Brain AP Psych

Somatic Nervous System

Is the division of the peripheral nervous system that enables voluntary control of skeletal muscles, also called the skeletal nervous system.

Pituitary Gland

Under the influence of the hypothalamus, regulates growth and controls other endocrine glands; sometimes called the "master gland".


Is destruction of tissue.

Electroencephalogram (EEG)

Is an amplified recording of the waves of electrical activity of the brain. Encephalo comes from a Greek word meaning "related to the brain".

Computed Tomography (CT Scan)

Is a series of the x-ray photographs combined by computer into composite representation of a slice through the body.

PET (Positron Emission Tomography) Scan

Measures the levels of activity of different areas of the brain by tracing their consumption of a radioactive form of glucose, the brain's fuel.

MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging)

Uses magnetic fields and radio waves to produce computer-generated images that show brain structures more clearly.

fMRI (functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging)

MRI scans taken less than a second apart are compared to reveal blood flow and therefore, brain structure and function.

Brain stem

The oldest and innermost region of the brain, is an extension of the spinal cord and is the central core of the brain; its structures direct automatic survival functions.


Located in brain stem, the "blank" controls breathing and heart beat.

Reticular Formation

Part brain stem, the "blank" is a nerve network that plays an important role in controlling arousal.


Location: Brain stem, the "blank" routes incoming messages to the sensory receiving areas in the cortex and transmits replies to the medulla and cerebellum.


Processes sensory input and coordinates movement output and balance.

Limbic System

Is a neural system associated w/ emotions as fear, aggression and basic psychological drives.


Is part of the limbic system and influences emotions of fear and aggression.


Part of limbic system. The "blank" regulates hunger, thirst, body temp, and sexual behavior, helps govern the endocrine system via the pituitary gland; and contains the so called reward centers of the brain.

Cerebral cortex

is a thin intricate covering of interconnected neural cells atop the cerebral hemispheres. The seat of information processing the cortex is responsible for those complex function (that make us human).
cortex in Latin = "bark" As bark covers a tree, cortex


Or nerve cell, is the basic building block of the nervous system.

Motor Neuron

Carry info and instructions for action from the brain and spinal cord to muscles glands.


Are the neurons of the brain and spinal cord that link the sensory and motor neurons in the transmission of sensory inputs and motor inputs.


Of a neuron are the bushy, branching extensions that receive messages from other nerve cells and conduct impulses toward the cell body.


Are bundles of neural axons, which are part of the PNS, that connect the central nervous system w/ muscles, glands and sense organs.

Peripheral Nervous System (PNS)

Includes the sensory and motor neurons that connect the central nervous system to body's sense receptors muscles and glands it's at the periphery of the body relative to the brain.

Central Nervous System (CNS)

Consists of the brain and spinal cord; it's located at the center, or internal core, of the body.

Nervous System

is the speedy electro chemical communication system, consisting of all the nerve cells in the peripheral and central nervous system.


Are natural, opiate-like neurotransmitters linked to pain control and to pleasure.
END pain.


Of a neuron is the extension that sends impulses to other nerve cells or to muscles or glands.


Is level of stimulation that must be exceeded for the neuron to fire, or generate an electrical impulse.

Myelin Sheath

Is a layer of fatty tissue that segmentally covers many axons and helps speed neural impulses.


is the absorption of excess neurotransmitters by sending neuron.


are chemicals that are released into synaptic gaps and transmit neural messages from neuron to neuron.


Is the junction between the axon tip of the sending neuron and the dendtrite or cell body of the receiving neuron. The tiny gap at this junction is called the synaptic gap or cleft.

Autonomic Nervous System

Is the division of peripheral nervous system that controls the glands and the muscles of internal organs and thereby controls internal functioning; it regulates the automatic behaviors necessary for survival.

Sympathetic Nervous System

Is the division of autonomic nervous system that arouses the body, mobilizing its energy in stressful situations.

Parasympathetic Nervous System

Us the division of the autonomic nervous system that calms the body, conserving its energy.

Sensory Neurons

Carry info from the sensory receptors to the brain and spinal cord for processing.


Is a simple, automatic, inborn response to a sensory stimulus; it's governed by a very simple neural pathway.

Endocrine System

The body's "slow" chemical communication system, consists of glands that secrete hormones into the bloodstreams.


Are chemical messengers mostly those manufactured by the endocrine glands that are produced in one tissues on which they have a specific effects.

Adrenal Glands

Produce epinephrine and norepinephrine, hormones that prepare the body to deal with emergencies or stress.
AKA Flight or fight response.