According it easier to pinpoint what issues


According to James W. Kalat, the study of biological psychology
is defined as: “the study of the physiological, evolutionary, and developmental
mechanisms of behavior and experience” (2016). Psychology consists of four
explanations of behavior in biological psychology, and they are: physiological,
ontogenetic, evolutionary, and functional, Kalat explains each in his
Biological Psychology book (2016). Each sets out to explain behavior from a
different perspective, and to explore why such behaviors are being done. Biopsychology
explores a wide range of topics, from the discussion of human consciousness,
debating the difference between neurological and psychological disease, and
even understanding our own visual system. This section contains many topics
that are essential to many careers.

            This biopsychology course is
extremely important to my future as a doctor. Knowing the parts of the human
brain and the functions that each part of the brain controls is essential to
how I diagnose patients in the future. Despite the lack of clarity in relation
to whether psychological diseases affect the brain or not, knowing how
psychological disorders affect a person’s biology or their brain will also make
it easier to pinpoint what issues the patient is having. Even learning about
the synapses, vision, movement, and stages of sleep are all important to
understanding the issues a patient is having, and I will learn about those
things in medical school, but getting a head start with this course will
improve my retention in the future when we delve into such topics. Being that
this class is essential to my future, looking forward to some of the topics
will help me be more receptive towards a lot of the information.

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            There are many exciting topics that we will
explore throughout this course, and aside from learning the functions of
different parts of the brain, I am most excited about learning about the
different neurological and psychological disorders. After taking psychopathology,
and learning about the many different types of mental disorders, I was
interested in seeing how the brain changes or does not change in response to
those disorders. I also want to learn how our bodies respond to neurological
disorders and psychological disorders too, because psychological disorders are
not viewed as real disorders, especially in my culture. Learning how these
disorders affect us and our bodies will help me combat some of those stigmas
that people have about mental disorders. The many topics that we will cover in bio
psych excite me, but I meet each one with a little bit of nervousness.

Even though I am excited for many of the topics that we will
learn, I am worried about falling behind in the course. Each topic is packed
with so much new information, and rather than asking the professor for help, I
tend to “try to figure things out” on my own, which can end with me
understanding the topic completely or completely confusing myself. I also fear
all of the information piling up without me being able to process all of it. I
also am scared of losing motivation. I have noticed a pattern in which I start
out the semester with good grades, and I start out with an enormous amount of
motivation, but it slowly dies down. As I get closer and closer to the end of
the semester, I start to lose my motivation, and end up with mediocre grades,
which is not something I am pleased with at all. Despite approaching this
section with some uncertainty, changing some of the ways I did things in the past
will certainly help me with this course.

Changing the way I take on this subject will really help me
excel the way I want to. In all of my classes, I usually did not read
beforehand, which is something I am changing this semester. Reading the
material prior to the class will help me in being more prepared, and will ease
the process of taking notes during class and understanding the material. I also
learn a little bit better with videos, and I intend to utilize that this
semester. Previously, when I would have trouble understanding a certain topic,
I would search for a different way to understand it, by looking at other online
sources or watching a video. I realized that watching videos, or viewing the
topic in a different way than my professor explained it was a way that helped
me overcome topics that I did not understand.

 I also try to correct my
misunderstandings without seeing the professor, and I usually do not realize I
need help until it is essentially “too late”. In order to get rid of this bad
habit, I will utilize the professor’s office hours, if I have any trouble
understanding a topic. I have also heard that studying in a group is a very
effective way to study, and I intend to use that, but only after I study the
topic by myself at first. I have noticed that when friends study with each
other, it makes it harder for them to stay on track, so if I study by myself at
first, I can come into the session with minimal questions and try to steer the
group towards a more focused direction.

The syllabus is structured in a way that makes it easy for me to
understand what assignments are due on blackboard, and see what reflections we
have to turn in, but I do not see any assignments labelled ‘Mindtap’. Perhaps
labelling the Mindtap assignments will make it a little bit clearer for
students to understand when they have to complete Mindtap assignments or

There were many important points in the introduction portion of
the textbook, while the paper mainly focused on the debate between
psychological and neurological disorders. The textbook introduction discussed
consciousness and the way it has been looked at. Consciousness can be looked at
in two ways: it can be ignored or viewed as fundamental. Both perspectives are
not ideal, because they don’t fully support the idea of consciousness, and
neither delves into what consciousness really is (Kalat, 2016). The article by
Anthony David, and Timothy Nicholson mainly described a study in which the
brains of patients with “neurological disorders” were compared with patients
that had “psychological disorders”. The result showed the parts of the brain
that were associated with bodily mechanisms were affected by neurological
disorders, while the “visual association cortex” aligned more with the
psychiatric disorders (2015).

One concept that I had trouble understanding is why certain
disorders that show activity in the brain are not considered neurological. The
article mentions schizophrenia, and how it has an effect on the CNS, but it is
still not considered a neurological disorder. I want to know why psychologists
and neurologists are adamant about keeping the two types of disorders
completely separated, when some of them fall into both categories and/or gray


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