Sleep Walking


psych 1001 blog 4.docx

I feel like one of the aspects of psychology that I will take with me will be the information about the sleep studies, and the sleeping disorders. I found it fascinating learning about the different cycles, and aspects that went into us obtaining a good nights rest. I found it extremely interesting. I learned about the REM cycle, and how the sleep cycle repeats itself every 90 minutes as opposed to happening once a night. I feel that since sleep is such a vital part of not only my life but in the lives of my peers it is a concept that we could all remember.

Another thing that was really interesting was that there are differences in waves as the differences in part of the cycle take place. Starting first with Beta waves then moving to Alpha waves. This then transitions to Theta waves and then we see the k complex and sleep spindles. And the last set of waves we see before we reach REM sleep is the delta waves.

It was also fun to learn about the different sleep disorders, like insomnia, narcolepsy, sleep- walking and night terrors. I found these to be really interesting topics as I didn't know much about them before this unit.

Personality-Criminal Profiling


On television today, one of the most common types of shows is the onslaught of criminal justice shows, where crime scene investigators are able to attribute personality characteristics based off of the crimes people commit. Shows such as Criminal Minds, Law and Order, CSI and many others, all have incredible skills in characterizing the type of person each criminal is, based off of the crime scene they uncover. The truth of the matter is that in reality, even the most experienced investigators have great difficulty making attributes, at better then chance levels. I find it very interesting that although criminal profiling has been scientifically proven to be nothing more than a guess, that the FBI and other crime fighting organizations still train people to become criminal profilers. The reason that this job still remains, may be to aid crime fighters in hostile situations once they finally find the culprit. Knowing as much about the crime and the ones who commit it is still an important piece of the job.

Development- Lawrence Kohlberg's Criticisms Analyzed

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Lawrence Kohlberg's work created a foundation for moral decision making and development. He demonstrated his ideals by using the "Heinz Dilemma" in which he created. The basic premise of the dilemma is that Heinz is the husband of a woman who is dying of a kind of treatable cancer that. There is a drug that can possibly cure his wife's cancer, but the problem is that Heinz can not raise enough money to pay for the extremely expensive cure. The questions is about whether Heinz should steal the drug because he can not raise enough money, or whether he should just let his wife die.

Kohlberg focused on the reasoning behind making a decision as difficult as this. His work was later criticized by many. I found the criticism of the fact that Kohlberg's work has a significantly low correlation with real world applications to be the most interesting and pressing. Correlational studies have shown a score of around 0.3, which basically points out the fact that although Kohlberg's work influenced how people approach moral decision making, it really only works with hypothetical problems, rather than issues we would have to deal with on a daily basis.

Modern advertising uses many different strategies to entice buyers to obtain the product they are trying to sell. As I looked at various commercials i saw forms of comedy to get the buyer to feel positive and happy about the product. I also observed many celebrity endorsements of products to so that buyers would make the connection of a quality product to someone they admire greatly. There were many other strategies that I observed but for me, commercials with comedy and celebrity endorsements were the ones that made me want to buy certain products. In the example below, the commercial not only uses comedy, but also a tactic of clever advertising that makes customers feel like they have to obtain this product unless they want to have non-virtuous outcomes in their lives. Many commercials are successful and humorous, but i felt as though this one was a great example of making the customer feel obligated to buy the product being advertised.

Blog 3- Group D- Prompt 4

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I recently completed an IAT test about ages. This test uses a series of pictures and signal phrases such as "good" or "bad" and assigns each one of these phrases to either a picture of an old person or a young person. Apparently, based on how quickly we press the button corresponding to "good" or "bad" over their corresponding old or young (or visa-versa) determines your specific automatic preference to either young or old. After completing the results I received the response "Your data suggest a strong automatic preference for Young compared to Old." I am not quite sure if i agree with this system of measurement, because I do no necessarily feel more favorable to either old or young people. I feel as though it is possible that my reaction times were possibly based on the culture i am most surrounded by, which is in fact younger people. I think that this test measures more of our culture rather than our preferences to older or younger people.

Blog 4-Group D-Inattentional Blindness

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Throughout this semester in psychology there were many interesting topics that we went over, but the one that will stick with me the most is the concept of Inattentional Blindness. I never had really thought of the fact that I am missing so much of my life, while trying to get through my every day activities. Ever since i started learning about Inattentional Blindness, I have been focusing on, at least a few times a day, slowing down and really taking in everything around me. Once I started doing this I started noticing things that I had been missing, and new things that I would have otherwise missed. This concept doesn't have to just apply to psychology and knowing how people operate, but also in applying it to my own life and trying to really understand and observe my surroundings. I obviously can't spend the whole day with my head in the clouds and trying to observe my surrounding everywhere I go, but I think I will always try to take a few times in the day to slow down and actually experience the world I am living in.

Blog 2- Group D- Prompt 6

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6. How about animal language? What examples of animal communication can you find and how can you think about these examples scientifically? Is this language?

As I researched for examples of animal communication I came across an extremely interesting piece of information about how Meerkats use a series of different noises to communicate. Animal Planet studied the animals and found that "Meerkats purr to show contentment and attachment. They chatter when they're nervous, and they squeal when danger presents itself. Meerkats also use sounds to coordinate their hunting efforts." This information has lead me to believe that, although it is not as intricate and intelligent as the various human languages, Meerkats do have a form of language. The Meerkats have started assigning different noises to mean different things, ranging from predator warnings to creating defense strategies with other Meerkats. The video below is a perfect example of how the Meerkat's ability to communicate helps a group of Meerkats defend their young from a predator:

In conclusions, many animals form primitive versions of "language" to communicate with one another, and gain progress within species.

Depression in College Students

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In this fast-paced world, it's very easy to become overwhelmed by all the social and academic pressures put on a college student, especially a freshman. This study shows that depression is on the rise in college students. It's very important to get enough sleep and eat healthily, especially in one's first year of college when one is still adjusting to the college lifestyle. Good studying techniques can help cope with major deadlines and tests and help prevent depression. It's just a good idea to take care of yourself and if you think you're getting depressed, see a counselor.

Humans in their Natural Environment

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I think naturalistic observation is one of the better research methods to learn about how humans behave in the natural world. When humans are being observed they act differently, so any data taken may be inaccurate or incorrect. Just like the pool players and the observers, where the pool players' skill levels went up or down if they were being observed, people's behaviors drastically change is they're observed. This is why the naturalistic observation research method is so important.

The Bystander Effect and How to Counter It

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One of the most interesting topics for me in PSYCH 1001 was social psychology. I found it fascinating how people act differently in groups and how drastically their actions differ from their personality. I now recognize a lot of the signs of groupthink, group polarization, social loafing, etc, in my past and present. I know I've been subjected to it. Everyone has.

The thing that strikes me most, though, is the Bystander Effect. If someone is hurt or in need of help in a crowd, no one will do anything because they'll think someone else called for help or assisted the person in need. No one will do anything to help.

But there's a simple fix to this: simply be aware of it. If one is aware of the Bystander Effect/diffusion of responsibility, then they can take measures to counteract it and help those in need instead of assuming someone else did. It's just another example of how knowledge can influence how someone's attitude towards a situation changes. Knowledge brings power, after all.

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