Chapter 4 Sensation / Perception

Have you ever noticed how the same experience can be different in different situations? Read chapter 4 Sensation and Perception in your text book to understand how the processes of sensation and perception can be influenced by the environment in which we experience the stimulus. Briefly describe a situation in which you believe that your sensation and/or perception was altered by your environment. What sensory mode was changed and in what way? How would your sensation or perception of this same experience in another setting be different? Use one of the sensation or perceptual concepts discussed in the textbook in chapter 4 that is likely an explanation for your experience. Make sure you fully define that sensory/perceptual experience, cite your source and explain why your example fits into that definition. For your example be sure to choose one of the sensory or perceptual concepts (thresholds, attention, illusory conjunctions, principles of perceptual organization) discussed in the text. You MAY NOT use anything due to pure physiological changes discussed in the “sensory adaptation” section on page 131 of the text book which is the example used in the below sample paper.

Formatting instructions

  • Turn in your paper through the Canvas website for your Psychology 1000 course
  • Submit only Word documents or PDF files! Other formats will not be able to be opened
  • The following items can cause point deductions:
    • Papers will be checked for plagiarism, which is a serious form of cheating
    • Manuscript should be 1.0 – 1.5 page in length, nothing shorter or longer
    • Text must be double spaced with one inch margins
    • Typed in 12 point “Times New Roman” font
    • APA format of your textbook in the text of the paper
    • APA format reference section of book
    • Put your name on your paper (yes, this is still required even though you are posting online)

Additional Information and Hints For Your Paper

  • Be creative with your example; do not just adapt one presented in the book or from the example below.
  • You receive credit in the grading rubric for following simple formatting instructions, and for writing clearly and correctly. These are all good professional skills!
  • For your personal experience, do more than tell your story: Show explicitly how you are applying the information to your own experience.
  • Look over the grading rubric to see how your paper will be evaluated before you write.
  • Use correct APA format to reference your textbook when citing information or concepts from the textbook. Since this writing assignment is not a full research report, it does not require all aspects of an APA formatted paper, such as a title page, abstract, table of contents, introduction, materials and methods, results or discussion sections.
  • What it will require is correct font, font size, spacing of text, correct margins, in text citation of your textbook and an APA formatted reference section including the text.

For more specific dos and don’ts of paper writing go to Read Me: Paper Writing Dos and Don’ts

Example paper:

When I was in fifth grade, I broke my left leg and it had to be in a cast for six weeks. Obviously, this was quite uncomfortable. Everything was different in my cast. When my leg would bump into a chair or the wall it would make a loud thunking sound. My other leg would rub against the cast and feel agitated and I could even feel my leg hairs itching inside the cast. The worst was that my left side felt so much heavier than my right side. After the first few days I stopped noticing these things (especially the thunking sound). After the 6 weeks was up and my cast was off my leg felt strange again. I could feel a light breeze go across my left leg, the cast leg, but not my right leg. I noticed that it no longer made a sound and the itching was completing gone. And the best of all, I felt light as a feather. But then again, after a few days, I didn’t notice anything different. My left leg felt just like my right leg. My experience completely changed from when I was in the cast and changed again when I was back out of it. Each time it just took me a little bit of time to adjust to the new sensations and believe that it was completely normal. In the cast I stopped feeling like I even had a cast on, while out of the cast I didn’t pay attention to my leg (just like I had always never paid attention to my leg).

In terms of my senses, I began to adapt to those sensations just as described in the sensory adaption theory. This theory states that your reaction to a stimulation will decrease the more you are exposed to that stimulation. Essentially you adapt to the new normal (Schacter, Gilbert, Nock, & Wegner, 2017). So, when the cast went on, I needed to adapt to those new sensations; the rubbing, the itching, the thunking and when the cast came off, I had to adapt again.

The next time I have to have a cast on (which I hope is never) I’ll make sure I pay attention to the different sensory reactions that so when it comes off, I will appreciate my free leg (or arm) even more. Thank goodness for sensory adaption because without it, I’m sure the six weeks in the cast would have felt much longer.

(Put Reference page on separate page. Make sure your formatting is correct.)


Insert Textbook reference here