Writing #4: April 2012 Archives

Personality is forever...

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The thing that I will remember most from this psychology class, will be the emphasis and time spent on personality. Everyone is different in some way, and that is what I have always found so interesting. Why people do what they do and getting a better understanding of why they do what they do because of the knowledge I have gained from this class will help me in the future. No matter what area or field of study you go into after college, you will most likely have to work with other people. The more you know about personalities and how to cope and coexist and even bring the best out of each other, the better and happier you will be with your career. The importance of personalities in my life has been something that has always been of interest to me. I have always found people's separate personalities an interesting thing to observe. I like to watch how people act around others and I like to analyze them. The information I have learned from this class has just made everything more interesting. In order to remember stuff, especially five years down the road, it has to be something that is interesting to you. This was a section that was interesting to me and I will remember much of the information because of it.

Greetings bloggers,

Today we were asked to reflect on what we will take away from psychology. In response to what will I still remember 5 years from today, ironically I will remember the chapter on memory. Whether it is facts about short term (10 to 15 seconds and 7 plus or minus two items), long term, how we remember, or how our memory network works, I will never forget these interesting facts.
The chapter on memory is also very applicable to our academic careers and lives. I learned many ways on how to improve my memory during psychology. First and foremost, do not cram. I have always crammed for my tests, and although people have told me it was bad, I never truly understood why it was bad so my habits continued. Now that we have learned how our memory network works, I have a greater understanding of why not to cram. Another way that memory is applicable to my life moving forward is I now know that we remember things better that we can symbolize or visualize. I try to attach meaning to items that I want to remember, and it helps me remember them later. These are the reasons why memory is something that I will never forget.

What I will remember

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I have learned so much this semester in psychology that hopefully I will remember everything, especially since psychology is such an interesting topic and things that have to do with your everyday life. But if I had to choose one concept that I will definitely remember forever it would be from Chapter 12, Stress, coping and health. I have really bad anxiety problems so I can really relate to this topic. Of course I have researched a lot about anxiety and stress, plus my doctor has told me many things but after learning about it in psychology it really taught me the most i'm ever going to know. I can now see how to deal with stress before a big exam etc. It also taught me that i'm not completely crazy for being so stressed all the time, and it happens to people just as much as it happens to me, even worse. So i know for the rest of my life I will think back to this semester of psychology and remember how to deal with all of my stress and anxiety.

What will stick with me

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What shocked me the most were the conformity section and the shock test (Pun intended). Most people would say they are not influenced by others but through these studies, are clearly lying. What's more, the fact that people of authority have more influence than should be necessary. In the shock test, because the guy was wearing a white coat, he was always right. Essentially he got sixty percent of people to "kill" another human being because it was for "a study". That fact alone will stick with me for a while. Some of the people were not even broken up about applying a shock that they knew to be incredibly painful to another person. I guess if I were in that situation, I would really hope that I would not conform and be able to stand up to someone in a situation where I was knowingly harming someone. Another thing that surprised me was how easily people can be manipulated into conforming. The group of people in an elevator all standing in the same direction and causing someone to conform and change their behaviors so quickly was quite frankly astonishing. I think this happens because people do not like to create waves and fitting in to feel more comfortable.

What I'll Remember

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I have learned so many things throughout this Psychology course. However, just like any other semester-long course, it is impossible for me to retain all of that knowledge. While many things will slip from my memory, I know there will be a few psychological concepts that I will definitely be able to remember in five years. The one concept that I believe I will be able to recall most clearly in five years is the concept of love and intimate relationships, and how psychology influences them. In five years I will be almost 25, the age where many people start to settle down with someone that they believe they can spend the rest of their life with. To find this person, attraction and the psychological influences come in to play. There is a good chance that I will be attracted to someone that I see on a regular basis, and according to our textbook, I will find someone with the most "average" looking face the most attractive. And if I am already in a relationship with someone, I will know about the triangle of love, and I will be able to categorize how my relationship is based on passion, intimacy and commitment. Hopefully it will be all three!

Sparked Interest

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When we were asked to think about the concept that we will remember the most in 5 years, my mind went racing. I have learned so much over the semester! A few things that come to mind are personality differences, psychological disorders, and differences between cultures. I have always been interested differences between people and what actually makes them different, and I have loved learning more about these things this semester. I would have never thought that collectivist cultures would interpret and value things differently than an individualistic society, such as our own. I have some close friends that would be considered part of a collectivist culture, and I never understood that it would make such a difference between how they and I think. Something I found interesting this semester was how similar we all are in basic brain functioning and thinking, but then how different we can interpret and view the world. Taking this course this semester has made me curious, intuitive, and has changed how I view others around me. I think that will be what I remember most after 5 years; how my way of thinking about others completely changed over the course of this semester. My mind has been opened.

Please pardon my title, and I'm sorry if you were forced to read it more then once. If you did you might have even encoded it into your memory, for which I am also sorry took up your valuable cranial real estate (just in time for finals as well). Even imagining how the brain can accomplish something like this still baffles me. By going through this class i have learned just enough to avoid my brain overheating while thinking about thinking. Although I am still far from comfortable with my understanding of the mind, i feel content with my grasp of the human mind. 5 years from now I feel that not only will I remember how I remembered this unit, but will be actively seeking information in this field to satisfy my curiosity. I look forward to the day when scientists have unlocked more secrets of this process, as I am still waiting for answers to a lot of my questions.

Before taking this course, I thought psychology is just talking about how we feels. While in fact it is only a part of psychology, and now I would say learning psychology is discovering the way we think. Although we are thinking at any time, we can't realize how we think. I feel psychology is the subject teaching people the fundemental ways of how our brain works, from how we see the world to how we learn things and think. But we don't have to know any psychology, it is not like other courses if we don't know that we can't do that. Isn't it ridiculous if I say you can't learn because you don't know the classical conditioning.
Also psychology is not like math or physics which has some basic rules and we can combine those rules and got more. It has hundreds of seperated knowledges and each of them explain only a small part. Just as what our professor said in the first class, we are not able to estimate what would a person do next. Maybe because our brain is too much functional, we just can't keep ourselves on some rules everytime. And the sad thing is that we have to remember so many points before a psychology exam. I wish that one day someone could find a theroy to explain all of these points, and that will be a great breakthrough of psychology.

What I Will Take With Me

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We have learned so much through the semester, when asked what I would I remember five years from now so many things came to mind. I thought about conditioning, development, personalities, and much more. When I really thought about all I have learned and how it will change my thinking from here on out, I thought of the six scientific thinking principles and everything they can apply to. Learning about those, remind me to really think about information you are receiving and analyze it like a scientist, instead of taking everything you hear as gospel. Although we have learned so much, these six principles really relate to everything. Basically, the most important thing is to really think for yourself and investigate further before believing everything you hear. It's not that we shouldn't trust anyone we meet, but healthy skepticism is great way to find out the truth and not be fooled with nonsense. I will take that message with me most of all, however I will try to remember all the other psychological knowledge I have acquired throughout the semester.

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Social Psychology

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While we have studied several concepts, ideas, and experiments in psychology 1001, there is one that sticks out the most to me; The Milgram Experiment. This is the experiment where Stanley Milgram studied subjects obedience to authority figures by administering voltage shocks to another person. What fascinated me the most was the large percentage of people who went past the lethal amount of voltage for a human. What scares me about this experiment is that it could be very plausible for someone like me, who doesn't get satisfaction from seeing other people hurt, to go beyond that lethal voltage dose. It's no surprise that these findings caused a stir in the psychology world. While it doesn't help to explain why we are so obedient to authority figures, it does help to explain some historical catastrophes like the holocaust. I will remember this experiment for years to come because it can be seen in everyday situations in all of our lives. Whether it's at work where you are following the orders of your boss even though you think they are wrong. Or it could be at school with your group leader. This also raises the question of believing someone or something because of its status. I believe that understanding the basis of this experiment can help anyone be more confident in respectfully questioning certain sources and being able to evaluate the outcomes and other alternatives.

We've learned so many things this semester, but I think one thing that will stick with me quite a bit is how important and crucial development is. Working with a lot of young children through volunteering, as well as with my nephews has really showed me how important development in all forms is in the growth of a child. What stuck with me is how much I influence the younger children I am around, how important nutrition is, and how important it is to have a healthy and safe environment for children to grow into excellent adults. The ideas provided within the development chapter have reminded me how to be a good aunt, and Amplatz volunteer and I think that chapter will really have a lasting impact on me. This course also helped teach me about myself, and helped me to further realize my interest in child psychology and development. Since taking this course, I am now considering a future in neonatal or childhood development or nutrition which I find interesting, because I hadn't thought much about that before. Hopefully, I'll continue to learn more and be able to help make a difference with my newfound psychology knowledge!

Throughout this semester their has been many different concepts that we have covered, all of which have been important. However one of the concepts that I believe will stick with me for some time is what we covered in Chapter 9 on Intelligence and IQ testing. While we were going over this chapter in lecture we also covered this topic in discussion. The conversations that we had in discussion have stuck with me thus far and I believe that it will continue to stick with me far into the future. Although I have always found IQ testing and intelligence interesting I find it even more interesting now due to the ideas about how it could be used in hiring processes.

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I had never really thought about how IQ testing could be used as part of an interview process. In ways it makes sense as many jobs require certain type of people and as the jobs become more important IQ's can show how one may perform in that job. However I also found it disturbing that people would be tested in such a manner to determine whether or not they are fit for the job. Many people struggle with testing under pressure and many people have qualities that make them suitable for jobs besides their intelligence. Therefore this will stick with me because as I go further into schooling and later into a career I will work hard to express my thoughts and make sure that everyone looks at more than just a cover.

One of the most interesting aspects about Psychology that I will surely remember later on in life is what to ignore. Specifically, the six scientific thinking principles and how we can apply them to our everyday lives. It the most common theme in the book because it appears in every section of every chapter, and I believe it was one of the easiest concepts to understand.

While watching television or perusing through advertisements it is almost comical how often one of these six principles are violated. An obvious example is a tv show about UFO sitings. Somehow, someone compiled enough information to babble on about some UFO they saw for an hours worth of a program and we surely know now by Occam's Razor, that there was much likely a more reasonable explanation for what they saw.

After a semester of Psychology and hundreds of examples of applications of the six scientific thinking principles, finding them in the real world is easy. I suppose that I have created a misleading title. In fact, I now find myself paying more attention to advertisements and obscure eyewitness accounts just for the sake of being able to point out their scientific flaws. This being said, though I pay more attention to them, I certainly discredit them much more often.

Throughout the course of Psychology 1001, we have learned about the 6 Principles of Psychology: Ruling out Rival Hypotheses, Correlation v. Causation, Falsifiability, Replicability, Occam's Razor, and Extraordinary Claims. The principle that I have used the most in my everyday life is the Extraordinary Claims rule. For a long time I have been fascinated by television shows like Paranormal State on A&E and A Haunting on The Discovery Channell. In fact, these types of shows used to keep me up at night because they seemed so real! However, after learning about the principles of psychology, I have come to realize that many of these shows are staged and their "evidence" of paranormal activity usually goes unsupported. For example, in the show A Haunting they have people narrating their terrifying experiences and have real actors and actresses portray the scene for the episodes. This seems highly unreliable because many times TV producers exaggerate information in order to attract viewers. What one needs to think about is if these extraordinary claims have extraordinary evidence to back them up. In most cases, the evidence is not strong enough.

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Throughout the course of Psychology 1001, we have learned about the 6 Principles of Psychology: Ruling out Rival Hypotheses, Correlation v. Causation, Falsifiability, Replicability, Occam's Razor, and Extraordinary Claims. The principle that I have used the most in my everyday life is the Extraordinary Claims rule. For a long time I have been fascinated by television shows like Paranormal State on A&E and A Haunting on The Discovery Channell. In fact, these types of shows used to keep me up at night because they seemed so real! However, after learning about the principles of psychology, I have come to realize that many of these shows are staged and their "evidence" of paranormal activity usually goes unsupported. For example, in the show A Haunting they have people narrating their terrifying experiences and have real actors and actresses portray the scene for the episodes. This seems highly unreliable because many times TV producers exaggerate information in order to attract viewers. What one needs to think about is if these extraordinary claims have extraordinary evidence to back them up. In most cases, the evidence is not strong enough.

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Over the past semester, I found the unit on personality to be the most interesting. I myself, am a people person, therefore I love being around different people and their personalities. Reflecting on myself, I tend to associate with people who have similar personalities to me. These people are outgoing, speak their mind, spontaneous and have a good sense of humor. The reason I enjoyed this chapter so much was because it was very interesting to see how our personalities affect one's lifestyle. I also found it very interesting to learn that how someone is raised can greatly alter their personality causing them to be reserved or extraverted. Also, before this chapter, I never really thought that genetics can play a large role in how someone's personality is perceived. Something else from this unit that I thought was the strangest was learning about ectomorphs, mesomorphs and endomorphs. After learning about how your body type can affect your personality I thought of people I knew, and there body types and could see a connection. I will remember the concepts from the personality unit five years from now because I found it interesting to learn more about my own personality and how it has affected who I am today.

Personality

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Technology is destroying our personalities. We are so focused out our texting and Facebook and Twitter, that we can't make connections with the people that are right in front of our faces. Everybody has a personality, and in whatever you do, you will have to interact with people, so it only makes sense to really learn how different personalities interact with each other, and what types of personalities work well together. No two people are alike because of their personalities. Personality is the distinctive characteristic patterns of thought, emotion, and behavior that uniquely define an individual. Some people may have similar personalities, but there is always one trait that sets two people apart.
Five years from now, personality will definitely still be looked at in Psychology. In fact, I believe that personality is something that will always be looked at in everything we do. Everybody needs to interact with people to create our society. People are not making the direct personal contact that is necessary to create relationships, because they are glued to their phones and to Facebook. If we do not take a step back from technology, we will forget the feeling of interacting with each other, and we will ruin our society.

One concept in Psychology that I think I'll remember 5 years from now is the development of the mind. This is because I've already spent so much time outside of class applying the ideas of nature v nurture, attachment styles, class/race differences, etc. in the context of others' behavior. This class has provided me with an interesting lens through which to observe how others behave. If somebody is acting in a manner that I am totally baffled by, it's fun to try and look at the world through their eyes and empathize. Basically this class has taught me that there's a somewhat "logical" reason for everything that everyone does. Something that somebody else does that may seem stupid, or irrational, or downright crazy to me would usually seem like a rational thing to that person.
A second concept that I'm going to remember is Kohlbergs theory of morality. The entire morality unit has made it so that I strive to achieve post-conventional morality for important decisions, and not just stop at conventional. This is hard, but I believe that this idea will help me make better decisions throughout my life.

There are many interesting knowledge that I learned about in this psychology class, that will help me a lot in the future. If I have to decide on one, I would say that one of the most useful things I learned in class was in the lectures about Memory. In class, we learned about different mnemonic techniques such as visualizing, the key word method, method of loci, and narrative technique. All the mnemonic techniques were pretty useful, but the method of loci (locations) was the one that I think will especially help me in the future. Method of loci is good for remembering a speech you have to do. First you memorize a sequence of objects, and then think of somewhere you know very well. And then imagine walking through the roads, and put the objects at places in the road/street/room. Visualize that image such as a window and correlate it with the point you want to make. This technique, I think will help me very much in the future, in presentations and speechs. Next semester, I'm going to be taking a public speaking class, and I'm going to use the method of loci all the time!

Final Blog Social Psych

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The one concept that I will take from psychology this year would probably have to be one of the more recent chapters. In chapter 13 they discussed social psychology and how it applies in real world. How something that as we read seems like something we would never do but everyday people who think like that fall to conformity and other things that just seem absurd to me. I believe in being an individual is important. If you stand out don't think of it as something bad but more unique. Something I will always remember is to be me regardless of what other people say. I guess it is tough to say since I haven't been in the situation but I feel that I would be able to stand out and be my own individual. Also an interesting concept was right towards the end. When they talked about foot in the door or other terms like that. I previously knew about sale gimmicks like that. Learning tactics to not have sales people do that to you is probably something important. Barging and making sure you are not being scammed seems like important tools to have.

What I Will Remember

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The thing I am probably most going to remember from Psychology is the effects different diseases have on the brain. My mother was diagnosed with memory problems most often related to Alzheimer's this past fall. While I already knew what I should expect down the road I found the explanation and image in the book of what actually happens to the brain extremely helpful. Its hard not to get frustrated with my Mothers problem, I think this has to do with the nature of not knowing what exactly to expect and how to respond to it. Learning about the brain has allowed me to better understand what my mom is going through and also what is going through my own head in response. The brain is extremely complex and to have a better understanding of what can happen to it because of different diseases is an important first step to coming up with a way to stop them. Seeing numerous different diseases and there effects has also calmed my fears not necessarily because I feel my mom's could be worse but because I know there are many many other families dealing with neurological diseases and knowing that gives me some hope that in the future there will be a breakthrough that helps treat Alzheimer's and all the other diseases. Often I have heard people refer to Alzheimer's as the long good by, but with the help of medication and further research I think that reference will be a thing of the past and hopefully one day become forgotten itself. I am grateful for what I have learned in Psychology 1001 and as I am going into a career in education I think what I have learned will become evermore useful at home and in the classroom.

One of the main psychology sections that I will remember five years from now is the lesson about the Biology of Sleep. I had never studied the sleep cycle before and I thought it was really interesting to learn that our bodies have their own biological clock and it's not necessarily my fault if I start to get drowsy in psych lecture ;) because it's my body's natural response! I also was interested in this topic because I talk to so many other people that have such a hard time falling asleep and they wake up a lot during the night but I can fall asleep within 5 minutes of laying down. It always seemed so weird to me that I would never wake up in the middle of the night and it was interesting to read that section in the book and figure out that it's not that I sleep different than those people, I just don't remember my dreams and I go into a deeper stage of sleep that some people might. I was also interested to find out that we go into REM sleep multiple times in one night and I will never forget that because sometimesstudent sleeping.gif I remember dreams from these different stages. Overall I just thought this was an interesting topic and I don't believe I will ever forget the Biology of Sleep.

Personality at its finest

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I found Psychology to be a very interesting and extremely benefical class for me to take. I am going to school to have a career in counceling and many, many things that we have learned in class can in some way pertain to my career. I found the chapter on personality to be one of the most interesting subjects, and found that much of the information will be helpful in my future career. In lecture we learned the definition of personality is distinctive characteristic patterns of
thought, emotion, and behavior that uniquely define an individual. There are two concepts of personality, nomothetic and idiographic. Nomothetic talks about how everyone has certain traits that are similar across all people to some degree, and idographic is talking about unique attributes that you cant compare across people. This topic really drew me in and got me thinking. It makes perfect sense what these two topics are saying because there has to be some similarity in traits among people or we would never be able to function as a society. On the same note though we are, in fact, our own self and everyone is an individual. We may all have some similar traits, but it is also very obvious that many people are extremely different from one another. This gets me interested in looking farther into it.

Years from now, I will still remember the psychological aspects of males and females. I found learning of biological and evolutionary psychology to be the articulation of concepts I had already observed in relationships, family life, and society. Innate personality differences, maternal and paternal tendencies, reproductive behaviors, and many observable behaviors from human biological history are extremely prevalent, even more so upon learning more in-depth why there are prevalent.
One example is a females "picky" behavior when selecting a mate. The nine month gestation period creates a biological drive to select an appropriate mate who will remain with the woman bearing child. Other traits factoring into a woman's picky behavior include physically appealing traits. Physical size and build appeal so a male could serve as protection from predators. Physical attributes also appeal, because there is a biological drive for both males and females to seek out the best desirable traits to pass along to their offspring.
Another aspect of the psychology of gender differences is the way that infants are treated. Gender stereotypes are applied to infants early in life, before gender characteristics have hardly developed. Language and tone of voice used when addressing an infant greatly reflect gender stereotypes, and gender expectations.
Awareness of these psychological topics is important to me. I think sexism starts at a young age, and deeply imbedded psychological aspects of genderism and sexism greatly impact the perpetuation of stereotypes and societal norms of female and male.

In five years from now, I will most likely remember the concept of classical conditioning--especially as it pertains to business--from PSY 1001. Advertising accounts for a large percentage of business today. What do you do when you have a product you need to sell? You advertise. Classical conditioning--specifically, higher-order conditioning--provides advertisers with the knowledge to make their ads "stick" with the viewer. By using classical conditioning, advertisers attempt to pair their brands with positive emotions so that consumers purchase more of their products. And selling more products, as we already know, equals more money. As a future businessman myself, who may or may not work in advertising (that remains to be seen), I believe that this concept is the one I will remember the most. It is, perhaps, the concept that is most applicable and most useful in my future.

That being said, I'm sure I will remember other concepts from Psychology this year. For example, I will probably remember persuasion techniques, which I found extremely interesting and useful, and I will probably remember some stress-management techniques that I learned in Chapter 12.

Overall, I have learned a great deal of information from this class and, honestly, it's been a complete joy!

Signing up for classes, I was somewhat skeptical on what Psychology 1001 would be all about. I honestly never dreamed that it would be so in depth, and would be able to explain nearly everything a living organism does. I appreciate what we have learned in the class greatly, because I know that I will find it useful in the future. I'm am currently attending school for Retail Merchandising, and hope to land myself a job as a buyer for clothing store. Until taking this class, I never actually realized how closely related my major, and psychology are.
As a buyer, you are responsible for selecting items to stock a store with, based on your predictions of how popular you think that item will be amongst consumers. In this process, it is extremely important for a buyer to observe the behaviors and tendencies of the consumers that shop at the store they are buying for. When a buyer is able to do this, he or she is able to provide items for the store, which will satisfy the consumers wants and needs. It is also a Buyer's responsibility to to forecast fashions that will surface months or years down the road. In order to do this, a buyer is required to study past and present fashion trends, while always keeping in mind the persona their store is aiming to please.
In order to excel in this type of position, it is crucial for me to take into account the psychology of humans, specifically when they shop. I am excited to dig deeper into my major and uncover other ways psychology plays a role in the retail buying process.

It may sound boring that the concepts that I think I will remember from PSY 1001 are scientific thinking principles. They run through the whole book and remind me thinking in a critical way at all times. Even the major Freudian defense mechanisms are problems related to occam's razor and ruling out rival hypotheses. I will probably be a psychology major student in the future five years, and hopefully I will get opportunities to do psychological researches. When I draw conclusions, I think I need to keep these scientific thinking principles in mind. Maybe the variables are not correlated with each other.
Another impressed concept is discussed in Chapter 13. Conformity and obedience. Right before I studied this concept, I watched a great movie called The Wave. It is based on a true story that a high school history teacher did an experiment of dictatorship in order to teach fascism. Things then turned out to be out of control. Fascism is pervasive among students. They all rushed to join the group with discipline and followed the teacher's order under any circumstances. When students all wore white shirt at school, they are very likely to pose pressure on the girl who refused to wear white shirt and jeans. If she surrenders herself, it is an example of conformity. The group members learned to whatever the teacher said, which is obedience. It is so easy for spectators to point out that some instructions from authority are unreasonable, but people who are inside just can't help resisting the power of authorities. I think there will always be alternatives instead of simply following instructions.
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Hypnosis

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One of my favorite concepts we covered this semester was that of hypnosis. It wasn't a huge portion of our reading but there were about 3 pages on the topic. Earlier in the year, actually during welcome week I had the opportunity to be hypnotized myself. It was a very cool experience and I can't wait to try it again. When I found out our psych book had a section on hypnosis, I was very intrigued to gain a deeper knowledge on the subject and see if my thoughts and ideas on the topic matched up with the book's. In our book one of the common myths associated with hypnosis is that the people are unaware of their surroundings. I was a believer of this myth until I experienced it for myself. While hypnotized I was aware of the audience and could even make out my friends in the crowd. Another myth that was mention was that hypnotized people forget what happened during hypnosis. I never knew the truth to this statement until I experienced it for myself. I was able to recall every event that took place. Overall this section is a great overview on the topic of hypnosis and is a very interesting read. The facts on hypnosis will for sure stay with me for a long time.

You know you sang the title of this blog and the rest of the lyrics :)

But really, what is love?
lensheart.jpgI know that I haven't really figured it out, but many psychologists such as Robert Sternberg
believe that different forms of love can be classified under three categories: Intimacy (liking), Passion (infatuation) and Commitment (empty love). These categories then overlap in Sternberg's Triangular Theory of Love, where intimacy + passion = romantic love, passion + commitment = fatuous love, and commitment + intimacy = compassionate love.

What happens when you have all three forms of love? You get consummate love, essentially the ultimate form of love (yay!).

But why is this theory of any significance? Aren't we suppose to determine what love is through our own personal relationships? Not through a theory some random man with a degree made up? Well, the theory can come into play when determining where our current relationships stand, and possibly identify any "missing gaps" to achieve the total package of love. Or, we may use the theory to possibly sort out our emotions and determine what kind of love we're even looking for. For example, say you're feeling too young for a committed relationship and all you really want is to be with someone you care for and do the horizontal boogie (sex) at times — then you would strive for romantic love (intimacy + passion).

I feel as five years down the line, I would remember a psychological concept like this. Because when it comes down to it, love is a psychological emotion that becomes conveyed into action (hopefully). Emotions never escape us, and love is something that we naturally fall into at some point in life. The theory can help us find out where we are now, and in turn where we want to be. But love isn't just some cookie cutter process that the theory makes it out to be. Love is felt and shared in different ways in which understanding what it really is becomes a unique experience for everyone.

Psych + nursing = <3

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I think that in five years, one thing from psychology that will be applied often and remembered will be Maslow's hierarchy of needs. In five years, I will hopefully have by BSN and working as an RN. According to the hierarchy of needs, there is a pyramid shaped classification of needs. The hierarchy from bottom to top classifies: physiological/ biological needs (e.g. water, food, sleep) safety needs (e.g. sense of security, danger prevention) love and belonging needs (e.g. acceptance, giving and receiving of love), self esteem needs (e.g. independence, gaining respect, and doing something worthwhile), and self-actualization. The textbook defines self-actualization as "the drive to develop our innate potential to the fullest possible extent". The pyramid-shape symbolizes both how the farther up the pyramid you get, the smaller number of people who reach that level (hence the narrowing at the top), and that the lower levels are supposedly needed to be reached before the upper levels can be reached (hence the building upon each other). Here lies a criticism that the book has with Maslow's theory, the authors say that a starving artist can make beautiful art, fulfilling higher up needs without achieving the physiological need of food.
A nurse's role includes what is called whole person care. If your patient is having medical issues, such as high blood pressure, but they don't have a physiological cause for this, it would be a good idea to ask if they are stressed. It is possible that one of their other needs has not met, perhaps they don't feel safe or they feel their family is neglecting them. If this need is found, it can be resolved, by possibly calling up the family to come visit or figuring out the source of the fear.
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True Learning

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It was when I was in junior high school that I first learned about Pavlov's classical conditioning. I memorized that reflexes mostly dependent on autonomic nervous system such as knee jerk is unconditional response and salivating when thinking of the sour taste of lemon is conditional response. And that was it. It wasn't until I took this course when I learned how widely the concept could be applied. We first learned how classical conditioning is commonly used in commercials to make the consumers response to a conditional stimulus, the advertising product. And classical conditioning can also explain acquisition of phobias and fetishes. Distinguishing from classical conditioning we also learned operant conditioning and its real life applications. We saw a video depicting how B. F. Skinner trained a pigeon by shaping by successive approximations. And Professor Peterson showed a very interesting video about treating autistic children. The video was so remarkable that I had to watch it again. I never knew that operant conditioning by reinforcement can lead to a dramatic improvement on those children.
The most important psychology concept I learned through this course is classical and operant conditioning, not the concept itself but how it can be applied to our daily life. I don't think I truly learned classical conditioning when I memorized the salivating dog is conditionally responding to the metronome. When watching how autistic children learn to make eye contacts with others and speak was the true moment that I learned what operant conditioning is. I learned through this course that concepts or theories are valuable when they bring real life differences.

Remembering PSY 1001

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Psychology is a very interesting subject. Social psychology was my favorite topic. It showed some real world applications of psychology. Although my major has nothing to do to do with psychology it was a class worth taking. The part about psychology I will remember the most five years from now is memory. I was not expecting to learn about memory in this class but I am glad I got the chance to. I gained knowledge of short-term memory and long term memory. While short term memory is a lot shorter than most would think, long term memory can be stored for decades. I also learned great encoding and retrieval methods. For example learning new information in a mnemonic device helps encoding. Also context-dependent learning is another example of a retrieval method I learned a good way to study is to self-test. I learned to be critical of drugs that improve memory. I also learned to be aware of false memories and the misinformation effect. It really shows how human can be manipulated by their own memories and other people. I think the biggest gain from the memory section was to be aware that memories can be reconstructed and changed. Although many people think personal memories never change, they do.

The psychology subject I think I'll remember most about five years from now would probably the various times we covered drug addiction. I never understood how or why people got addicted to drugs.

I thought it was really interesting how operant conditioning works in addiction and how taking a drug again escapes withdrawal and is thus maintained by negative reinforcement. It is also facinating how the body has a compensatory response to drugs and so users experience the opposite of what they were trying to experience by taking the drug.

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I would say this is important to my life because I am planning on going into nursing and possibly public health nursing so I am sure that I will stumble on more than a few people who are addicted to drugs or were once addicted to drugs and dealing with the adverse health effects.

After taking this psychology course, I have learned much about the filed of psychology that I would have never otherwise thought existed. I never knew how in depth psychology could get and how there is such a broad range of information and facts that all comes back to the psychology of humans and their behaviors. Being in school for Interior Design, I have been told that taking many psychology courses can be very useful. Throughout my career, I will have to deal with a variety of clients and it is crucial that as their interior designer, I will need to learn and observe them and the way in which they live in order to provided them with the best living situation possible. Not only has this introduction to psychology course been helpful in understanding humans and the different ways we function, but psychology courses discussing matters such as color psychology can also be very helpful for my future. There is so much psychology in the filed of design from the psychology associated with designing a home properly for someone who may suffer from depression, to designing a medical facility for patients who struggle with a variety of disorders. Personally, I find color psychology to be very interesting, knowing that something as simple as the color of a space can have a dramatic effect on one's mood. With the knowledge that I have acquired from this psychology course, as well as the information I hope to attain from future psychology courses, I believe that I will be very well rounded and informed in the filed of psychology which will be very beneficial for my career in Interior Design. I hope that I can learn even more about different categories of psychology such as color psychology and much more so that I am fully aware of the impact that human psychology has on our everyday lives.

Psy 1001 and my future

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As a person who is a marketing major, I need to know a thing or two on how to appeal to others. By taking Psy1001, I learned how people tick. I learned internally, what a person is, why we are like and what is the most desirable in situations. This information is perfect for a future in advertising. Classical conditioning is such an important aspect of advertising. People tend to relate certain items, personalities, art, etc with certain products that they want to buy. By learning this I enhance my knowledge on what people think when they see my product, and how to pair it with another stimuli for the best response.
High-ordered conditioning is a very important aspect in having people becoming appealed to your product without seeing the results of what your product will do for them. People want to associate your product with a positive feeling, regardless of the product and what it does. When your product has the power of suggestion, that was because it was marketed correctly.

Believe it or not, I believe that I will be able to apply a lot of my new knowledge to my future career. My goal, as of right now, is to work in the Marketing/Advertising/Sales side of a sports organization. If this goal is accomplished, I believe that my knowledge from this course will be used frequently. Some of the concepts that revolve around sensation and perception could be used in my advertising/marketing campaigns. It is nice to have some knowledge as to what people see or hear in an advertisement and how they are going to respond to it. I could also apply the concepts of classical conditioning to my career. Classical conditioning would allow me to to associate one of my products or teams with a highly enjoyable stimulus. There a lot of other smaller concepts, theories, etc. that can be applied to the field that I am going in to; however, I feel like sensation, perception, and classical conditioning will be of the most importance. Overall, the knowledge gained from the course will help me significantly no matter what route I decide to take in my life.

Psychology 1001 has been a very enlightening class. It has shown me many different fields of psychology that are interesting in their own way. The field that stuck out the most to me was the Biological Psychology section. The brain fascinates me in how it operates and allows all sorts of unconscious and conscious abilities to work. It is interesting that so much of our bodily functions are automatic thanks to our autonomic system that is part of the peripheral nervous system. Then it is interesting how the brain is broken up into separate parts that have been distinguished as lobes because of the abilities that they promote. A question I have about this field, which is probably a big reason why I will remember it, is how did scientists figure out what all the separate parts of the brain did especially when the brain doesn't look like it is separated in all the areas? Did we use human subjects that were unwillingly volunteered or was it all based off animal testing? This question is not a fun idea to think about. Psychology has given me the ability to look at events and little occurrences around us and analyze them to try and understand it in a rational way

A fascinating part of psychology is the idea that safety in numbers is just a myth. I was astounded to learn that it doesn't help to have more people near you in the scene of an accident. Three factors transforming witnesses into oblivious bystanders are the bystander effect, pluralistic ignorance, and diffusion of responsibility. The bystander effect describes the feeling of being frozen in place despite a desire to help. Pluralistic ignorance causes a person to believe that he or she is the only one that sees the situation in a frightening way. So when a person with pluralistic ignorance sees an emergency when nobody else is reacting to it, he or she thinks that there must be nothing amiss. The final factor, diffusion of responsibility, describes the feeling that one is less responsible for another person's misfortune if others are around to share the blame. This is troubling but true, that even I am less willing to help another just because I am less likely to be blamed if I don't. It seems like people should help others regardless of whether they will be blamed if they don't. The fact that this isn't true shows the laziness in human nature.

The Yerkes-Dadson Law

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The Yerkes-Dadson Law is defined in the text book as, "inverted U shaped relation between arousal on the one hand, and mood and performance on the other" (429). What this law is getting at is there are two curves, one for simple tasks, and one for complex tasks. Each curve has a relative maximum point, and it is at that maximum point where output optimized. This means that for simple tasks, a higher arousal leads to a better output, and for a more complex task, less arousal leads to better output. For many people this many not translate to everyday life, but when growing up my coaches always tried to get me in the zone to play sports, and in school my teachers would try to get me in the zone for class. I never knew what that zone was. I had always assumed in sports you should be really pumped up, and in school you were expected to be calm and complacent. Due to my new understanding of Yerkes-Dadson Law, I know that each zone is a little bit different. In school, when engaging in large class participation discussions (simple task) it is ok to be a bit more excited, but when it comes to tests ( complex tasks) it is time to calm down and relax. As for sports, depending on what sport you're playing, and what position or role you have there are different levels of arousal to aim for. A quarterback in football, goalie in hockey or soccer, and the pitcher on the baseball team have complex tasks and need to be more relaxed. Whereas a linebacker, lineman, or running back in football or wing in hockey has the ability and leeway be more excited relative to the previous positions. This is important because I hope to coach sports at some level, whether it be my kids someday, or something more competitive. The Yerkes-Dadson Law is something I hope to remember five or more years from now. Does this have any impact on your life, or can anyone relate to this growing up?

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Mood disorders

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"Over the course of a lifetime, more than 20 percent of us will experience a mood disorder" --psych book

This is the kind of comment I've always a little bit of a hard time understanding. What is meant by mood disorder, and does that infer that those who have them have some sort of minor mental disability--not to think outside of their pessimism?

Who is susceptible to mood disorders and why do they occur to only about 20 percent of us? If so many of us have a chance to be effected by a mood disorder, then it can't be the lack of something crucial in the brain: at least not a chronic shortage. So then what causes a mood disorder?

I've never fully trusted statistics like the one above because the concept of a "mood disorder" a bit vague, and because it's a bit vague I wouldn't even trust someone to be able to discern whether they've really had a mood disorder or not.

Many people are put through all kinds of stress. Different kinds of stress can have different kinds of effects on different people. This stress, whether it be to get good grades in school, how attractive someone wished they were, what type of guy/girl/friend someone wishes they would meet, or something else entirely I forgot to mention, one thing is the same: whatever stresses someone out, they must value. To be stressed out be something one must value something, because if someone didn't care about what they were stressing about, why would they be stressing about it?

I see mood disorders as a byproduct of this concept of values versus conflict with those values. At least, this kind of statistic would have to support mood disorders coming from someone having some kind of dissatisfaction in their life.

Where I'm going with all this is perhaps mood disorders are actually some sort of defense mechanism--that since some sort of conflict is coming between a person and what would satisfy them, they might as well give up? Is it a fear of hopelessness that can cause mood disorders?

The definition of mood disorder, to me, is much to vague.

Perhaps by my peers I am considered a skeptical person. Yet in reality I'm not some party pooper who just won't believe anything he is told. I'm in fact a scientist. Just like most people, I don't like being tricked or fooled into believing false stories. So I defend myself with the power of Scientific Thinking Principles! Armed with the abilities of ruling out rival hypotheses, correlation vs. causation, falsifiability, replicability, extraordinary claims, and occam's razor I will be hard pressed to be fooled.
Knowing these techniques is an extremely helpful in both everyday life as well as in school. Psychology has taught me to ask questions. Perhaps some tricky events can be explained by simpler means. Or maybe some effects are actually from a different cause than I originally thought. However, it is important to keep reminded myself to use them, because it is very easy to completely ignore scientific thinking and fall back into perhaps blind acceptance. I will always keep these scientific thinking principles in mind for years to come.

Throughout all that I have learned so far in psychology, one topic stands out that is very relevant to my family and myself. Both of my parents suffer from anxiety. My father suffers infrequent panic attacks in which he usually feels he can't breathe. My mother on the other hand is an excessive worrier and often experiences panic attacks while driving. I haven't been present during one of my dad's panic attacks but I have viewed many of my mom's. In the past I thought her fears were just silly and was never very helpful during these situations. After what I have learned in psychology, I am more understanding and sensitive of my parents' anxiety. I know realize that even though my mother's fears may seem completely irrational, she can't help it. And although I haven't seen any of my father's panic attacks, I know that difficulty breathing is common of anxiety sufferers and am better prepared to handle this kind of situation. This class has informed me about anxiety and prepared me for any future panic attacks my parents might have. The textbook has also taught me that genetics can influence anxiety disorders, so it's possible that I might even develop anxiety just like my parents. If that happens, I feel my knowledge as a result of this course has better prepared me for this possibility.

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In our textbook, there is a whole section dedicated to romance and love. There is also a section preceding it that is discussing what starts it all: attraction and beauty.
Biologically, we are all attracted to members of the opposite sex who seem to be healthy and physically able to take care of our offspring. In my biology class, I have come to discover that we are more similar to animals than we may think. We talk about how males (in any species) produce many sperm, are very eager to mate with as many members of the opposite sex as possible to pass on their genes, while females only produce a limited amount of eggs, so are more choosey with who they allow to fertilize that egg. Our psychology book talks about this in humans as well, how males are not very picky and seem to be more sexual than females. Females invest so much into their offspring, it's no wonder they need to be picky. Socially, we are attracted to many different types of people. This is all dependent on our sex, culture, and personality, but more often than not, we end up reverting back to the biological attraction without even thinking about it. Men like women who have a small waist, with larger hips. This may be somewhat of an indicator of fertility in women. Women are attracted to men who are strong, because they are looking for someone who would be a good caretaker of their future family. Across cultures, "beauty" is usually associated with health, social status and acceptance, and being "rare and unattainable". People want to be with someone who would be considered acceptable, and they would want their children to be acceptable and successful as well. Being beautiful would secure a person in having a lifelong mate, and successfully reproducing. It would be almost a guarantee, that you would be "set." As far as beauty goes across cultures, there are certain traits that are viewed as more attractive than others in certain societies. In America, it is attractive for women to be thin and tan. In some other countries, it is attractive for them to be more full-figured, showing that they are able to birth many children. Sometimes, being full-figured is a sign of wealth. In Burma, some tribal women wear many rings to elongate their necks. In their culture, long necks show elegance and social status. In China, women used to bind their feet to make them as small as possible. Here, we may few these traditions as strange or unusual, but it is important to keep in context and remember that they might find it strange that we would starve ourselves from the cornucopia of food available to us, just to be thin. They also might find it strange that we lay out in the sun or in strange bright beds to make our skin darker. Across all cultures, there are a few things in common. One is that average faces tend to be more attractive than "exotic" looking people. This may be because average faces are more symmetrical than others, and might show lack of disease or genetic mutations and would make a person seem suitable to be another's mate. Another thing is that seeking beauty requires some sort of risk, whether it be skin cancer from exposure to sun, weakening of bones in the shoulders, or breaking the bones in your feet. The chase after beauty is a dangerous one, but almost all of us are willing to risk these downfalls for the ultimate prize of being viewed as truly beautiful.

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This page is an archive of entries in the Writing #4 category from April 2012.

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