Sensation Perception and Attention (251004)

Learning Outcomes

•    The present unit aims at a recognition of the importance of studying/ understanding basic sensorial, perceptive and attention processes (particularly, in the Cognitive Psychology scientific domain). The student must acquire basic knowledge about the aforementioned processes, but also produce critical and reflexive analysis.
•    It also contemplates carrying out simple experiments, designed to introduce the student to the dynamic of data collecting and its interpretation, founded on solid theoretical grounds.

Study Program

1.    Introduction to Cognitive Psychology
1.1.    Definition of cognitive psychology
1.2.    Philosophical antecedents of cognitive psychology
1.3.    Psychological antecedents of cognitive psychology
1.4.    Emergence of cognitive psychology
2.    Sensation
2.1.    Definition and characteristics
2.2.    Psychophysics and signal detection theory
2.3.    Survey of the senses
2.4.    Vision
3.    Perception
3.1.    Definition and characteristics
3.2.    Perception theories
3.3.    Theories of pattern recognition
3.4.    Reading: perception and understanding of texts
3.5.    Auditory perception
4.    Attention
4.1.    Attention and consciousness: Definitions
4.2.    Pre-conscious processing
4.3.    Automatic and controlled processes in attention
4.4.    Functions of Attention
4.5.    Theories of attention
4.6.    Attention and neuropsychology
4.7.    Attention and perception

Practical Exercises
•    How to cite resources within the social sciences: The APA style
•    Peripheral vision
•    Perceptual Attitudes
•    Detection experiment: Signal detection theory
•    Reaction time
•    Selective attention, automatic vs. controlled attention processes: The Stroop Test



Gleitman, H., Gross, J. & Reisberg, D. (2011). Psicologia [Psychology]. Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian. (Obra original em ingles publicada em 1999)
Sternberg, R. J. & Sternberg, J. (2012). Cognitive Psychology (6th Ed.). Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.
Caldeira, P. Z. & Ferreira, A. (2007). Psicologia cognitiva: Um laboratório simples [Cognitive psychology: a simple laboratory].Climepsi Editores.
Goldstein, E. B. (2013). Sensation and perception (9th ed.).
Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.