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Place Theory
In hearing, the theory that links the pitch we hear with the place where the cochlea’s membrane is stimulated.
Psychophysics
The study of relationships between the physical characteristics of stimuli, such as their intensity, and our psychological experience of them.
Pupil
The adjustable opening in the center of the eye through which light enters.
Retina
The light- sensitive inner surface of the eye, containing the receptor rods and cones plus layers of neurons that being the processing of visual information.
Rods
Sees black and white.
Selective Attention
The focusing of conscious awareness on a particular stimulus.
Sensation
The process by which our sensory receptors and nervous system receive and represent stimulus energies from our environment.
Sensorineural Hearing Loss
Hearing loss caused by damage to the cochlea’s receptor cells or to the auditory nerves; also called nerve deafness.
Sensory Adaptation
Diminished sensitivity as a consequence of constant stimulation.
Sensory Interaction
The principle that one sense may influence another, as when the smell of food influences its taste.
Signal Detection Theory
Predicts how and when we detect the presence of a faint stimulus (“signal”) amid background stimulation (“noise”). Assumes that there is no single absolute threshold and that detection depends partly
Subliminal
Below one’s absolute threshold for conscious awareness.
Top-down Processing
Information processing guided by higher-level mental processes, as when we construct perceptions drawing on our experience and expectations.
Transduction
Conversion of one form of energy into another. In sensation, the transforming of stimulus energies into neural impulses.
Vestibular Sense
The sense of body movement and position, including the sense of balance.