many years ago used to think this disorder doomed its victims to a life of isolation and uselessness to society, and yet today we know how to help these individuals lead fulfilling lives. It's incredibly inspirational. The advancements aren't technological; they stem from psychological findings purely related to human interactions. A psychologist can serve as a teacher who uses positive reinforcement gently to guide a child to certain desirable behaviors. In a relatively short amount of time, a child with autism can learn to sit on her chair when asked. She only needs patience when she does not obey and rewards when she begins to obey.

I think psychologists who use operant conditioning treat children with autism have one of the most rewarding jobs out there. I feel fortunate just to have been able to learn about this phenomenal progress and to be given a great motivation to try to be apart of and possibly even expand it.

This site provides some further information on such treatments:
http://aimautismservices.com/program_description.html

Future Me?

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So I think that the form of psychology that I will use the most would be the developmental psychology. My goal in 5 years is to hopefully be working in either the children's ward of a hospital or at a children's hospital as a nurse or a nurse's assistant. /Users/nikkisomppi/Desktop/Rachel+Hunter+Visits+Sydney+Children+Hospital+-2dWyk5zAmdl.jpg
I think it would be very interesting to see the developmental differences that certain children have whether they are sick with a developmental disability or an illness. Children are adorable and can be studied without them even understanding what is going on because they are learning at their own speed of learning. For example a friend's daughter is a little over a year old and she is already coloring with crayons!
That is why I think that I would use child psychology and developmental psychology in 5 years!

Principles of Scientific Thinking

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To be perfectly honest, the aspect of this course that will most likely stay with me the longest is that of the six principles of scientific thinking. So incessantly drilled into our memories were these concepts at the onset of each chapter quiz, that I don't think they will ever leave me. However, there is another reason, and that is that this is my first social sciences-oriented class in college, and my first exposure to such principles. Upon becoming familiar with them, I immediately became quite interested with them and began constantly applying them to other situations and disciplines in my life which they seemed to very often be applicable, certainly more so than I would have originally anticipated.

Most significantly for me personally is parsimony. The scientific principle of parsimony is truly one of the most important mind sets one can develop. I now am constantly searching, mentally analyzing every decision I come across to ascertain whether or not my choice is going to represent the most simplistic, straight-forward answer. "Entities should not be multiplied beyond necessity" is, of course, Occam's Razor and will feature prominently for me especially in the next few years wherein I will be studying philosophy, but more than that, it features prominently in my every day life as well. More than just my views on science, parsimony has lately dictated my views on religion, politics, and even music. I owe psych 1001 the credit for this.

Here's an informative article on the subject!

http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/424706/Ockhams-razor

"P" is for "Paja" & "Psychology."

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It's been a crazily amazing first semester for me as a first year undergraduate student at the University of Minnesota. PSY 1001 and psychology itself has given so much more input with a broader outlook on human nature and why we think, and behave the way we do.

I have touched based on familiar concepts that I have learned throughout my high school years, and I've also acquired so much more, adding on to my new knowledge and emphasizing the different concepts that are related to not just the course itself, but also to everyday life.

I know for a fact that I will remember many concepts five years from now. However, I think the concepts on personality will always give me insight to not just my life, but to the lives of others. From my previous blog, I've talked about my interests in personality, and in all honest truth, the topic of personality itself will always amaze me. Digging deep into it will leave us with complex thoughts and questions that will leave us curious with the will to understand more. Then again, that is an aspect of psychology that will always leave us looking for more answers regardless of what it may be.

Jersey Chasing? It's only natural.

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This semester I was very intrigued by Chapter 11 in the book: Emotion and Motivation. In particular, there was a section named Attraction, Love, and Hate: The Greatest Mysteries Of Them All. What I found fascinating in this section was the fact that they explained the differences in what men and women find attractive in each other. Obviously, I thought, this could help me out in the future! The book explained that women have to put more time and effort, or Parental Investment as the book says, into having offspring than men do. In turn, women look more for partners with status and the ability to provide. Men, on the other hand, look at health and attractiveness more than anything else.

I thought this was quite funny because I kind of agree with it. Whenever I like someone or think they are cute, all my friends totally disagree! Literally every single time I like someone, everybody else thinks he is ugly. This shows that I am less into what a guy looks like. I'm not necessarily into how 'popular' a guy is, but I definitely am interested in how well rounded and well he gets along with other people.

This trend is also very prevalent in the media, especially with shows such as Basketball Wives and Football Wives. These shows are solely based on the fact that gorgeous women with beautiful bodies are dating, not necessarily good-looking men, but men with fame, money, and status.

basketball-wives-season-3.jpg


It may seem very superficial, but the idea that men look for beautiful women and women look for men with status all has to do with the biology of sexes.

Sources:

Psychology: From Inquiry to Understanding (Scott Lilienfeld, Steven Lynn, Laura Namy, and Nancy Woolf)

The Biology of Sleep

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After the completion of PSY 1001, no other concept will remain as interesting to me as the concept of sleep in Chapter 5, The Biology of Sleep in the Lilienfeld text. For years I have continuously had interesting dreams. I constantly dip in and out of dreams and always wondered how and why they happened. After reading the Lilenfeld text and learning about sleep in lecture, I am now able to share my knowledge of sleep with others. I know that there are five stages of sleep. In stage 1, I know that my brain is powering down by 50% and I am more relaxed and scrambled, bizarre, and dreamlike images flit in and out of my consciousness. During stage 2 of sleep, my body temperature decreases, my muscles relaz and my eye movements ceases. This is where I spend 65% of my sleep. In stages 3 and 4, I am in a much deeper slow-wave sleep. In stage 5 is where I experience REM sleep, the stage in which sleep during which the brain is most active and during which vivid dreaming often occurs.

I also know that when I become aware of my dreaming, I am experiencing lucid dreaming. This happens to me often, and now that I have taken the course, I can finally understand what this concept is and put a name to my experiences when I share them with others. Also, I will be able to tell them that the theory that our dreams only occur in a few seconds is false. It is more likely that if I felt I was dreaming for 45 minutes, I actually was dreaming for that amount of time.

Lastly, because of the psychological concept of extraordinary claims, I will not be prone to believe so quickly the dream theories that psychics predict about your dreams.

I am extremely happy that the concept of sleep, amongst several other PSY concepts and ideas, are ones that will remain with me for a long time. I am glad that I will be able to share my newfound knowledge with others!

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