Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Subliminal Persuasion

I believe that the idea of subliminal advertising is believed most likely do to the fact that it appears to the popular belief of psychology.  Many, including myslef, have considered the possibility that we make decisions based on unconcious forces.  In addition, many people blame unexplained actions on unconcious forces.  Subliminal messaging causes these unconcious forces anf effect how they contribute to decision making.  Also, if a person makes a decision with no answer, it is popular to believe there exists a reason for this such as subliminal advertisement. 

I beleive the "witch trial" factor is the weakest.  Although it does make sense that advertisers who use sublimial messages would keep it secret, it makes more sense that if it doesn't exist, there is no proof.  This factor adds nothing other than the fact that neither side of the argument is correct

I never believed in subliminal advertising, because too many confounding variables exist to have commercials to effectively use them.  Pratkanis did not influence my opinion, because many of his points were common sense and I already did not believe in subliminal advertisement.  I do however believe that subliminal messages cn be used over time to generally change public opinion.  This can be witnessed in any country including the USA. 

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Sensation and Perception

Sensation is the reception of stimuli and feeling from the world around an organism and perception is the translation of sensation and how the brain reads it.  Sensation is the use of sensory organs.  Perception is the brain's interpretation of signals from sensory organs.  Students can easily confuse this, because they are very similar.  To help confused students I would say that sensation happens before perception, and perception is how sensation is transcribed into thought.  I will use a car crashing into a tree as an example.  A person who does need see the car crash hears the screeching brakes and the bang.  This is sensation.  Their hears received sound and sent the message to the brain.  However, they perceive the car crashing.  Their brain deciphered the sensation and used knowledge to tell the person that a car crashed.  There could have been a radio making the sounds and the perception was false.  That is another way to tell the difference.  Although sensation can also represent a falsity if sensory organs are not functioning correctly.  They use top-down processing to assume that the driver accidentally hit the tree and that something went wrong.  They use bottom-up processing to see that the car's front end is smashed and the car is smoking after they look.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013


I believe that many people form their own form of phrenology.  I use to think that certain parts of the brain handle certain thoughts.  Now I know that the parts have different functions but work together to form thought.  I was also fascinated by the ideas of bumps increasing certain parts.  Can people not be gifted in parts of the inner brain?  Does size matter.  There exists a slight correlation in size of brain and intelligence, but there is outliers.  I can see why people would think that phrenology is real.  There was obviously an expectancy bias and any evidence to the contrary could easily be worked around by redefining brain parts. The study of the belief of phrenology could be its own psychological research.  While looking at the old models of the phrenologic brain I would like to point out that not all different functions were listed.  In addition, some were way to specific and biased to time and place of the creators.  Do those who believe in multiple gods not have the part of the brain for believing in one god.  In addition, I have to assume that the creators of the models knew they were guessing.  It must involved a little bit of cognitive ignorance.  After all, there is no reason to believe that bakery and accounting math need different parts of the brain exclusively.  Biologically, this theory is flawed, because parts of the brain would not have been created at a certain time but be the result of a past environment.  Also, how could psycho-dynamic forces exist in a cookie cutter brain.