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Discuss the use of technology in investigating cognitive processes.
Introduction State what you are doing in the essay The following essay will attempt to offer a balanced review of the use of technology in investigating cognitive processes.
State the different types of brain imaging technologies PET: Computerised Axial Tomography Each method has its own advantages and disadvantages and are appropriate in varying situations Explain why Brain imaging technologies are used at the CLA Brain imaging technologies are methods used in psychology to examine the human brain.
Brain imaging technologies are quite useful in neuropsychology As it provides an opportunity to study the active brain Allows researchers to see where specific brain processes take place Predominantly used to define brain differences in groups while they perform cognitive tasks Enables researchers to study localisation of function in a living human brain State the cognitive processes being discussed The cognitive processes being discussed in this essay are: Body Brain Imaging Technology 1: MRI Scans Introduce the cognitive process of memory The first brain imaging technology, MRI scans, will be firstly investigated with the cognitive process of memory.
Describe the MRI brain imaging technology This technique uses magnetic fields and radio waves to produce 3D computer-generated images. MRI scans involve people to remove all metal objects and clothing where they lie within an MRI machine.
It can distinguish among different types of soft tissue and allows researchers to see structures within the brain. An example of a study which utilizes MRI scans to investigate the cognitive process of memory is a study conducted by Maguire et al. This was based on the knowledge that London taxi drivers must do a two-year training course where they end up being able to find their way around the city without a map.
MRI scans were used to scan the structure of their hippocampi, which were compared to already existing MRI scans of healthy males who did not drive taxis. Some parts of the hippocampi were smaller in the taxi drivers.
Maguire concluded that there was probably a redistribution of grey matter in the hippocampi of taxi drivers due to the regular use of the spatial memory skills required to remember roads; the neurons are stronger in areas of the brain which are used most.
Connection of study to question By using an MRI, Maguire was able to observe the structures in the brain and find a correlation between the hippocampi biological factor and memory skills cognitive process.
HM suffered epileptic seizures after a head injury at age 9 Doctors performed surgery to stop seizures Tissue from temporal lobe, and hippocampus was removed HM suffered anterograde amnesia He could recall information from early life but could not form new memories HM was studied using an MRI in Findings: The brain scan showed that there was damage to the hippocampus, amygdala, and areas close to the hippocampus Connection of study to question By using MRI scanning technology, researchers were able to investigate the cognitive process of memory and make a correlation between certain brain areas biological factor and memory cognitive process.
MRI scans were used to see the structures of the brain to determine the extent of brain damage The structures would not be able to be clearly seen using other technologies such as EEGs or CTs. Describe PET brain imaging technology PET scans require patients to be injected with a radioactive glucose tracer which shows the areas where glucose is absorbed in the active brain.
More glucose metabolism means more brain activity. PET scans show a coloured visual display of brain activity; where radioactive tracer is absorbed Red indicates areas with the most activity Blue indicates areas with the least activity Supporting Study 3: An example of a study which utilizes PET scans to investigate the cognitive process of language is a study conducted by Tierney et al.
To evaluate, using PET scans, the bilingual language compensation following early childhood brain damage Background: Researchers were curious to know if this might have had something to do with his ability to speak despite the brain damage that should have prevented him from doing so.
Researchers compared MA to 12 control participants, who were fluent in sign language PET scanning technologies were used while the participants produced narrative speech or signs Results: MA's right hemisphere was more active than the controls' during the production of both speech and sign language Conclusion: Language function seems to have developed in the right hemisphere instead of the left hemisphere as an adaptation following his early brain damage Connection of study to outcome Tierney utilised PET scans to investigate the cognitive processes of language and observe the areas of the brain biological factor that activated while MA produced language cognitive process.
Conclusion What is the significance of using brain scans? Answer the question In conclusion, brain imaging technologies are very useful in investigating cognitive processes. Useful in different situations. All these methods have their own advantages and disadvantages, primarily involving invasiveness and levels of radioactivity.
However, all of these methods contribute to investigating the relationship between cognitive processes and behaviour.
It is important to note that different brain scans are used depending on the individual, the cause of the problem and or the cognitive process being investigated.Essay: The Cognitive Style of Powerpoint: Pitching Out Corrupts Within In corporate and government bureaucracies, the standard method for making a presentation is to talk about a list of points organized onto slides projected up on the wall.
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