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General Psychology, Dr. Beck Chapter 1-3 Essay

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Psychological Science
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the study of behavior, the brain, and mental processes
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How old is the academic discipline of psychological science?
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barely over 130 years old
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In the painting The School of Athens by Raphael why is Plato shown pointing to the sky?
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This represents the ideal of his school that knowledge could be gained in a rational manner by thinking logically about events as well as contemplating the heavens and spiritual ideals.
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In the painting The School of Athens by Raphael why is Aristotle shown with his palm to the ground?
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This represents his value that knowledge is gained through the empirical method and that he has to see something work in order to believe it.
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Which school of thought was more influential in Ancient Athens?
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Plato
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Which school of thought was more influential for psychological science?
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Aristotle
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Wilhelm Wundt
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In Leipzig, Germany at the University of Leipzig in 1879, this philosopher stepped out to formally establish the field of psychological science. He claimed that the first psychology lecture he ever heard was his own.
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Wundt’s mission
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Wundt’s mission was to precisely measure mental processes, such things as consciousness and reaction time.
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What was the name of the psychological science’s first textbook published by Wundt?
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Principles of Physiological Psychology
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What was Wundt’s theory about souls?
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the issue of whether or not humans had a soul was irrelevant to psychological science as this soul was unobservable
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Introspection
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individuals methodically monitor their reactions to particular stimuli and then report them in detail and through this technique he sought to understand individual feelings, emotions, motivations, and cognitive processes.
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Edward B. Titchener
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took Wundt’s system to America and began teaching it at Cornell University
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Charles Darwin
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began his five-year voyage to the Galapagos Islands in 1831, and he published his landmark book On the Origin of Species in 1859. The idea that we are not static species, but that we evolve based on what helps us survive was to influence scientists and philosophers for the next 150 years.
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William James
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The brilliant American psychologist and philosopher and also noted that the mind engaged in a stream of consciousness, that is, it had continually changing thoughts
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William James
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Who said that understanding the mind by trying to understand its structures was like trying to understand a house by studying each individual brick.
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Sigmund Freud
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there was an upper level of consciousness of which we are aware, and a deeper, darker level of preconscious and unconscious material originating from childhood conflicts that greatly influences our behavior.
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The goal of therapy in psychoanalysis…
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is to make the unconscious conscious – often through subtle methods such as analysis of dreams, resistance and transference.
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What were the three most famous assessment methods that were geared toward tapping into unconscious material
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Incomplete Sentences Blank, the Thematic Apperception Test, and the Rorschach Inkblot Test.
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Ivan Pavlov
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a the Nobel Prize winner and did studies on what he called psychic secretions
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Ivan Pavlov theory called classical conditioning
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He noted that if you paired a stimulus such as a bell with food, then eventually his dog would respond similarly to the stimulus without the food in a process
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John B. Watson
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a professor at Johns Hopkins University who eventually became president of the American Psychological Association
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Who was Little Albert B?
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Watson did one of psychology’s most famous experiments with this person which demonstrated that this person could be classically conditioned to fear a white rat and that this fear would spread to other similar objects.
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B. F. Skinner
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discovered that when behaviors are followed by positive consequences (reinforcement) they are more likely to be repeated
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In the 1950s what were Americans fascinated with which served as a potential model for how humans think.
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computers
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These two major leaders of the humanistic approach emphasized that individuals had free will to make their lives in any direction despite past environmental influences
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Abraham Maslow and Carl Rogers
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fundamental attribution error
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we over-attribute the causes of behavior to individual variables and overlook environmental variables and an example would be if you behave poorly toward me I am more likely to think that you are a jerk than you are having a bad day.
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Explanation
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is when one goes beyond the data for the processes that might account for it
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Description
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is when one collects data about the behavior and the conditions under which it occurs.
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Prediction
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we assess the likelihood that certain events will occur under certain conditions
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Control
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we attempt to make the behavior happen or not happen
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The scientific method
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is a process for gathering information about the world
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The scientific method list
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theory, hypothesis, manipulating variables, collecting data, analyzing results, and drawing conclusions.
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Theory
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is some idea of how things work
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Hypothesis
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is a specific prediction (after operational definitions) of what should be observed in the world if a theory is correct.
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manipulating variables
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naturalistic observation, self-report, case study, and controlled experiment
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analyzing results
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whether there are differences in the scores of two groups
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To make significant changes in the contents of a theory, research studies must be
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replicated
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A classic example of this is studying time and grade point average. As studying increases one’s grade point average increases
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positive correlation
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The classic example of this is college students beer drinking and grade point average. As one’s consumption of beer increases (usually due to more partying) one may see a decrease in grade point average
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negative correlation
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An example of this might be the number of letters in your middle name and grade point average. In this case we will see grade point average all over the place whether one has a few or a lot of letters in one’s last name.
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zero correlation
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correlation coefficient
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is a measure of the strength of the relation between two variables
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Dame Jane Goodall
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One of the more famous examples of naturalistic observation is by her 45-year study of the chimpanzees in Tanzania
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Statistical techniques
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are tools to help the investigators make wise decisions in the face of uncertainty
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self-report methods
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individuals are asked to provide information about themselves and questionnaires or surveys are common examples of this
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case studies
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to intensely examine one person or situation. Often this person or situation is considered unique such that few other examples of this behavior is available
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controlled experiment
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the investigator actively manipulates the variables that are of concern
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The independent variable (IV)
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is the stimulus that is changed and is used to predict the response
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The dependent variable (DV)
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is the response behavior that depends upon the change in the independent variable
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Confounds
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are anything that affects a dependent variable that may unintentionally vary between the different experimental conditions of a study
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Three major ways to control for confounds
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Experimental and Control Groups, Random assignment to groups, and Keep variables constant.
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random assignment
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every research participant has an equal likelihood of being put in each of the experimental conditions.
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experimenter bias
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the researcher/experimenter sees what s/he wants to see in the study to the extent that it influences the accuracy of the scores.
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participant bias
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the research participant tries to guess the hypothesis of the study and then does not perform naturally. Participants may also try to present themselves in an overly favorable light.
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single-blind procedure
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the experimenter does not know what condition the participant is in
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double-blind procedure
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neither the experimenter nor the participant knows what condition the participant is in.
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Who was Phineas Gage?
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crowbar that went through his left left and causes behavioral changes from this accident
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A typical neuron…
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has three main divisions: dendrite, soma (or cell body), and axon
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Soma
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cell body
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dendrites
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receive information across the synapse from an adjacent neuron
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glial cells
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that provide protection and support
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The highlight of the central nervous system is the…
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brain
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The brain seems to have evolved in these sections
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higher brain areas, mid-brain areas, and lower brain areas
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higher brain areas are referred to as..
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mammalian brain
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What does the mammalian brain do?
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It works together to process and create many of our higher functions including thinking, planning, and choosing
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the mid-brain areas that are sometimes referred to as…
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the limbic system
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what does the limbic system do?
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comprehension and expression of emotion
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the lower brain areas that are sometimes referred to as…
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reptilian brain
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lower brain
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is heavily involved with basic life support functions like breathing and heartbeat
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The four specialized areas in the upper region of the brain
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cerebrum, cerebral hemispheres, corpus callosum, and the cortex
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cerebrum
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is the entire upper and outer region of the brain, most of our higher thinking occurs, and controls virtually all our motor movements
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corpus callosum
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bundle of fibers that serves to connect the left and right hemispheres of the brain
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cerebral cortex
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This term comes from the Latin word meaning “bark” as the cortex is the little outer layer on the cerebrum much like the bark of a tree. Even more accurately it is much like a silicone swim cap covering the cerebrum.
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cerebellum
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balance and motor control
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pons
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its role in sleep and dreaming
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medulla oblongata
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is the lower half of the brainstem. It reflects the basic life-supporting functions of many of the lower brain areas in that it is involved with breathing, heart rate, and blood pressure.
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reticular formation
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it is one of the oldest areas of the brain. However, one of the more interesting aspects of the reticular formation is how it functions in attention and arousa
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mid-brain areas…
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are highly involved in emotional behavior and basic motivational urges including sex and aggression
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thalamus
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“the cloud” and relaying sensory information from the midbrain to higher brain areas. It also is involved in consciousness, sleep, and alertness
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hypothalamus
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is involved with hunger, thirst, regulation of body temperature, and hormonal activity (including sex).
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lateral hypothalamus
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is asscoicated with hunger and starter of eating
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ventromedial hypothalamus
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is known as the “stop eating” area.
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polydipsia
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people with excessive thirst
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damage to this is evident when it interferes with the hormonal activity or sexual functioning
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hypothalamus
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amygdala
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processing of strong emotions, including fear and terror
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hippocampus
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or “little sea horse” and forms new memories
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Clive Wearing
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suffered damage to his amygdala and hippocampus as the result of encephalitis. Because of this, his memory lasts for approximately 7 seconds