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Writing assignment

Joseph Wood

Writing assignment 3

1. Explain action potential. Please be sure to provide enough to show a strong understanding of this very difficult concept.

Action potentials are a membrane potential caused by ions in the neuron entering and leaving like gates. There are three gates and three gate statuses are deactivated, activated and inactivated. Three things can also happen during action potential. Repolarization, that is when the cell is at rest or inactivation. Hyperpolarization where the cell becomes more negative and closes completely. Then Depolarization, which is when the cell is in its open state.

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2. Describe what takes place at the synapse or “bridge’. Be sure to include “neurotransmitters” (with examples) in your answer. By using an internet search, please provide a “link” to a visual aid” that will help explain your answer. Please provide a brief statement that explains your search results.

Information is communicated by chemicals across a small gap which is the synapse. The chemicals are the neurotransmitters. They are what is transported across the synapse that are accepted at a neuron called the receptor. My search results went well I found a very helpful website that was very clear, and I was able to understand what it was saying.

3. List the two major divisions of the nervous system and describe their basic functions. Provide 2 examples of how you used each of these systems today.

The two divisions of the nervous system are the central and peripheral nervous system. The central nervous system is two parts brain and spinal cord. These two things control most of our entire body to movement to having cognitive thought. I used the central nervous system all day long. I woke up this morning and fixed my car and without my spinal cord and bone structure I would not been able to do so. I also used the central nervous system when I fed the cows on the farm this morning when I picked up the hay bale to throw over the fence I used my spinal cord to actual have the back bone to do so. The peripheral nervous system has to do with thought and releasing of endorphins and actual voluntary movement. I used the peripheral nervous system to think through these questions. I also used the peripheral nervous system to play video games all night last night.

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4. Explain the role of the amygdala. Is there a point in development when the amygdala is hyperactive?

The amygdala is a part of our brain that controls fear and the stimuli that releases that causes emotion when we are threatened or in a dangerous situation. It is hyperactive when it has been damaged such as an impact to the head like a concussion in a football game

5. Define and explain the functions of the four major lobes that make up the Cerebral Cortex.

The four lobes of are the temporal, occipital, parietal, and the frontal lobe. The frontal lobe is where most of the higher human motor functions occur critical thinking and emotional control happen here like if it were to be damaged it would seriously impact someone’s ability to solve basic issues. The parietal lobe is the sensory part of our brain that processes what we touch like a hot surface this would process that information or something putting pressure on our body it would be processed here. The temporal lobe is our sensory lobe where the things we hear are processed and this is where we can understand language. The occipital lobe is a visual processing center of the brain what actually comes into contact with our eyes things from depth perception to seeing someone walk past us is all stored here.

6. Define sensation.

An experience born from stimulation of a sensory organ.

7. Explain the difference between absolute and difference thresholds.

These thresholds where first defined by Ernst Weber. Absolute is defined as minimum intensity one can detect in a stimulus test. Difference threshold is defined as the difference in two stimuli in a stimulus test that a person can hear.

8. Explain in your own words thoroughly the process of transduction and why it is necessary (you need to consult and cite a source other than the textbook—- do not use Wikipedia!)

Binding is the beginning of transduction a ligand will attach to a cell and change shape to be able to attach to other molecules. This causes signals to fire in the cells which marks the target for the transduction.

“Signal Relay Pathways.” Khan Academy, Khan Academy,

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9. Define Perception.

Information from our surroundings that are picked up by our sensory organs and receive sensory inputs and relay the information to our brains.

10. Critical Thinking Essay

Dan talks about a table that appears longer than another one but when he shows they are the same it shocked me. I was kind of amazed by this because my rain jumped straight to the conclusion of that table on the left is longer. I was wrong as much as I love to question everything I did not question a table that looked obviously longer than the other. This fits in perfectly with the question where we defined perception my mind perceived the tables to be two different lengths when in reality they were both the same. This also goes along with the question where we defined the lobes of the brain this is a trick on our occipital lobe to make us perceive something that is not true.

Dan goes on to show a rubix cube and ask the crowd what color the top center block is versus what the side middle block is. The crowd immediately answered brown and yellow which is exactly what I personally would have answered. Dan then tells the crowd that they are both yellow. At the point in the video where he took the cube away and I see they were both the same the whole time I probably rewinded this video 100 times to see if I can see it in a different light almost like I looked at the black and gold dress the same amount of times to try and see if I could see a different color. Dan also says something that hit home with me if we have such great vision and that can be tricked imagine in decision making processes what could happen in our brain. We do not have a specific lobe dedicated to financial decisions was the example he used and if we can fail at vision it is scary how much we could mess up something like finances.

So, the next example of our brain not processing information or an illusion to trick our brain was organ donations in countries in the example the countries on the right have extremely high numbers of people that want to donate their organs. I am an organ donor and I did check a box similar to the one used in this example check if you want to donate versus the one that says check if you don’t want to donate. To be honest if it said that I probably would have skipped it because it was longer, and I don’t want to stay in the dmv very long anyway. So, I would have been one of the people tricked by this illusion and all of the things that Dan in this video has brought up links directly back to all the questions before with sensory perception to the lobes of our brain and how it is processing all of this information. I agree with him when he ask why this is a hard question being a donor is because it is a hard question a complex one something in my brain did not want me to donate but I believe our brain is wired for survival and we will preserve our body at all costs and this makes the donate or not question very hard for most people.

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So, in conclusion our brain can be tricked into anything based on wording we don’t think things through wording and basic illusion tricks break our brain in a way. The video and the questions we answered go along with each other hand in hand I could not imagine the video being as interesting without knowing and understanding the questions asked. I really enjoyed the video I have watched in multiple times and even listened to it while writing this essay and to know that my brain can be tricked so easy I will have to watch out in the future for that.

Works Cited

Britannica, The Editors of Encyclopaedia. “Sensation.” Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 27 Jan. 2011,

McLeod, Saul. “Saul McLeod.” Simply Psychology, Simply Psychology, 1 Jan. 1970,

“Neuroscience For Kids.” Neuroscience For Kids – Brain vs. Computer,

“Signal Relay Pathways.” Khan Academy, Khan Academy,

“Neuron Action Potentials: The Creation of a Brain Signal.” Khan Academy, Khan Academy,

Frontal Lobe – The Brain Made Simple,

Sensory Adaptation,

“Lobes of the Brain.” Queensland Brain Institute, 17 July 2018,

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