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Cognitive Neuroscience

What is meant by “the method of converging operations”? Why is it important for neuropsychology?

Method of converging operations refers to experimental operations used to eliminate alternative hypotheses that explain experimental results. Neuropsychology is the study of the brain in relation to behavior. Therefore, numerous experiments are carried out in order to establish the above relationship (Banich 344). Varied concepts emerge from the experimental results thus experimental operations can be used to identify the concept that rightfully explains the results.

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How are the brain damage and the lesion method used in diagnosing neuropsychological deficits? Which produces more specific structure-function correlations – diffuse, closed-head damage, or a cerebral artery stroke?

Banich indicates that the lesion method involves a correlation between a damaged part of the brain and an inability to carry out specific activities (345). Between diffuse, close-headed damage, and cerebral palsy stroke, cerebral palsy strokes have a more specific structure correlation as the condition is directly associated with damage to the cerebral cortex.

When describing underlying structural deficits responsible for some neuropsychological disorders, what is meant by “the disconnection syndrome”?

Disconnection syndrome refers to the damage of the convergence center where information from different parts of the brain is assimilated or the interruption of motor pathways that supply information to the convergence center. The convergence center hypothesis refers to the existence of a central point where all the brain functions are integrated (Singer 323).

With regard to understanding cognitive function and dysfunction, what are event-related potentials?

Event-related potential refers to the measured response of the brain to either internal or external stimuli. The event-related potential is measured by electroencephalography where a change in brain activity in presence of different stimuli is observed. Using the method, the neuropsychologist can relate ERP results to various cognitive functions.

What is a double dissociation and why is important for understanding structure-function relations in the brain?

Double dissociation refers to the separation of related cognitive processes. Different parts of the brain perform different cognitive functions (Banich 345). Although two mental processes are related, the associated cognitive processes may differ significantly. It’s, therefore, an important basis for establishing structure-function relations. Different cognitive functions can be associated with activity in different parts of the brain.

What is meant by hemispheric specialization? Give examples

The two hemispheres of the brain are highly specialized thus performing different functions. The left hemisphere in related to language acquisition and development. On the other hand, the right hemisphere is associated with spatial skills (Singer 323). For example, individuals with right hemisphere dominance exhibit ability in such fields as poetry.

What is the WADA test and how is it used in neuropsychology

Wada test refers to the use of sodium ammobarbital injected into the either brain hemispheres and inhibits memory and language functions in that particular hemisphere. Wada test is an effective tool in neuropsychology especially in research on the brain lateralization process. It is, also, used to study differences in activity in both hemispheres among different genders.

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Who has the more lateralized brain– men or women? Explain

Men have increased brain lateralization than women. Differences in lateralization are evident in such facets as language processing. Men have an increased use of the left hemisphere which is associated with problem solving (Singer 323). Therefore, men seek practical solutions to various problems.

What is the divided visual field technique? How does it help us understand hemispheric processing differences?

Divided visual field technique is a method used to differences in processing of information between left and right hemispheres. In the technique, words are flashed to the subject from different hemi fields. Words processing is analyzed where words flashed to the left eye are processed in the right hemisphere and words flashed before the right eye are processed in the right hemisphere.

What other animals have demonstrated anatomical asymmetries? Explain

Several animals have shown anatomical asymmetries. The characteristic song from the songbirds has been seen to be controlled from one side of the brain. Also, research has indicated that some rat species have lateralized brain where the right hemisphere controls emotional behavior.

Works Cited

Banich, Marie. Cognitive Neuroscience. Beverly, MA: Wadsworth Publishing, 2011: Print.

Singer, Wolf. The Brain, a Complex Self-organizing System. European Review, 17.2(2009): 321–329. Print.

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