Thursday, April 2, 2020

First Journal Entry Post

Hanna Wilson 
Psychology History and Systems 
Chapter Fourteen
Two Ways of Looking at Vision

I chose to write my journal post on chapter fourteen because it goes into depth on perception and some of the many questions associated with seeing. The chapter starts off with some history on the psychology of perception and then addresses some of the many questions that have been around for centuries about sight and perception. Reading the chapter I found that some of the most important information came from the sections on the two ways of looking at vision. 
One point of view is the neural approach which covers how sensory nerves transmit sensations to the brain and how the brain turns those incoming impulses into vision. These types of physiological based questions were all researched by the nineteenth century psychologists. Through the years of researching psychologists found that the receptors that respond to specific stimuli send their messages separately to the striate or primary area of the visual cortex. This concept starts with the retina where rods are sensitive to low levels of illumination and cones are responsive to different wavelengths of visible light. From here the brain puts it all together using the primary visual cortex which integrates impulses and blends the information from the two eyes. The striate region then sends the information to higher areas of the brain and the information is then seen and recognized by the mind. The principles of the neural approach tell us about the working of visual perception on a micro level. The neural approach fails to recognize the point of view on the experiencing perception. 
The other perspective is the cognitive approach which deals more with the mental processes of perception. The mental processes of visual perception are organized mass effects of neural phenomena expressed by mental laws. Many of the models of perception have to do with higher mental processes and recognizing symbols of the external world. Researchers have been trying to formulate a cognitive theory on how these processes work and what that looks like. What they have concluded is that perception involves a higher level of the brain and a lot of problem solving. Trying to decide if what we are perceiving is real or true requires a lot of energy and mental thinking. This is why the cognitive approach is grounded in mental processes. 
Over the centuries psychologists have come to many conclusions on perception but a great deal still remains unknown. After reading this chapter of Hunt’s book I found the neural and cognitive approaches to perceptions to answer many questions. But after reading I also still question the process of perception and wonder if what I am seeing is actually real or just something interpreted by my mental process. Overall the author gives a good logical explanation of perception. 


  1. Your breakdown of the chapter is great Hanna. I haven't read chapter 14 yet, so your post has given me a sneak peek. The complexity of the physiology of eyesight is one that interests me. It's amazing what our minds and bodies can do, let alone our two eyes! Now that I am aware of the two points of view concerning vision, I can't help but to be grateful that I have efficient perception and higher mental processes that make my everyday tasks possible.

  2. Hey great post Hannah, It just amazes me how even in 2020, psychologist still have many unanswered questions about human perception that are centuries old. Perception is something that has always intrigued me because I sometimes find myself in situations where I ask myself "am I really seeing this?" or even "am I really doing this?". These questions intrigue me because I don't know if my mental process is being interrupted during my neural processing. I also think the perception is more of a cognitive process then a neutral one. I say this because, perception is very different for everyone. Even if it is the same pattern, design, or object different people will perceive it to be different. Sometimes it may be because they are unable to understand the shapes or objects, or they might just see a completely different picture all together. Lastly, I will say that if we are not looking for something and focused on finding something else, then we will almost always miss that object. However we are most likely to find whatever we are focused om finding in the picture. Perception can also be whatever we choose to see.