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PSYCH206: Cognitive Psychology

Unit 4: Language, Mental Imagery, and Knowledge  

 In the previous units, you have learned about basic cognitive processes such as attention and memory.  These processes represent the building blocks to our more advanced cognitive abilities, which are the focus of much of the research in cognitive psychology.  In this unit, you will learn more about the theories and findings of such complex tasks as mental imagery, language, knowledge, and comprehension.  What makes these tasks complex is that they require a multitude of steps that must be completed in a particular sequence in order for them to occur.  For example, when reading this paragraph, your visual system must accurately pick up the shape of the words while your brain must interpret the words, find meaning for them, and put them together with the previous words in the sentence to create a meaning for the entire sentence.  A similar complex sequencing of events must occur for us to create mental images, access and categorize knowledge, and comprehend spoken language.  In this unit we will examine these different processes as we seek to examine how it is we comprehend, communicate, understand, and imagine.

Unit 4 Time Advisory
This unit will take you approximately 17 hours to complete.

☐    Subunit 4.1: 6 hours

☐    4.1.1: 45 minutes

☐    4.1.2: 45 minutes

☐    4.1.3: 45 minutes

☐    4.1.4: 45 minutes

☐    4.1.5: 45 minutes

☐    4.1.6: 45 minutes

☐    4.1.7: 1.5 hours

☐    Subunit 4.2: 6 hours

☐    4.2.1: 1.5 hours

☐    4.2.2: 1.5 hours

☐    4.2.3: 1.5 hours

☐    4.2.4: 1.5 hours

☐    Subunit 4.3: 5 hours

Unit4 Learning Outcomes
Upon completion of this unit, the student will be able to:

  • Compare and contrast the major theories and empirical findings associated with language, mental imagery, and comprehension.
  • Describe how mental imagery, language, and comprehension are connected to memory.
  • Identify the main areas of the brain associated with the various components/functions of language, knowledge, and comprehension.

4.1 Language: Memory, Comprehension, and Inferencing   - Reading: ZainBook’s Cognitive Psychology: “Language and Thought” and Wikibook’s Cognitive Psychology and Cognitive Neuroscience: "Memory and Language” and “Comprehension” The Saylor Foundation does not yet have materials for this portion of the course. If you are interested in contributing your content to fill this gap or aware of a resource that could be used here, please submit it here.

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  • Lecture: University of Houston: Dr. Richard Kasschau’s Lecture Series Introduction to Cognitive Psychology: “Lecture 14” Link: University of Houston: Dr. Richard Kasschau’s Lecture Series Introduction to Cognitive Psychology: “Lecture 14” (YouTube)
     
    Instructions: This lecture covers subunits 4.1.1–4.1.7 and will provide you with information on a variety of topics about language.  Please note that the content covered in this lecture will overlap with your readings, but it may cover more breadth in some areas and greater depth in others. 
     
    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

4.1.1 Language Defined and the Study of Language   4.1.2 Memory and Language   4.1.3 Acquisition of Language   4.1.4 Disorders and Malfunctions   4.1.5 Memory and Language   4.1.6 Comprehension   4.1.7 Situational Models and Inferencing   - Reading: Wikibook’s Cognitive Psychology and Cognitive Neuroscience: “Situational Models and Inferencing” Link: Wikibook’s Cognitive Psychology and Cognitive Neuroscience: “Situation Models and Inferencing” (PDF)
 
Instructions: Please click on the above link and read the entirety of this chapter.
 
Terms of Use: The article above is released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0 (HTML).  You can find the original Wikibooks version of this article here (HTML).

4.2 Mental Imagery   - Reading: Wikibook’s Cognitive Psychology and Cognitive Neuroscience: “Imagery” Link: Wikibook’s Cognitive Psychology and Cognitive Neuroscience: “Imagery” (PDF)
 
Instructions: Please note that this reading covers subunits 4.2.1–4.2.3.  Please click on the above link and read the entirety of this chapter.
 
Terms of Use: The article above is released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0 (HTML).  You can find the original Wikibooks version of this article here (HTML).

  • Lecture: University of Houston: Dr. Richard Kasschau’s Lecture Series Introduction to Cognitive Psychology: “Lecture 13” and “Lecture 14” Links: University of Houston: Dr. Richard Kasschau’s Lecture Series Introduction to Cognitive Psychology: “Lecture 13” (YouTube) and “Lecture 14” (YouTube)
     
    Instructions: Lecture 13 will cover some more information on memory during the first 9 minutes and 44 seconds of the video and then transition to a variety of topics in the area of imagery which will cover subunits 4.2.1–4.2.4.  Lecture 14 will begin with information on imagery and then segue into an introduction to topics covered in subunit 4.3—the study of cognitive maps and knowledge representation.  Please note that the content covered in these lectures will overlap with your readings, but it may cover more breadth in some areas and greater depth in others. 
     
    Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpages above.

4.2.1 Theory of Propositional Representation   4.2.2 Theory of Spatial Representation   4.2.3 Neuropsychological Approach to Imagery   4.2.4 Imagery and Memory   4.3 Knowledge and Information Processing   - Reading: Wikibook’s Cognitive Psychology and Cognitive Neuroscience: “Knowledge Representations and Hemispheric Specialization” and ZainBook’s Cognitive Psychology: “Memory—Representation of Knowledge” The Saylor Foundation does not yet have materials for this portion of the course. If you are interested in contributing your content to fill this gap or aware of a resource that could be used here, please submit it here.

[Submit Materials](/contribute/)

4.3.1 Knowledge Representations in the Brain   4.3.2 Computational Knowledge Representations   4.3.3 Hemispheric Specialization and Distribution   4.3.4 Representational Knowledge and Memory   4.3.5 Schema Theory   4.3.6 Psychological Reality of Scripts   4.3.7 Mnemonic Techniques and Applications for Studying   - Lecture: University of Houston: Dr. Richard Kasschau’s Lecture Series Introduction to Cognitive Psychology: “Lecture 12” Link: University of Houston: Dr. Richard Kasschau’s Lecture Series Introduction to Cognitive Psychology: “Lecture 12” (YouTube)
 
Instructions: This lecture will cover subunit 4.3.7 and some information regarding false memories (covered in subunit 3.4.5).   
 
Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.