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Sensation & Perception
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  1. Sensation & Perception Lecture 6 2/09/04

  2. Scent of a Woman

  3. Does smell really signify attractiveness?

  4. From Scentsational Sex: The Secret to Using Aroma for Arousal, 1998 “PPL are powerfully influenced no by manly, sweet, or earthy colognes, but by odd mixtures of everyday odors- pumpkin pie and lavender for men, or licorice candy mixed with cucumber for women”

  5. Sniffing out the truth Love-Scent.com -                    Lovescent is greatly supported because of the message boards/discussion groups, money back guarantee and testimonials. The chatting forum gives you a real account on which pheromones products to buy and how to mix pheromones to get the results you want. If you think you have too many choices of androstenone concentrate products, just go to the message boards to see how to mix pheromones or see which of the human pheromones are best for you.  For the record Alter Ego is one of the best pheromone products of all human pheromones / pheromones on the internet.     

  6. How does physical energy become a psychological experience? • Sensation • Sensory receptors in eyes, ears, nose absorb raw, physical energy • Transduction • Raw energy converted to neural signals to be sent to brain • Perception • Signals selected, organized & interpreted

  7. Example- Vision Sunset Sensory receptors in eyes Neural impulses (Chemical rxn of light sensitive cells) Brain (occipital lobe)

  8. Importance of Smell • Past: used sweat, brain, urine, odor to diagnose illness • Today: Aromatherapy (inhalation of odors) to ward off illness • Dogs have 200 million olfactory receptors, we have only 10 million • Dogs mark territory, signal danger, establish dominance, attract mates, track down animals, criminals, drugs, disease… • Can our behavior influenced by odor?

  9. How our nose knows • Breathe through nose and mouth to inhale airborne oderant molecules • Molecules dissolved and trapped by olfactory receptors • Like lock & key, AP activated in olfactory bulb • Info DIRECTLY distributed throughout cortex & limbic system • What do I smell, how do I feel about that smell, have I smelled that before & Awareness

  10. Olfactory System

  11. Individuals differ in smelling sensitivity • We can distinguish among 10,000 different odor molecules • Primary odors are vinegar, rose, mint, rotten egg, mothballs, dry-cleaning fluid, musk • Women > men in ID-ing different smells • Some are anosmic (Ben Cohen)

  12. Age • Nursing infants (2wks) prefer their own mother’s body odor to others. • Olfactory sensitivity peaks in middle age and declines in 70’s + 80’s • Based on National Geographic scratch n’ sniff recognition test.

  13. How early? • Expose fetal rat pups to lemon scent • Nursing preference • Place-preference task • Mate preference

  14. How sensitive to scent are we? • Sniffing Studies • College students can ID own shirts • Mothers can pick out children’s • Most can ID Men vs. women • Women can ‘sniff’ attractive men

  15. Pheromones • Chemicals secreted by animals of same species to transmit signals • Dogs in heat… • E.g. male Emperor Moth • Chemoreceptors on antennae can detect scent of virgin female > 6 miles away!

  16. 4 categories of behavior affected by Pheromones • Mother-Infant Interaction • Territorial Marking • Reproductive Synchrony • Sexual Attraction

  17. “if you had to smell it all the time” • 49 unmarried women • Chose smell of genetically similar men to fathers • Women who had pheromone added to perfume reported 50% increase in sexual attention from men • Sexual intercourse, kissing, heavy petting, affection, slept closer

  18. Fragrance enhanced performance Yale Chocolate Study, 1991 RETEST Odor No Odor Odor LEARNING No Odor

  19. Fragrance & Arousal • Write description of personality • Exchange with partner • Rate partner • Exchange • Angry vs. Nonangry • “Aggression Machine” • Jungle gardenia vs. no scent

  20. Fragrance enhances aggression

  21. Organization and interpretation of visual information

  22. How well do our senses sense? • Experience is subjective • The same visual input can result in radically different perceptions • Psychophysics • Relationship between physical stimulation AND subjective sensations • Signal Detection Theory • Detection based on signal AND response criterion

  23. Perceptual Set • Center figure depends on the order in which one looks at the figures: • If scanned from the left, man’s face • If scanned from the right, a woman’s figure

  24. Perceptual Set: Letter B or Number 13?

  25. Gestalt Principles Applied • Figure & Ground • Dividing visual displays into the THING being looked at and the BACKGROUND against which it stands • THING has substance, stands in front of ground • Fundamental Attribution Error • Discounting the situation, attributing behavior to dispositions • Why did she litter? And you?

  26. Gestalt Laws of Grouping • We tend to group collections of shapes, sizes, colors, and other features into perceptual wholes

  27. Proximity • Seeing 3 pair of lines in A • Similarity • Seeing columns of orange and red dots in B • Continuity • Seeing lines that connect 1 to 2 and 3 to 4 in C • Closure • Seeing a horse in D

  28. Stereotypes • Generalizations about groups with identical characteristics • We tend to see members of stereotyped groups as more similar to stereotype than they actually are • Cliques, sports teams, majors, Greek life • Read description of b-ball player…

  29. White men can’t jump, 1997

  30. Closure • The Zeingarnik Effect • Tendency to remember an uncompleted task rather than a completed one • Unfinished business creates “psychic tension” • Tension motivates us to seek closure by completing the task

  31. Highly adept, yet often fooled

  32. S.B. • Blind until 52 • Corneal Transplant performed, sight restored • Looked out hospital window • Small objects below • Climbed out on 4th floor ledge to check them out by lowering himself with hands! • No depth perception

  33. The Visual Cliff Eleanor Gibson & Richard Walk, 1960 • Visual illusion of a cliff • At which point in dvlptl process can humans perceive depth • Nativist vs. empiricist perspective

  34. Procedure • 36 infants 6-14 months • Placed on ‘shallow side’ • Mothers called from deep side • *also chicks, turtles, rats, lambs, kids, pigs & kittens

  35. Results • ALL p’s crawled when called from shallow side • ONLY 3 crept across “cliff” • Animal abilities varied by when skill was needed for survival • Chicks less than 24hrs made no mistakes • Rats showed no preference

  36. Binocular Cues to Depth

  37. The Müller-Lyer Illusion • Perceived length of line altered by position of other lines enclosing it

  38. The Ponzo Illusion • Illusion in which the perceived line length is affected by linear perspective cues. • Side lines seem to converge • Top line seems farther away • But the retinal images of the red lines are equal.