Department of Psychology
Midterm Examination 2
Scoring Key and Item Analysis
In the scoring key that follows, correct answers are marked with double pound signs (##).
The average score on the exam, before rescoring, was 29.55, or 59% correct, which was somewhat lower than the historical range of 65-70% correct on exams in my sections of Psych 1.
Following procedures outlined in the Exam Information page, the statistical analysis identified nine (9) bad items: #s 9, 17, 18, 28, 29, 35, 38, 40, and 46. Accordingly, these items were rescored correct for all responses. This procedure raised the class average to 36.00 (SD = 7.07), or 72% correct, which is in line with historical patterns (and Midterm 1 in the present offering). The figure shows the distribution of exam scores for the class, following the rescoring.
The exam scores entered into the ANGEL gradebook reflect this rescoring, and are final.
In what follows, I provide the percentage of the class that got each item correct, as well as the item-to-total correlation (rpb)for each item. I also include commentary on why the right answer is right, and the others wrong.
Choose the best answer to each of the following 50 questions. Questions are drawn from the text and lectures in roughly equal proportions, with the understanding that there is considerable overlap between the two sources. Usually, only one question is drawn from each major section of each chapter of the required readings; again, sometimes this question also draws on material discussed in class. Read the entire exam through before answering any questions: sometimes one question will help you answer another one.
Most questions can be correctly answered in one of two ways: (1) by fact-retrieval, meaning that you remember the answer from your reading of the text or listening to the lecture; or (2) inference, meaning that you can infer the answer from some general principle discussed in the text or lecture. If you cannot determine the correct answer by either of these methods, try to eliminate at least one option as clearly wrong: this maximizes the likelihood that you will get the correct answer by chance. Also, go with your intuitions: if you have actually done the assigned readings and attended the lectures, your "informed guesses" will likely be right more often than they are wrong.
Correct answers are marked with ##.
1. When does mental imagery result in the best facilitation of recall?
a. when the subject can mentally place each of the items in a different spatial location
b. in paired associate learning
c. when the image acts to unify the individual component items ##
d. when the image degrades a chunk into its component parts
45% of the class got this item correct; item-to-total rpb = .26. The more integrated and unifying the strategy is for recalling information, the more successful it will be. When using mental imagery, it is best to link as many components together to have the widest activation, thereby strengthening the connections. Degrading the memory into parts would have the opposite effect. Placing items in space is also helpful, but splitting the locations around is less helpful than unifying them. Chapter 8.
2. Which of the following statements best expresses Ribot’s Law?
a. Memory for faces exceeds memory for words.
b. Memory for words exceeds memory for faces.
c. The older the memory, the less likely it is to be affected by amnesia. ##
d. The only memories that achieve permanent status in the brain are those including some sort of emotional response.
87% correct, rpb= .36. Memories aren’t recordings, and each memory doesn’t have the same vulnerability to recall issues. Ribot hypothesized that there was a time gradient to amnesia, with recent memories being more vulnerable to being lost than older memories. There is some current evidence to support this, but not all people in all cases of amnesia demonstrate this effect. Ribot’s Law doesn’t speak to the content of the memories. Chapter 8.
3. You need to locate a particular file on your computer’s hard drive to complete an assignment. Which of the following situations is most nearly analogous to the concept of retrieval failure?
a. The file is no longer on your computer’s hard drive.
b. You locate the file, but it will not open.
c. You open the file, but the text has been replaced by strange symbols and punctuation marks.
d. The file is somewhere on your computer’s hard drive, but you cannot find it. ##
82%, .54. Retrieval failure speaks to only the process of actually locating and retrieving the file. Answer A cannot be correct, because the file no longer exists to be retrieved. Answer B also is not the best answer because the file is found, even though its contents are not retrieved. Same with answer C, where the file is found, but the contents are strange. Answer D demonstrates a complete failure to retrieve the file entirely, which is what the concept of retrieval failure in memory is. You cannot access the memory at all, even to know that it’s there.
4. We often forget the details of our experiences because of the development of __________.
a. schemas ##
b. semantic associates
c. retrieval paths
d. priming effects
58%, .40. Having schemas, or scripts for the way situations and experiences generally go, relieves us of having to encode all the details of an experience to memory, something that would become difficult and cumbersome considering the vast number of experiences one has. Since we know how something would “generally go,” we may remember a specific experience as having gone that way, even if it hasn’t. Priming effects, retrieval paths and semantic associates are other aspects of memory that help enhance it rather than help us forget. Chapter 8.
5. A patient with anterograde amnesia will __________.
a. have a shorter memory span than will a normal person
b. have serious difficulties in learning and retaining any new information ##
c. suffer a loss of memories for at least five years prior to the cerebral trauma that caused his condition
d. have difficulties remembering names for common objects
94%, .26. People with anterograde amnesia have trouble encoding new information into long-term memory stores. This necessarily affects learning, as learning is essentially the retention of new information. Someone with retrograde amnesia can learn and remember new things, but has difficulty recalling things already stored in memory prior to the amnestic event. Anterograde amnesia doesn’t exert its effects through memory span, just through the storage of new memories. Anything already learned in the past, like names of object, will usually still be accessible. Chapter 8.
6. The basic problem with the filter model of attention was:
a. attention cannot be voluntarily deployed; it can only be captured by a surprising event.
b. preattentive analyses can go beyond the physical properties of the stimulus. ##
c. post-attentive processing is limited to simple analyses.
d. automatic processes dominate controlled processes at late stages of processing.
52%, .44. Attention can definitely be voluntarily deployed, and people can be instructed to pay attention to one ear over the other, one conversation over the other. But some elements of attention go beyond the physical stimulus, as evidenced by people being able to attend to their own names in the unattended channel, and that they can follow a conversation when it switches ears. This shows that there is processing that happens before the filter would have screened it out, and this processing goes beyond the stimulus and can involve semantics (our names have meaning). Lecture 17.
7. Rote rehearsal:
a. maintains items in short-term memory. ##
b. maintains items in long-term memory.
c. is necessary for transfer to long-term memory.
d. is sufficient for transfer to long-term memory.
75%, .45. There are two types of rehearsal that are involved in memory. Rote rehearsal keeps representations alive in short-term, keeping them active. Elaborative rehearsal links that representation to other stored knowledge, encoding that memory in long-term storage. Rote rehearsal is neither necessary nor sufficient for transfer to long-term memory. Lecture 18.
8. The paradox of interference is:
a. the less time an item resides in short-term memory, the longer it will remain in long-term memory.
b. memory is best when the cues processed at the time of retrieval are different than those processed at the time of encoding.
c. interference decreases with the length of the retention interval.
d. the more you know about a topic, the harder it is to retrieve any particular item relevant to that topic. ##
68%, .44. The paradox of memory is that the more you know, the harder retrieval is. Memory is uses a “network,” and as such, when you activate one part of it, you can be activating a whole lot of stored related information as well. The more you know about a topic the more there is to activate, and the less each individual piece stands out, making specific retrieval more difficult. There is no relationship to how long something stays in short-term to how long it stays in long-term, and it is best to have the cues during retrieval be the same as the ones during encoding.
9. A subject who studies a list of fruits falsely recognizes orange as having appeared on the study list. This error is an example of:
a. the influence of elaborative processing on schematic processing.
b. the influence of the retention interval on maintenance rehearsal.
c. the influence of organizational activity on memory reconstruction. ##
d. long-term potentiation of priming.
46%, 18. A bad item (though only just barely). Memory is stored and organized in “networks,” and activating one part can activate related parts as well. If you are memorizing a list of fruits, it is possible that many fruits will be activated in your mind, even ones you are not currently trying to memorize. When subsequently recalling the list, you may conflate what you studied with what also got activated and falsely report what was on the list. A lot of you went for A but elaborative processing and schematic processing both have an effect of memory, but they don't really have an effect on each other. Memory errors of this type are classic consequences of reconstructive processes. Lecture 20.
10. Research subjects examined and memorized a map of a fictitious island, then imagined a black speck zipping from one location on that map to another. Results suggested that __________.
a. the speck rarely “traveled” in a straight line
b. the speck simply “jumped” from one location to another; it did not “travel”
c. the time it took the speck to “travel” was proportional to the distance covered ##
d. some people who were poor visualizers could not make the speck “travel” at all
64%, .62. In an effect that might be surprising to laypeople, when we imagine items and locations and similar concepts, they retain some elements of their relative size as well. We imagine elephants as “bigger” than mice, and give them more detail. When we imagine traveling distances, we account for the time it would take to cover larger distances. When it’s an island, we would move that speck more slowly, given the size of islands in general, and if we were imagining a backyard, the speck would move more quickly in our minds, given the smaller distance. Imagination carries some of the features of the literal object and is not generic. Chapter 9.
11. Which of the following conditions increases the likelihood of automatic or System I thinking?
a. The elements of the problem are readily quantifiable.
b. There is considerable time pressure. ##
c. The judgment or problem in question is highly important.
d. The judgment or problem involves frequencies.
49%, .48. Under time pressure we resort to the more efficient System 1 type of thinking, even though this increases risk of errors. We also use System 1 thinking when the problem involves probabilities, but not when it involves frequencies. It would be nice if we picked our thinking strategies based on the importance of the task, but that doesn’t seem to be one of the factors governing our choice of stragety. If the elements of the problem are definable and easily quantified, it encourages System 2 thinking and makes errors less likely. Chapter 9.
12. Our social and pragmatic experiences contribute to good performance on some versions of the selection task. Moreover, training improves performance on judgment and reasoning tasks. Suppose you examined subjects’ performance on both the letter/number and beverage/age versions of the selection task before and after a course in formal logic. What might you predict with respect to the potential effect of the course on task performance?
a. The course should have no effect on performance on either version of the selection task.
b. The course should improve performance on both versions of the selection task to an approximately equivalent extent.
c. The course should improve performance on the letter/number version of the selection task to a greater extent than it should improve performance on the beverage/age version. ##
d. The course should improve performance on the beverage/age version of the selection task to a greater extent than it should improve performance on the letter/number version.
58%, .21. People perform differently on the letter/number task than then do on the beverage/age task, even though the logic of the tasks are identical to each other. The idea behind why is that we have greater ability to solve social problems than non-social problems, and the beverage/age task triggers those skills whereas the letter/number task does not. If a person receives training in the logic of the task, we’d expect to see improvements in the version of the task that relies mainly on non-social logic skills, but not much improvement on the task involving social situations, since these two tasks are utilizing different cognitive modules. Chapter 9.
13. Which of the following conclusions regarding affective forecasting is probably MOST accurate?
a. People accurately predict not only the intensity of their feelings, but also whether they will feel positively or negatively.
b. People inaccurately predict the intensity of their feelings, but accurately predict whether they will feel positively or negatively. ##
c. People accurately predict the intensity of their feelings, but not whether they will feel positively or negatively.
d. People inaccurately predict not only the intensity of their feelings, but also whether they will feel positively or negatively.
73%, .21. We don’t always know ourselves as well as we need to to be able to make good predictions about our behavior. People are generally pretty accurate in predicting whether they will or will not like something, both currently and in the future, but we discount or exaggerate just how MUCH we will or will not like something. This can be a substantial obstacle to good decision making. Chapter 9.
14. Which of the following statements identifies a limitation of the use of analogy as an aid to problem solving?
a. The use of analogy rarely leads to a problem’s solution.
b. Attempting to find an appropriate analogy often prevents the productive restructuring of a problem.
c. People often have trouble noticing the relevance of an analogous problem to the problem at hand. ##
d. Only true experts in a field can use analogies successfully.
39%, .23. Analogies are used frequently in communication, by both experts and laypeople. They can be useful tools, aiding understanding and problem solving, but there are limitations to their use. The connection between the analogy and the situation at hand can be an abstract one, and people are not always able to see the relationship between the two and the utility of the analogy itself. There is no evidence that expert-generated analogies are more successful or that using an analogy creates a blocking effect for other solutions. Chapter 9.
15. A mental test is considered reliable if __________.
a. it actually measures the characteristic that it was designed to measure
b. it consistently measures whatever it measures ##
c. scores obtained on the test are accurate measures of the characteristics in question
d. an individual’s score on the test remains the same no matter what happens
63%, .31. As we learned earlier in the course, reliability refers to a test measuring a concept with the same accuracy every time it is used. An intelligence test should not rate someone’s IQ as 93 one day and 103 the next. A test that measures the characteristic it is designed to measure would be said to have validity, as opposed to reliability. However, no test will measure someone identically every time it is used, due to the vagaries inherent in behavioral measures. A test score needs to be consistent, but should not be expected to be identical. Chapter 11.
16. Studies of changes in intelligence as a function of aging suggest that __________.
a. both fluid and crystallized intelligence tend to decline with age in adults
b. crystallized intelligence tends to decline with age in adults but fluid intelligence does not
c. fluid intelligence tends to decline with age in adults but crystallized intelligence does not ##
d. neither fluid nor crystallized intelligence declines with age in adults
81%, .33. Fluid intelligence describes the ability to deal with new and unusual problems. Crystallized intelligence describes the acquired knowledge you have, including all your verbal knowledge and cognitive skills. Since this is something that requires time to build, it stands to reason that aging would not help it decline, but instead keep adding to it. Fluid intelligence, however, is something that peaks in youth, and begins its decline due to age, but also to alcohol, drug use, and other impairments. Chapter 11.
17. Which of the following statements best expresses the contribution of motivational and attitudinal factors to intellectual functioning?
a. They contribute little to performance on intellectual tasks.
b. They contribute more to the explanation of group differences in intellectual performance than to the explanation of individual differences in intellectual performance. ##
c. They contribute more to the explanation of individual differences in intellectual performance than to the explanation of group differences in intellectual performance.
d. They contribute in an as-yet undetermined fashion to individual differences in intellectual performance.
27%, .03. A bad item. Performance on any intellectual task is going to be a function of both aptitude and attitude, but with even minimally positive attitudes, individual performance is mostly determined by aptitude. Where attitude seems to play a larger role is in IQ differences between groups, not among individuals. So, in an environment characterized by racial or gender discrimination, nonwhites or girls and women simply may not perform as well as they might otherwise. If you get rid of factors like stereotyping and stereotype threat, these group differences are reduced markedly. Another aspect of "attitude" comes in the form of cultural effects. Many intellectual tasks are highly culture-bound, and cultural differences may make a big difference to test performance. But again, the biggest effect is going to be on group differences, not individual differences. Chapter 11.
18. Which of the following statement best expresses the empirical validity of the concept of emotional intelligence?
a. Little research has attempted to explore the concept thus far.
b. It is a valid concept, but its potential influence may have been exaggerated by the popular media. ##
c. The empirical support for the concept has been weak thus far.
d. It is a valid concept, with wide-ranging implications.
45%, .06. While there is research to support the concept of emotional intelligence and the evidence is adequate that the concept is a valid one, we do not yet have a large enough body of work to make predictions on its implications. It remains to be demonstrated, for example, that emotional intelligence is anything more than a special case of general intelligence (i.e., g applied to social situations). Through the publication of popular press articles and books, however, more has been made of this topic than current research may support. It is best to be conservative with new ideas, but sometimes psychological studies get into the popular media and become exaggerated beyond what the research is actually able to demonstrate. Chapter 11.
19. If we compare the correlation between adopted children’s intelligence scores and those of their biological and adoptive mothers, we find that __________.
a. in both childhood and adolescence, children’s intelligence scores are more highly correlated with those of their biological mothers than with those of their adoptive mothers ##
b. in both childhood and adolescence, children’s intelligence scores are more highly correlated with those of their adoptive mothers than with those of their biological mothers
c. in childhood, children’s intelligence scores are more highly correlated with those of their biological mothers, while in adolescence children’s intelligence scores are more highly correlated with those of their adoptive mothers
d. in childhood, children’s intelligence scores are more highly correlated with those of their biological mothers, while in adolescence, their scores are equally correlated with those of their biological and adoptive mothers
58%, .55. Intelligence is influenced by both genetic inheritance and by environmental factors. One of the most convincing pieces of evidence that intelligence has a genetic contribution is the fact that the intelligence scores of adopted children more closely correlate with that of their biological mother than with that of their adoptive mother. It would appear that biology has a strong influence on this trait. And while intelligence scores can change over development, the score does not switch which mother’s scores it most correlates with. Chapter 11.
20. In English, what does -ing represent?
a. a word
b. a lexeme
c. a morpheme ##
d. a phoneme
84%, .45. Take the word “run.” A lexeme is a list of word forms that come from that root word (runner, running, ran, runs), a morpheme is the smallest element of a word that has meaning (the “ing” in running makes the meaning of that word distinct from the root word “run”), and a phoneme is the smallest element of a word that has sound (“run” has 3 phonemes: r-uh-n). Think of the “m” of morpheme as connecting to “meaning” and the “phone” of phoneme as connecting with sound. Related lexeme to lexicon and you can remember them all distinctly. Chapter 10.
21. Why are complex sentences still relatively easy to understand?
a. They use a different form of syntax than do simple sentences.
b. They still express a single proposition.
c. Function morphemes allow us to identify and relate the various phrases. ##
d. Despite their complexity, they still possess relatively simple morphemes.
63%, .50. Complex sentence do not only still express a single proposition, and are subject to the same syntactic rules as simple sentences, but they tie everything together by using function morphemes (like “and” or “which,” and tense or plurality), keeping everything cohesive. They do possess relatively simple morphemes, but this doesn’t make them easier to understand. Chapter 10.
22. What observation contradicts the idea that imitation is the method by which children acquire language?
a. Children are not capable of imitation at the age they acquire language.
b. Reinforcement, not imitation, appears to be the mechanism by which children acquire language.
c. Children utter sentences that they have never heard spoken by the people in their environment. ##
d. Children who frequently imitate others tend to acquire language more quickly than children who do not imitate.
69%, .55. There are many influences on language acquisition in children. They are capable of imitation early in life, and while they certainly do imitate some elements of language, and can repeat a phrase they hear, this is not the main mechanism by which they acquire and then produce language. This is evidenced by the ability to say sentences they’ve never heard, generating them spontaneously. Reinforcement does not seem to be a formative mechanism, as most of language production is not responded to with reward from others, and much of acquisition is achieved through listening, before complex production begins, leaving little opportunity for reinforcement. Chapter 10.
23. What is demonstrated by studies of deaf children who have hearing parents but who are not taught ASL?
a. Auditory contact with others must occur for language skills to develop properly.
b. The need to communicate and to organize one’s thoughts is a basic property of human minds. ##
c. Without models, children will not exhibit even the basics of language.
d. Without learning ASL, deaf children will not use their hands to gesture, but they will learn to read lips.
60%, .44. The need to communicate one’s thoughts is something inherent in all people. Deaf children of hearing parents have little to no access to language input, but still they come up with a gestural system on their own, grown out of the need to tell others what they're thinking and to be able to get needs met. This is accomplished without input from an outside source, as they have no one to model, and is done without audition at all. Using hands to communicate is a natural channel for deaf people, as it takes advantage of the visual system and needs no auditory system. It is easy to produce and discriminate, which is something not true of lip reading. Even if deaf children are denied use of their hands to communicate, they will not acquire language naturally through observing people’s lips move. Chapter 10.
24. Chimpanzees are capable of __________.
a. some propositional thought ##
b. a fair amount of human phonology
c. the ability to learn complex syntactical rules
d. the ability to refer to things in the past tense
54%, .49. Chimpanzees are similar to humans in many respects, but they are not similar when it comes to throat and mouth anatomy, and the ability to make a range of vocal sounds. Attempts were made to teach them a number of the signs that come from American Sign Language, but without the ability to learn complex syntax and the ability to conceive of the future and the past in communication, language learning was limited. Chimpanzees do seem to be capable of some forms of propositional thought, or the ability to use logic without concrete examples, which is a building block of communication. Chapter 10.
25. English, Japanese, and Korean speakers use different words to describe spatial locations such as “in,” “on,” and “above.” What differences did researchers find with respect to how research subjects from these cultures think about spatial position?
a. Subjects from all three cultures seem to think about spatial position in much the same way. ##
b. Japanese research subjects are the most accurate in their ability to detect alterations in the spatial location of an object.
c. English research subjects are the most accurate in their ability to detect alterations in the spatial location of an object.
d. Korean research subjects are the most accurate in their ability to detect alterations in the spatial location of an object.
81%, .32. Regardless of the language spoken, the concepts of in, on, above, and related directions, are essentially universal and used in similar ways. Research shows that people do not have different sensitivities to where things are in space based in the language they use and how it may or may not distinguish some spatial relationships. The English, Japanese and Korean subjects performed equally in this study. Chapter 10.
26. In the classical proper-set view of categorization, perfect nesting means that:
a. some features are singly necessary and jointly sufficient to define each and every category.
b. members of subordinate categories share features of their superordinate categories. ##
c. there are sharp boundaries between adjacent categories within a level in the hierarchy.
d. all instances are equally good members of a category.
63%, .24. Proper sets have defining features, a vertical hierarchical arrangement, and a homogenous internal structure. In perfect nesting, members of a sub category should share features of their super category, thereby demonstrating the vertical hierarchy. They do not have to be horizontally related, so D cannot be the right answer. Lecture 21.
27. In a famous Supreme Court decision, Justice Potter Stewart wrote that while he was unable to intelligibly define pornography, "I know it when I see it, and the motion picture involved in this case is not that". In making his judgment, Justice Stewart seemed to be relying on the _____ heuristic.
a. representativeness ##
d. anchoring and adjustment
72%, .29. The availability heuristic is a strategy for judging how frequently something happens, or how common it is, based on how easily examples of it come to mind (if you can remember a plane crash, you’ll think planes crash more often than cars). The anchoring and adjustment heuristic influences us to put more weight on an anchor point we’ve been given when making a guess, adjusting from it rather than from a wider field of possible answers. The representativeness heuristic is used when judging whether an individual event or object belongs in a certain category based on how typical of that category it seems to be (how “representative” it is). The simulation heuristic is similar to, and related to, the availability heuristic, but is based in how easy something is to imagine happening, not just how easy it is to remember something happening. Lecture 22.
28. Framing effects violate the principles of normative rationality because:
a. choices should be made according to a principle of optimization.
b. choices should be made according to current resources.
c. choices should be determined by abstract representations of the situation. ##
d. choices are based on utilities, not expected values.
25%, .16. A bad item. Framing effects tell us that people’s judgment will vary according to how the problem is presented or how it is worded. This violates normative rationality because a rational choice is determined by an abstract representation of the problem, which wording shouldn’t affect. Judgment shouldn’t depend on how something is worded if the elements of the problem are consistent. However, since we are subject to framing effects, it violates the principles of normative rationality. Lecture 23.
29. Consider two IQ tests: the UC Berkeley Test of Cognitive Capacity takes 1 hour to administer and score, while the UCLA Test of Cognitive Ability requires only 30 minutes. Both correlate approximately .30 with high-school grade-point average. Based on this information, we can say that:
a. the two tests have the same reliability and validity.
b. the two tests have the same validity, but differ in utility. ##
c. the two tests differ in both reliability and validity.
d. the two tests differ in standardization and norms.
43%, -.08. As we learned earlier in the course, validity is the concept that what is being measured is what is being claimed is being measured, and reliability is the concept that a test will measure something the same way each time it is used. We have no information about the test-retest performance of these two examples, so we cannot say anything about their reliability. We also don’t know which population either of these tests were standardized on, from this description. However, since their scores both correlate similarly with another measure (high school GPA), they can be said to have validity as tests. The tests do differ in length, however, so one would be easier and cheaper to score than the other, giving them different utility. Lecture 24.
30. The sentence "Can you open the door?" illustrates the importance of:
a. transformational grammar.
b. generative grammar.
c. the difference between syntax and semantics.
d. the importance of conversational rules. ##
45%, .33. This sentence reminds us that language is not just a tool for individual thought, but it is a tool for interpersonal communication. How sentences like this are understood shows that the speaker and listener share a common ground with each other, using this to understand what someone means by what they say, even when it goes beyond the words. This sentence is not to be taken literally, as a query into someone’s abilities to open a door, and someone who is cognizant of conversational rules knows this and knows that the question is really a request to open the door. This goes beyond syntax and semantics. Lecture 25.
31. What happens when wires are implanted in the anterior hypothalamus of an animal and then the wires are slightly heated up?
a. The animal will act as if it is too warm even though its body temperature is cool. ##
b. The animal will act as if it were cold even though its body temperature heats up.
c. The animal will lose the ability to react to heat or cold.
d. The animal will have a small seizure.
69%, .38. The hypothalamus is the regulator of the body’s hormonal systems, keeping us in homeostasis with regard to temperature, as well as other functions. If the hypothalamus detects, in this case artificially, that heat has increased, it will trigger the animal to behave as if he is too hot, and to take measures to cool off, even though the actual body temperature has not increased. Chapter 12.
32. What does Aldolph’s (1947) study using rats tell us about the set point for weight, and why?
a. The set point determines the number of calories we consume. The rats in the study varied the volume of food they consumed to maintain a relatively constant calorie intake. ##
b. The set point determines the volume of food we consume. The rats in the study varied their calorie intake to continue consuming a relatively steady volume of food.
c. The set point is quite variable. The rats’ calorie intake changed quite dramatically from day to day.
d. The set point is relatively fixed. The rats’ calorie intake changed very little from day to day.
46%, .55. The important thing is the concept of set point, not Adolph's study in particular. The set point is the weight of a given individual set by the body’s chemistry, and that determines the number of calories we’re prompted to intake. If more exercise is undertaken, the body calls for more fuel, and if less is undertaken, the body calls for less, and this keeps the body weight within a certain range. The rats in this study did not determine this by volume, but rather by the caloric load of the food presented. Chapter 12.
33. Modern-day stressors exact so great a toll in wear and tear on the body because, as compared to stressors in the evolutionary past, they:
a. require greater effort to confront
b. are more chronic and uncontrollable ##
c. are more numerous
d. are more acute and dramatic
42%, .38. As opposed to being acute and dramatic, like a predator attack, our modern stressors are more chronic and ordinary, like traffic jams, financial issues, busy schedules and lack of sleep. These stressors do not require more effort to confront, but since they are chronic, energy must be expended over time. Modern stressors are uncontrollable, as one rarely has a solution for financial trouble or traffic jams that make them go away permanently. In many ways we are just subject to what happens and have to find a way to cope physiologically, using the system that evolved for a different set of stressors. Chapter 12.
34. Select the correct alternative to make this sentence true: Human sexual desire is __________ free of hormonal control.
a. not at all
c. mostly ##
45%, .44. We’d all like to think that our sexuality is fully under our control, but evidence points to it not quite being the case. Hormones play a part in how we behave and how we respond to stimuli. We do, however, construct our sexual lives ourselves, through exposures and practices, with hormones only shaping the general picture, and we can refuse to act sexually at any time. Hormones do not control our behavior -- which is why we don't mate only when our female partners are fertile. Chapter 12.
35. Sexual orientation typically becomes apparent in __________.
b. childhood ##
c. early adolescence
d. late adolescence
30%, -.01. A bad item, but an important point. Sexual attraction (whether homosexual or heterosexual becomes a major issue after puberty, but that doesn't mean that sexual orientation doesn't have correlates in pre-pubertal experience, thought, and behavior. There are conflicting ideas as to when sexuality and sexual orientation originate, whether that is at conception, with the shuffling of genes, or through social interaction, but the first time one’s sexual orientation becomes apparent is in childhood. As early as age 3 or 4, children begin to have feelings of attraction, with first real attractions evident by 10 or so. In adolescence this is strengthened, but it does not only first become apparent there. Chapter 12.
36. Joy and other positive emotions can help us recover from stress. That is, they facilitate a transition from __________ nervous system activity to __________ nervous system activity.
a. sympathetic; parasympathetic ##
b. parasympathetic; sympathetic
c. somatic; parasympathetic
d. sympathetic; somatic
75%, .55. The sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems work synergistically with each other, readying the body for different challenges and facilitating recovery. Sympathetic nervous system activity gets us ready for action, such as fighting or running, and raises the heart rate, raises blood pressure, and suspends digestion. Parasympathetic nervous system activity helps us rest and recover, repairing any damage acquired during the stressful activity, resuming digestion and other tissue repair. Once stressors have occurred, engaging in positive activities which bring positive emotions can help us return to a calmer state, relaxing the body and triggering rest. Chapter 12.
37. The Tomkins facial-feedback hypothesis is consistent with _____ theory of emotion.
a. James and Lange's "self-perception" ##
b. Cannon and Bard's hypothalamic
c. Schachter & Singer's cognitive-evaluation
d. LeDoux's modularity
78%, .29. The James-Lange theory says that it’s a person’s perception of the bodily responses is what is experienced as an emotion, and therefore each emotion, by extension, should have a different body response. The facial-feedback hypothesis says that holding a specific facial expression triggers the emotional state connected to that expression. It proposes that it is musculature signals to the brain that provide feedback that generates the emotional response. So rather than a whole body signal triggering an emotion, the face activity triggers the emotion. Slide 17. Lecture 26.
38. Why is homeostatic regulation insufficient as a mechanism for motivation?
a. Social and cognitive factors do not influence motivated behavior.
b. Some motives, like aggression and mating, do not involve negative feedback. ##
c. Emotions create opponent processes that diminish physiological motives.
d. Some needs are social as well as physiological in character.
33%, .19. Homeostatic regulation is the body’s mechanism for keeping certain physiological states within a tight tolerance. Changes in the environment will trigger internal changes in response to resist those external changes (heat comes on when a room is cold so as to reduce the cold). This is negative feedback, a counteracting force. For this kind of regulation to be sufficient as a mechanism for motivation, motives themselves would have to have a negative feedback system, and while some do (hunger), many do not. Homeostatic regulation could not be the mechanism behind the general concept. Lecture 27.
39. Which of the following would be termed a weak situation?
a. being home alone ##
b. sitting at a traffic light
c. taking a test in class
d. eating at a very fancy restaurant
73%, .34. Situations affect human behavior to different degrees. We are social, and so being with other people can be very influential, but we are also subject to the different things that may just happen to us non-socially, helping guide our reactions. Eating at a restaurant is social, since others are there. Taking a test is social, since the students around you affect how you do. Sitting at a traffic light carries with it expectations of your behavior and so you readily comply. The weakest environment of the 4 would be just being home alone, no social effects and less environmental effect since there are few expectations of what you will have to be doing. Chapter 15.
40. Freud's concept of the id, ego, and superego is best regarded as a theory about three __________.
a. separate personalities inhabiting one body
b. different sets of reaction patterns within each personality ##
c. separate stages in personality development
d. distinct types of unconscious conflict
33%, .15, a bad item, but another important point. The id, the ego and the superego are not all unconscious, so D cannot be correct, nor are they separate personalities. They are components of the self, each being different parts of the same personality. Freud believed that we all had these 3 components reacting to situations and warring with each other, each fighting to be expressed. These are not stages of human development, but are more like mental functions: motivational urges arising from the id; perception of reality arising from the ego; and moral considerations generated by the superego. Chapter 15.
41. As a humanist, George wants to understand Robert’s “construal.” This means that he __________.
a. wants to know what dreams Robert has
b. will try to understand Robert’s interpretation of the world around him ##
c. needs to list the different thoughts that enter Robert’s mind
d. will record Robert’s behaviors at regular intervals
96%, .41. Your construal is the way you make sense of the world around you, how you construct your sense of reality. This is not related to your dreams or behavior, and can be accessed just by asking Robert directly so as to get a sense of what it would be like to “walk in his shoes.” Chapter 15.
42. In comparison with all of the other children in his class, Michael was much better at sitting in front of a tasty treat without eating it. Which of the following can we predict about Michael as he grows up?
a. He will likely lose this ability as he grows older.
b. He will be more self-reliant and perform better under stress as an adult. ##
c. He will likely feel as if he has been cheated out of many things and will become impatient as an adult.
d. He will likely make friends more quickly in social settings.
88%, .23. Being able to control yourself and resist temptations as a child predicts self-control and self-reliance in adulthood. If you learn you can control your behavior early, it can lead to feelings of self-efficacy when faced with other difficulties and stressors. Early learning in this regard is not forgotten, and is predictive of future success. Chapter 15.
43. In a classic study, research subjects did an extremely boring task and were then paid either $1 or $20 to tell someone else that it was interesting. When their actual attitudes toward the task were later measured, __________.
a. consistent with cognitive dissonance theory, subjects paid $20 thought the task was more interesting than did subjects paid $1
b. consistent with cognitive dissonance theory, subjects paid $1 thought the task was more interesting than did subjects paid $20 ##
c. contrary to cognitive dissonance theory, subjects paid $20 thought the task was more interesting than did subjects paid $1
d. contrary to cognitive dissonance theory, subjects paid $1 thought the task was more interesting than did subjects paid $20
54%, .47. Cognitive dissonance is the uncomfortable inconsistency between your actions and your beliefs or feelings. The theory says that you will seek to reduce the discomfort by making them consistent, either by changing your behavior or by changing your feelings/beliefs. In this case, since doing a boring task for little money is inconsistent (why would you do that?), the people paid little money reported that the task was actually interesting, alleviating their discomfort. Those paid more money could always just say that they did the task to get paid, and do not have to feel it was interesting. C cannot be right even though it is the opposite of B because it is not what the referenced study found. Chapter 13.
44. If an infant were to be approached by an unknown person and did not know whether to advance or retreat, what would the infant likely do before making a decision?
a. vocalize, as if sending a signal
b. avert his gaze from what is in front of him
c. glance toward his caretaker’s face ##
d. perform repetitive visual scans of the environment
63%, .5. Babies (and indeed all of us, to a certain extent) use social referencing when in uncertain situations. We look to others to see what they think or what they're going to do so we can decide ourselves what action would be appropriate. A baby’s main attachment figure or caretaker is the source of safety and information and when the baby is faced with uncertainty, she will check to see the reaction of her caretaker. If she sees a fear reaction or a warning, she will react fearfully or avoidantly to the new situation, and if she sees smiles and relaxation, she may feel safe enough to continue exploring. Chapter 13.
45. In a group, various factors influence the probability that an observer will react to an emergency. But regardless of these factors, __________.
a. people will generally respond in spite of any cost to themselves
b. people will respond less when there is any cost to themselves ##
c. people will respond less when there is cost to themselves if the cost is potential bodily harm
d. only women are less likely to respond because of potential bodily harm
54%, .35. Responses in an emergency are very subject to external factors, but even given that, people are inherently self-protective, and do not very often take on costs that aren't outweighed by benefits. If there is a cost to responding in an emergency, the chances of responding go down. If the cost is zero, or if the cost is outweighed by significant benefits (effectively reducing the cost dramatically), then helping behavior is likely to be produced. People do not just act to help AND take on costs when there are no benefits, due to their impulses to keep themselves safe. Chapter 13.
46. Fred and Ethel are both pre-med students participating in a study of anxiety. Fred scored a 5 (out of 10) on an anxiety scale while taking a test in his Shakespeare class, and 8 out of 10 while taking the Medical College Admissions Test. Ethel scored 7 out of 10 while taking the MCAT, and 4 out of 10 while taking a test in her French language class. This pattern of results illustrates:
a. a main effect of persons.
b. a main effect of both the person and the situation. ##
c. a main effect of the situation but not of persons,
d. an interaction between the person and the situation.
24%, -.09, a bad item -- so bad, that I originally thought that the item had simply been miskeyed. There are two people here, Fred and Ethel, and two situations, the MCAT and a humanities class. Set the scores out in a little table, like this:To find the main effect of persons, average across the two situations: for Fred, it's (5+8)/2 = 6.5; for Ethel, it's (7+4)/2 = 5.5. There's a difference -- we don't know whether it's significant, but at least there's a difference. To find the main effect of situations, average across the two persons: for the MCAT, it's (8+7)/2 = 7.5; for the humanities course, it's (5+4)/2 = 4.5; again, we don't know it it's significant, but there's a difference. Note, however, that the difference between the two situations is the same for Fred as it is for Ethel, a difference of 3 points; and the difference between the two persons is the same for the MCAT as it is for the humanities course, 1 point; so there's no person-by-situation interaction. Some of you may have been thrown by the fact that the difference between persons was much smaller than that between situations, leading you to select C rather than B. A plurality of the class went for D, which indicates that at least you knew that "interactions" were theoretically important, but even that choice -- which was clearly wrong, mathematically -- didn't pass the statistical test for a "good" item. Lecture 28.
MCAT Humanities Average Fred 8 5 13/2=6.5 Ethel 7 4 11/2=5.5 Average 15/2=7.5 9/2=4.5
47. Extraversion includes interpersonal warmth and assertiveness, but objective analysis indicates that people who are interpersonally warm are not necessarily highly assertive as well. For this reason, the construct of extraversion lacks:
a. coherence. ##
27%, .33. Lacking coherence means that the components don’t co-occur with frequency, or they lack correlation. Coherence shows that several constructs have a common root. If extraversion is described as having both a warmth component and an assertiveness component, and then research shows that those two components don’t correlate, then the lack of coherence there means that extraversion needs to be redefined so as to include only those traits that do correlate, or occur together. Predictability involves making predictions about future behavior, so D can't be right. Consistency is measured across situations, so C can't be right. Stability measures the trait across time, so B can't be right. Lecture 29.
48. People who "put on a happy face" actually feel happier, or at least less sad, than those who scowl. This illustrates the:
a. effect of the person on the situation.
b. effect of behavior on the person. ##
c. effect of the environment on the person.
d. effect of the environment on behavior.
96%, .10. A person’s chosen behavior can have an effect on the person himself, influencing mood and attitude. Smiling, even if on purpose, can make one feel happier than scowling, even if on purpose, does. This is not an environmental influence, since facial expressions are personally generated. You could think of this as “fake it to make it,” or the idea that when you act as if you feel a certain way, you can sometimes generate those feelings for yourself. Lecture 30.
49. The effect of the presence of other people on behavior:
a. depends on what the other people are doing. ##
b. is independent of the number of other people present.
c. increases conformity at the level of belief.
d. is not subject to deliberate cognitive control.
45%, .25. Humans are inherently social creatures, and as such our behavior is influenced by other humans. However, with such complexity comes malleability, not codification. The effect of the number of people present should change (B can't be right), and the behavior of other people should change the kind of influence (A must be right). The presence of people does not necessarily increase conformity, though it often does, because a person is always able to assert control of themselves if the intend to. Lecture 31.
50. Children who score high on frustration tolerance will often distract themselves during a frustrating task. This illustrates the _____ mode of the person-situation interaction.
c. manipulation ##
52%, .06. Children high on frustration tolerance often use the strategy of distracting themselves with self-invented games, singing, sleeping, anything that will help them deal with the situation. This is an attempt to manipulate the situation they find themselves in through their overt behavior. Another way to affect the environment you find yourself in is to use transformation, but that is about changing the way you think, not changing your overt behavior. Evocation is being prompted to behave in a certain way by some specifics in the situation, and selection is purposefully choosing which situations you’ll be subjected to. Lecture 32.
A provisional answer key will be posted to the course website tomorrow.
The exam will be provisionally scored to identify and eliminate bad items.
The exam will then be rescored with bad items keyed correct for all responses.
Grades will be posted to the course website.
A final, revised, answer key, and analyses of the exam items,
will be posted on the course website after grades are posted.
Requests for rescoring must be received within two (2) days of the posting of grades.
Each request should be accompanied by a paragraph indicating
why the answer given in the key is incorrect or why the answer you chose was better.