psyc304 week 1 discussion

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Part 2. Processes in perception. This part of the forum should be 150 words.

After watching the two videos below, discuss the role of higher-level or “cognitive” processes in perception. Then describe a situation in which you initially thought you saw or heard something, but then realized that your initial perception was in error. What was the role of bottom-up and top-down processing in this process of first having an incorrect perception and then realizing what was actually there?

Support your belief and use specific examples. You may refer to your assigned Week 1 readings or draw on scholarly online resources. The latter must be academic in nature (e.g. from the APUS online library) and not from pop culture and/or commercial websites, blogs, opinion sites, etc.

Classmate #1:

Part 1

I am a former AF medical technician, my husband is active duty. We are currently living on JBSA Lackland, in Texas. He is on a remote tour right now, so I am a single mom of three energetic boys. I have put my career of nursing on hold to be a stay at home mom and continue my education. I have an interest in learning about psychology. I have chosen to earn a BA in psychology because I feel it will help me to be a better nurse. To be quite honest I do not have a lot of time for hobbies outside of my children and education, however, I love to exercise and make sure I plan time for that. If I get rare down time I watch movies and listen to music.

One thing that I wonder about perception is how two people can receive the same stimuli, and perceive the information differently. The goals I would like to achieve in this course if finding more about perception interpretation, how various parts of the brain help with understanding stimulus, and passing the course.

Part 2

The cognitive process is receiving information from the senses. Perception is interpretation of the information based on information already known. Based on previous experiences and knowledge we therefore interpret the perception of the stimulus.

A personal experience that I had when I initially thought I heard something, but then realized that my perception was an error was a couple years ago. When my middle son was a baby, he cried all the time during the night. I would start to fall asleep and immediately be woken by him crying. I fell asleep one night and was woken by what I thought was crying. This was not the case, instead it was running water from the faucet. I remember being so confused when I realized it wasn’t crying and couldn’t understand what it was at first. After a few moments, I was able to process the sound and determined that someone turned on the bathroom faucet and left it on. It was running water. I thought it was strange that it took me so long to understand what I was hearing. The role of bottoms up and top down process in this experience was hearing the stimulus at the time I usually heard a different stimulus. I used the information from my past of being woken at this time from cry to determine that the sound I was hearing must in fact be crying and nothing else. The top down process then told the rest of my body to get up the baby is crying. Since my brain was certain based on perception that it was crying nothing else it took me some time to realize what the sound actually was.

Thank you for reading my post this week!

Classmate #2:

Hi Class, nice to “meet” you all. My name is ___and I currently live in the Washington D.C. Metro area with my husband. We are originally from California’s central valley, but we PCSed a couple of years ago when my husband was first stationed at Ft. Myer. In my free time I enjoy hiking, crossfit, reading, and spending time with friends and family. I am taking this course to fulfill a requirement for my Bachelor’s degree in Psychology here at American Military University. After graduation here, I intend to pursue enrollment in a post baccalaureate program for pre-med students and, upon completion of that, I intend to apply to medical school to become a doctor. As of right now, I am incredibly interested in Neurology, but am open to other specialities that present themselves along my path. My goals for this course are to:
1) gain a greater understanding of visual perception that includes a greater knowledge of eye structure and functionality,
2) reinforce the knowledge that I currently have in regards to neurotransmitters and brain functions, and
3) continue to learn about the ways that we as humans utilize all five of our sense to better understand our own environments.

Higher level cognitive functioning influences perception in a variety of ways. Our readings and provided videos from this week demonstrate a variety of phenomena that demonstrate this correlation. Perception is related to the five human senses although it can be noted that vision is one of the most heavily relied upon in normal individuals. With vision and visual perception, higher level cognitive processing is triggered through various brain regions that attempt to make sense of the image’s color, motion, depth, and form. In addition, it has been found that various objects, such as faces and animals, are processed in different regions of the brain than other visual stimuli which represents another connection to higher level cognitive processing.

When I was working as a funeral director this past year, I often had to close the building by myself which involved turning off all of the lights and making sure everything was set for the next day. At the end of one of the hallways in the building is a bench with a portrait of George Washington hung over it. Although I had seen this set up several times before, there was one night where I glanced down the hallway and was frightened because I perceived the portrait as an actual man sitting on the bench! I obviously quickly realized that I had made a perceptual error, but this situation definitely caused my adrenaline to pump. In regards to this, I would argue that my initial and incorrect perception was influenced by bottom-up processing due to the obvious fact that I made my perception quickly and without reference to anything, but the immediate information that was coming into my brain. On the other hand, my eventual realization of my perceptual error and the resulting correct perception was influenced by top-down processing. This type of processing relies heavily on cognition and information that has been previously learned or experienced. In this specific case, I was able to utilize top-down processing due to my prior knowledge of the portrait and bench.

Classmate #3:

Hello professor and classmates,

Part 1

My name is ___ and I am US Army Veteran. I am a full-time police officer in the state of Missouri with not quite 15 years on the job. I am a 47-year-old dad-to-be in the next 5 or so weeks and happily married to my wife Holly. I have a daughter who is 23 years old and a son who is deceased. My hobbies are competitive bodybuilding. I have been competing for over 25 years and decided that this is my final year. I recently tore my rotator cuff (massive tear) on a police call and after surgery, decided that I can’t hang with the young one’s anymore. I decided to go back to school after my son died as I was looking for an answer in how to “fix” myself. I was a psychologist nightmare to say the least. I decided the answers I heard were not good enough so I came back to school and in the process of earning my Bachelor’s in Psychology. I will be graduating in June. I decided that one is never too old to continue their education; especially with a good support team. I have decided to start my doctoral program in forensics as soon as I graduate. It is unfortunately with another school as APU doesn’t offer a forensics PhD.

As a police officer, I use my senses daily. But in human context, I believe we all do in some shape or another. I use it to stay alert, alive, and to be safe. We use our “spider-senses” quite often when dealing with our clientele. Those senses are real. What we perceive when dealing with a volatile situation is 9 out of 10 times correct; or at least it has been within my world. I have been looking forward to taking this class as hopefully it will answer in depth, how some perceptions are benign and the mind doesn’t act upon them where dangerous situations warrant a different type of response. The three main goals I have for this class is to first, identify how the field of psychology perceives and defines perception, second, rethink how I perceive others, and lastly, learn new ways in how to incorporate perception into both my work and in my studies.

Part 2

The role of higher-level processes in perception are looked at as voluntary or controlled where as a lower-level process would be automatic. The persons preexisting knowledge of something is influenced by a stimulus. An example of a higher process could be a person identifying a flower through visual stimulus. If the observer perceives the flower to be a sunflower, then the observer’s prior knowledge is heightened and affected the persons perception of the flower. “A number of related cognitive functions, such as visual learning and longer-term memory, also depend upon an accurate percept of objects and their location within the visual environment”. (Postans, Mark, 2015).

My example from being in error was on a barricaded suicidal subject call. The proverbial “to make a long story short”, a chief of police from a certain city, called for back-up. I was in close proximity to where he was at. After making contact with the chief, it was determined to make an entry into a residence. The subject was known to be suicidal and according to the chief, had ran inside after being chased by other police officers. The chief believed there might be a second party inside the residence as well, being held against their will. There were multiple legality issues with “fresh pursuit” but that is for another story. The chief went in and told me to cover him. I hesitantly followed him and we made entry. The chief announced for the man to come out from the back room. I heard what I thought was the sound of a round being loaded into a gun (like a shotgun). At this point, the chief told us we needed to make entry into the room. I told the chief we needed to back away and get a negotiator but the noises coming from the room kept drawing my attention in. It was decided that we make a fast entry to the room. After kicking the door off its hinges, we found an empty room with an open window. Outside the window were hour old tracks in the snow. Why I chose this example to speak about is from the aspect that a knee-jerk reaction was made by a sound. I was a younger cop then and obviously stupid. I can’t say much for the chief either. I heard a sound that developed into a vision of someone loading a weapon. I instinctively went into a room without regards to safety.

The role of bottom up and top-down processing happened when the sound I heard was the stimulus that my brain turned into the sound of a gun being loaded. After entering the room, I realized that the sound was from the wind blowing through the open window, blowing items in the room around. Once again, I want to learn about perception and rethink how I think about other and events.

Minimum 200 words answer to each.

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