Learning and Development

Glossary of Psychology of Learning and Development

Paper(2nd)Compiled By: Munawar Syeed
Abduction in conditional reasoning, the generation of an explanation for an event, taken from a theory of how the world works, the plausibility of which depends in large part on the number and the likelihood of the alternative explanations.
Abstract Thinking
Thinking in terms of concepts and general principles, as contrasted with thinking of specific objects or events.
Accentuation Theory
It is one of the varieties of social cognition theories, which suggests that when other people's attitudes differ from our own, we tend to exaggerate the difference between them.
Achievement Motive
The desire to accomplish difficult tasks and overcome obstacles. More specifically, when an individual is not so much concerned with success or failure in a given task but, with attaining a certain standard which he sets for himself.
Achievement Test
A test which as distinguished from aptitude and intelligence tests, measures what has been accomplished as in mathematics, history or French.
The hormone from the pituitary gland which stimulates the adrenal cortex. The full name is adrenocorticotropic hormone.
Action Potential
It is the brief, all-or-nothing change in membrane potential that constitutes a single response in a neuron.
Activation Theory
The theory which emphasizes that emotion is a matter of degree of arousal. According to this view, emotion is not a special state but, a point on a normal continuum.
Actor-Observer Difference
Actor-observer Difference in the study of the attribution process, the tendency for actors to attribute their behavior to the situation and for observers to attribute the actor's behavior to dispositions.
Actualizing the Self
It is an explanation of indi­vidual behavior as being a striving to fulfill, where self-image is a key filter which can either be in harmony with the organism or in opposition.
Adult Attachment Interview
It is a type of interview devised to probe adults memories of their own childhood experiences and relationships with their parents, and from which four basic classifications of parenting styles have defined.
Aerial Perspective
Clearness of details under different atmospheric conditions. Objects with clear details appear nearer than hazy objects. Therefore, aerial perspective is a cue for depth perception.
Aethetics of Place
In environmental Psychology, It is the physical appearance of particular behavioral settings which affect the behavior of those living within them.
In environmental psychology, It is an individual's emotional response to the environment, which is predicted by the naturalness of the place; its upkeep, openness, order; and historical significance.
In environmental psychology, these are the kinds of activities that a place permits or encourages in those living within them.
Inability to recognize objects and their meaning, usually due to damage to the brain.
Difficulty in reading, may follow parietal lobe damage.
In human and animal behaviour, it is the tendency to act in ways that benefit other individuals more than oneself, sometimes even where there is a real cost involved to the giver.
Ambiguous Figure
It is a kind of visual illusion in which a picture can be seen in two different ways, where the percept usually flips between the two al­ternative interpretations.
It is loss of memory syndrome character­ized by intact LTS and preserved procedural memory and which is caused by damage to one of two specific brain regions, the temporal lobes or the dien­cephalon.
Analogical Mapping
In problem solving, It is the use of the solution of another problem as a pattern, by establishing a mapping between the domains from which the problems are drawn - the source (or base) domain the target domain.
Analogical Reasoning
In the study of intelligence, It is a form of problem solving involving. The com­parison of similarities between pairs, often in the form of pictures.
Analysis by Synthesis
It is an extreme form of top ­down processing, most often applied to speech per­ception, in which the listener is thought to make sense of the speech waveform by attempting mentally to produce the same sounds as the speaker.
Anchoring and Adjustment
It is one of three types of heuristic which is based on the idea that people often make estimates of probabilities among other things, by taking an initial value, or anchor, and adjusting it.
A well-developed archetype representing the masculine characteristics in women (lung).
Anterograde Amnesia
The inability to encode and store new information in memory.
Antidiuretic Hormone (ADH)
A hormone that controls the loss of water through the kidneys.
Apprehension, dread, uneasiness. The feeling stems from fear but, it is more a fear of what might happen or what has happened than of an obvious, specific fear-provoking situation. An important term in psychiatry with a variety of meanings .
Anxiety Disorders
Clinical syndromes in which observable and intense anxiety is the principal symptom, the anxiety is not covered up or reduced by other processes as in some of the other psychological disorders.
Literally, "without speech". A disorder involving loss of linguistic meaning, such as loss of ability to understand what is heard or what is read. Motor aphasia is loss of ability to articulate.
Approach-approach Conflict
A situation of indecision in which the individual is confronted with two equally attractive alternatives.
Approach-avoidance Conflict
A situation of indecision involving a single object or event which has both attractive and aversive features. When two or more such objects or events are involved, the situation is called double approach-avoidance.
Aqueous Humour
A jelly-like substance behind the cornea of the eye.
Inherited predisposition to perceive or act in a certain way (Jung).
Arousal-cognition Theory
The view that arousal and a knowledge of the stimulating circumstances are the chief elements in an emotional experience.
Artificial Neural Network
11 is a means of investigating learning in a way that is more 'brain ­like' than traditional, symbolic approaches, and which has many different possible types, each with different learning rules.
Ascending Reticular Activating System (ARAS)
The fibres and nerve cells of the reticular formation; an indirect sensory pathway to the cerebral cortex; involved in control of levels of arousal and the sleep­-waking continuum.
Assimilation-Contrast Theory
It is one of the variety of social cognition theories which suggests that when other people hold attitudes similar to our own we tend to exaggerate the similarity.
Association Cortex
Association Cortex is one of several areas in the frontal region of the brain, occupying the temporal, occipital and parietal lobes which receives information from sensory cortical areas as well as other association areas.
Associative Strength
The strength of an S-R linkage as measured by the frequency with which a stimulus elicits a particular response. Thus, the stimulus word white brings the response black more often than the response green. We can say, therefore, that the white-black connection has greater associative strength than the connection white-green.
Attachment Behaviours
It is a preferential system of approaching and interacting with familiar care giver, also known as proximity-maintaining behaviour, such as crying and clinging, which the infant develops in the first nine months of its life.
Attachment Theory
It is an analytical attempt to explain the various factors that bind people to another in emotional terms; primarily that attachment first established in infancy between the baby and its mother or primary care giver, which is seen as forming the later expectation experienced by the adult in their relationships with others.
Attention Deficit Disorder
A behavioral problem of childhood characterized by a short attention span, hyperactivity, a low tolerance for frustration and impulsivity.
A predisposition to react in a certain way; a readiness to react, a determining tendency. Basic components of attitudes are sometimes said to be a belief, a value and a predisposition to react in a certain manner.
Attitude Accessibility Model
In the evaluation of social attitudes. it is an approach which stresses the evaluative component of attitudes as a learned association between an entity and its evaluation, which is stored in memory.
Attribution of a Disposition
In correspondent inference theory, It is the second of a two-state process, whim observers determine whether a person has a disposition which gives rise to a particular intention
Attribution of Intent
In correspondent inference theory, It is the first of a two-stage process, when observers infer the intention of a person performing a particular behavior.
Attribution Theory
In a psychology of personality, It is an explanation of social behavior by attributing to it the core characteristics of the individual rather than the specifics of the situation they might be in.
Autistic Thinking
High private thinking using symbols that have very personal meanings.
Automatic Nervous System
The relatively independent system, comprising the sympathetic and parasympathetic systems, which regulate the various inner organs of the body, like the heart, stomach and glands.
Autonomic Nervous System
It is a self-governing system within the peripheral nervous system which helps regulate the internal environment of the body receiving information from and sending commands to the heart, intestines and other organs in order to regulate vital bodily functions.
Availability is one of the three types of heuristics, according to which the probability of an event, or of an item having a property, is judged by the ease with which instances can be brought to mind - their availability from memory.
Avoidance-Avoidance Conflict
A situation in which the individual is caught between two unattractive alternatives.
Avoidance Conditioning
An organism's learning to avoid punishment by making an appropriate anticipatory response.
Basal Ganglia
It is a collective name for a set of structures located around the thalamus, also known as the putamen and globus pallidus, that are part of the motor control mechanism of the brain.
Basilar membrane
A membrane at the base of the cochlear canal movements play an important role in stimulating the auditory nerve.
Behaviour Therapy
The use of conditioning procedure in treatment of psychological problems. Both, classical (systematic desensitisation) and operant methods are used
Behavioural Perspective
A current viewpoint in psychology which has its roots in the older school of behaviourism; the emphasis is on the description, control, and understanding of what people and animals do, i.e., their behaviour.
Behaviour Setting
In environmental psychology, it is an aspect of socio-physical environment with which the individual interacts, such as-other people and inanimate objects.
Behavioural Intention
For the explanation of social attitudes, it is the tendency to act towards the entity in a particular way.
Binet-Simon Scale
In intelligence testing. It is a system of 30 tests in a scale of increasing difficulty as a way of measuring the child's scholastic performance in comparison with expected levels of performance of other children of the same age.
Binocular Cues
Cues for depth perception that we get from both eyes working together.
Binocular Disparity
It is the small positional differences in the images formed in the two eyes which arise because they have slightly different viewpoints on the world.
Biomedical Approach
It is a psychological approach to abnormality which emphasizes both qualitative and quantitative differences in order to ascertain what is underlying a particular symptom or deviation of a diagnostic sign.
Information provided to a person about biological events in his or her own body-heart rate, for example. The perception of this information may allow individuals to gain control over biological events in their bodies.
Bipolar Disorder
An affective-disorder in which there are both manic episodes and major depressive episodes.
Biopsychosocial Model
It is a theoretical model applied to the diagnosis of physical and mental-health problems.
Bipolar Depression
It is also known as manic de­pression, a severe form of depression where the sufferer alternates between periods of depression and mania, and during the manic phase, is irritable, overactive and shows extreme recklessness.
In self-descriptions, it is a person' s perceptions of their own body, which may involve either neutral descriptions relating to height, weight, etc., or evaluative judgments of appearance.
Boolean Algebra
Two-valued logic, based on the assumption that any given element is either in or out of a set; the logical basis for the operation of the digital computer (Boole).
Bottom-up Processing
It is a type of information processing which is thought to progress from a simple description of the stimulus (e.g. the image) to a more complex description of the external world (i.e., a perceptual model).
Brain Bisection
Surgical division of the brain longitudinally, between the two hemispheres. This procedure is sometimes used to alleviate epileptic seizures and also to study brain functions, in which case the term split-brain research may be used.
Brain Comparator
A hypothetical mechanism that takes account of eye and head movements in the perception of motion.
A group problem-solving situation in which members contribute any idea which seems to have the slightest bearing on the problem. A central principle is that all evaluations of ideas are withheld until later thus, creating maximum opportunity for novel thoughts to emerge.
Brain Syndromes
Psychological disorders resulting from impairment of brain function; may be acute and reversible or chronic and irreversible.
Including people to modify their attitudes and behaviour in certain directions through various forms of social pressure and perhaps also physical torture.
The intensity aspect of light; the visual dimension represented by the black-white continuum. Also a high level of intelligence, in contrast to dullness.
Broca's Area
A region in the motor area of the cerebral cortex, which plays an important role in the articulation of speech sounds. Named after Broca, who discovered it.
Broca's Aphasia
It is a condition, described by the French surgeon, Paul Broca, where people have slow and stilted speech as a result of a dysfunction in the precentral gyrus responsible for organizing speech output.
It is a persistent aggressive behaviour directed towards a particular victim, particularly children at school, who cannot retaliate effectively.
The Big Five
It is the five major personality dimensions, defined by various theorists, which are now generally applied in research on personality traits. 
California Psychological Inventory
A personality inventory used with normal persons. Emphasis is upon social interaction variables.
It is the strongly pre-determined process of pre-natal growth in the womb which gives clear genetic instructions for the zygote to differentiate into the embryo.
Cannon-Bard Theory
The view that the feeling aspect of emotion and the pattern of emotional behaviour are controlled by the hypothalamus.
Case Grammar
It is a form of semantic grammar which represents the semantic roles of phrases using semantic cases such as agents, objects and instruments.
Case Study
It is a detailed study of one particular example of a phenomenon which involves in-depth analysis of a particular individual's behaviour.
A form of schizophrenia (or a person with schizophrenia) characterized by such symptoms as extreme negativism, physical rigidity, and holding bizarre postures.
A release of tensions by expressing pent ­up emotions and by reliving earlier traumatic events; aspects of psychotherapy often encouraged by the therapist.
Central Nervous System (CNS)
It is one of the two major divisions of the body's nervous system, which is comprised of the brain and the spinal cord.
Central Traits
Personality features which characterize an individual, but do so less completely than do cardinal traits.
Cephalocaudal Development
A gradient of growth, particularly in the embryonic stage, proceeding from head to tail. In a foetus, the head is likely to be more fully developed than the trunk and lower body parts.
It literally means 'little brain' the large and richly connected structure at the back of the brain, located under the cerebrum, that links with other sub cortical structures and with areas of the cerebral cortex to produce finely controlled motor skills ­particularly in quick-reaction sports which require rapid movements.
Cerebral Cortex
The greatly invaginated outer layer of cerebral cells.
Cerebro-Spinal Fluid
It is a plasma filtrate that is secreted from the capillaries of the ventricles of the brain and other blood vessels and circulates around these and other cavities.
Childhood Amnesia
It is a term that refers to the poor memory we have of our lives in our early years.
Child-Directed Speech (CDS)
It is a term, formerly called Motherese, to describe the short, fluent, grammatically correct utterances, with enhanced intonation, by which mothers, other adults and older childrern help toddlers to learn language
Cholecystokinin (CCI)
A hormone that is released into the blood when food reaches the intestine; it may be involved in the cessation of eating.
Choroid Coat
 The middle, pigmented layer of the eyeball. Its primary function is to exclude light.
A device which measures speed of reaction
Ciliary Muscle
Muscle surrounding the lens of the eye, which regulates the curvature of the lens to focus the eye for clear vision.
Classical Conditioning
It is the way in which an infant during its development learns to associate one event with another. The term is derived from procedures first introduced by Pavlov in his experimentation with dogs in which a Conditional Stimulus (a bell) was paired with an Unconditional. Stimulus (salivating) in order to elicit a response (known as the Conditioned Response), in this case that of the dog salivating even when the bell was sounded without food.
Client-Centered therapy
It is also known as person centered or Rogerian therapy, a form of therapy which brings the client's personal needs into action, viewing the client as intrinsically good and offering a sense of unconditional acceptance and regard for them.
Closure, Principle
The principle that when we view fragmentary stimuli forming a nearly complete figure, we tend to ignore the missing parts and, perceive the figure as a whole.
A coiled structure of the inner ear which contains the receptors essential for hearing.
Cock tail Party Phenomenon
It is the ability to attend to a single conversation in a crowded room; an example of stimulus segmentation.
Cognitive Dissonance Theory
A theory of attitude formation and behaviour which indicates that persons try to achieve consistency (consonance) and avoid dissonance, which, when it arises. may be handled by changing one's attitude, rationalizing selective perception, and other means.
Cognitive-Social Approach to Personality
In personality studies, It is an approach to the study of behaviour which emphasizes the individual's expectations and hypotheses about the social world.
Collective Unconscious
According to Jung, a portion of the unconscious which is inherited and found in all members of a given race or species
Colour Blindness
A weakn.ess or defect in sensitivity to hue; for example, in red-green blindness the individual has difficulty in distinguishing red and green from greys of the same brightness.
Colour Circle
It is a simple way of illustrating how perceived hue and saturation depend upon the wavelength and spectral composition of a light and which can be used to predict the perceived colour of mixtures of monochromatic light.
Colour Constancy
It is the perceptual phenomenon by which the perceived colour of a surface remains constant despite variations in the spectral composition of the light that it reflects.
Comparative Method
It is an approach applied in sociobiology, where the distribution of a-particular bodily feature among a living species is studied in order to deduce at what point in evolution that feature was first seen.
Competence is that aspect of a theory which is the abstract knowledge which helps describe some phenomena, as opposed to the performance theory. In language research a competence theory tries to ,capture generalizations about what language is and what it does.
Computer Aided Design' Programs (CAD)
In environmental programming, It is an interactive way of working with the user on the on-screen design of buildings. etc. by trying out a whole range of alternatives.
Concrete Operational Stage
It is the period from the ages of seven to eleven years during which children's processing capacity increases and they develop the use of memory encoding and retrieval strategies becoming more aware of their own capabilities and limitations.
Conjunction Fallacy
In the method of anchoring and adjustment used in heuristics. It is the error of selecting a second statement without recognizing that everything that is both A and B  must also be A.
Conceptual Dependency (CD)
It is a form of ca grammar which aims to represent the key semantic concepts in language and to capture how these concepts depend upon each other.
The representation of more than one latent element by a single manifest dream element (psychoanalysis) .
Conditioned Reflex
A response that has come to be elicited by an initially ineffective stimulus after that stimulus has been presented together with an initially effective (unconditioned) stimulus.
Conditioning Classical
Associative learning in which the reinforcement follows the presentation of a neutral stimulus whether or not the response to be learned occurs.
 Conditioning Instrumental
Learning in which the opportunity to engage in one behaviour (e.g., eating, observing, or sexual activity) is made contingent upon the performance of the response to be learned (e.g., pressing 'a bar or passing a test).
 It is the tendency among young adults in particular, to adopt attitudes, styles of dress and behavior patterns that are guided by peer pressure and the desire to belong to a group rather than by personal choice.
The school of psychology which considers a stimulus-response connection or bond to be the basis of all or most behavior.
Consistency Principle
The desire of the human being to be consistent, especially with regard to his attitudes and beliefs. Theories of attitude formation and change based on the consistency principle include balance theory and congruity theory, which suggest than he individual seeks to avoid imbalance (incongruity) it his various attitudes.
Constitutional Typology
A personality theory which attempts to relate body structure and personality.
Constructive Play
It is a state of play amongst chil­dren when they develop skills by using objects in non-pretend ways, such as doing a jigsaw or pouring sand or water from one container into another
Contemporaneity, Principle of
The proposition that only present factors influence present behaviour; the past influences behaviour only as it is represented in the present (Lewin).
In encoding specificity experiments, intrinsic context refers to various features that are an integral part of a target stimulus, whilst extrinsic context represents those features that are present when the target is encountered.
Control Group
A group comparable to the experimental group in all respects except the condition under experimental investigation, usually referred to as the independent variable.
Coping Resources
These resources are both within the individual and in the environment around them which enable them to deal with stressful situations.
Cortical Localisation
Attributing a certain physical or psychological function to some particular region of the cerebral cortex. such as localizing hearing functions in the temporal lobe.
Cortical Plasticity
It is the ability of the cerebral cortex to change as a function of learning or damage, such as the reacquisition of language function follow­ing damage to the language hemisphere.
A hormone secreted by the outer layer of the adrenal
gland under the influence of adreno­corticotrophic hormone (ACTH).
Counseling Psychologist
A clinical practitioner who specializes in helping and advising adults in troubled and dysfunctional relationships, or who are struggling with ,social problems such as drug or alcohol addiction through interpersonal procedures such as interviewing and tests.
Counselling Psycliology
A sub-field within psychology which deals with the educational, vocational, and adjustment problems of so-called normal persons.
Cranial Nerves
Twelve pairs of nerves arising directly from the cerebrum and passing through an opening in the skull
Creative Thinking
 Productive thinking, with novel rather than routine outcomes.
An abnormality of structure and behaviour which results from insufficient thyroid secretion during early growth. Involves stunted growth protruding abdomen, and pronounced mental retardation.
Crystalized Intelligence
It is one of the two most important general factors which influence performance across many tasks, referring to performance on well-learned and familiar tasks
Cultural Relativism
The view that concepts (such as beauty, normality, or virtue) and standards of behaviour have meaning only in relation to a particular culture.
The study of communication and control in animal and machine (Weiner). Control is typically achieved by feeding back information about the results of past activities as input, as in thermostats which control furnaces or as in various homeostatic mechanisms in animals. Sweating and shivering are temperature-dependent examples in humans that parallel the action of the thermostat.
Dark Adaptation
Increasing visual sensitivity as remains in darkness or low illumination.
Declarative Memory
It is a single form of memory embracing episodic and semantic components.
Deductive Reasoning
This type of reasoning from facts are known or supposed to be true, to other facts that necessarily follows from them.
Defence Mechanism
In Freudian psychology, it is a pattern of self-protective reaction employed by the ego in situations arousing distress or anxiety.
Delayed Response
A response whose performance is permitted only after some set duration of time following the original presentation of the relevant stimuli.
Deliberate Practice
It is a form of acquiring a skill under close supervision, in which specific aspects of the skill are trained, as opposed to general play in which there is no such deliberate plan.
It is a type of reckless behaviour, particularly among adolescents, and sometimes influenced by hormonal changes, which often involves crime, underage drinking and sexual activity, and illegal drug use.
Delta Rule
It is a powerful form of learning, also known as gradient descent learning, which suggests that following a particular action, the difference between the planned outcome and the actual outcome (the error) is calculated, and the system adjusted to reduce the error next time.
Dementia Praecox
A name formerly given to schizophrenia. It means "youthful insanity."
Dependent Variable
An aspect of behaviour or experience which goes with or depends upon changes in the independent variable. Example: speed of 'reaction is partly dependent upon the intensity of the stimulus to whic