Knowledge will not be acquired without pains and application. It is troublesome and deep digging for pure waters; but when once you come to the spring, they rise up and meet you. -- Felton.


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The Brain’s Building Blocks

Note: These questions are part of a larger data base of questions on Module 3 & are selected to represent the type of question you should expect on unit exam one. You can, in fact, expect to see many of these very same questions on that exam. Exam questions, however, may deal with topics not covered in the self tests or in lectures but are discussed in your textbook. You are responsible for the content of your text book plus the content of lectures, interactive activities, & material on the web site.

Use these sample questions to test yourself & to practice for the test. Click on your choice to see if you are right.

1. If you drew a graph to accurately represent the number of Alzheimer's patients projected in the future, the graph would:

a have a level line
b have a rising slope
c have a decreasing slope
d be difficult to draw since researchers are unsure of its future

2. Consider this: You are a full-grown neuron in a brain that is damaged. What happens to you?

a I can repair only if the damage is limited to the brainstem.
b I don't repair since healing glial cells release an enzyme that destroys me.
c I can repair because brain cells have a great capacity to recover from damage.
d I have a limited capacity to repair since my genetic program turns off regrowth.

3. Consider this: A tired, listless brain walks into a restaurant & looks on the menu for something that could provide fuel for it. What “entree” does the brain order?

•  Calorie soup
 •  Glucose platter
  •  Hormone deluxe
   •  Neurotransmitter buffet

It's a Mickey Mouse World , isn't it?

4. You’re directing actors in a movie on the human brain. The actor portraying the role of glial cell is giving you a hard time. What can you say to the actor to improve his performance?

a “Acting? You call that acting? A glial cell transmits electrical messages!”
b “You are a glial cell. You need to be more supportive of the actors playing neurons, so think support!”
c “Look, there are many other actors who could do your job. Keep in mind that you, as a glial cell, cross the synapse. Listen for your cue!”
d “Do you remember your lines? Do you remember how glial cells help to connect the two hemispheres together to allow information back and forth? You better read the script better!”

5. The question of the relationship between our mental capacities and the physical aspects of the nervous system is typically termed:

a nature versus nurture.
b idealism versus realism.
c reciprocal determinism.
d the mind-body question.

6. The mind is to brain as ________ is to ________.

a right; left.
b running; walking.
c glial cells; neurons.
d mental activities; physical structure.

7. If a neuron lacked dendrites, theoretically it could _______, but not _________ .

a send messages; receive messages
b process messages; send messages
c grow new extensions; have myelin sheaths
d open sodium channels; produce negative charged ions

8. Linda is writing a paper on the function of the myelin sheath. Which of the following is the best title for her paper?

a "Myelin Sheath: Receiving Signals"
b "Myelin Sheath: Insulating the Axon"
c "Myelin Sheath: Storing Neurotransmitters"
d "Myelin Sheath: Releasing Neurotransmitters into the Synapse"

9. A psychology instructor is lecturing on the processes and mechanisms of messages in the nervous system. She has come to the part on the action potential. Which example should she use to illustrate the idea of a nerve impulse?

a a merry go-round
b a bright flash of light
c how a washer cleans clothes
d "The Wave” at a sports stadium where sections of fans stand up and then sit down

10. What accounts for the action potential moving down the axon at a constant speed?

a snowball effect
b all-or-none law
c neuronal push rule
d paced resistance principle

11. The effect of a neurotransmitter on an adjacent neuron, muscle, or organ is:

a excitatory
b inhibitory
c either excitatory or inhibitory
d determined by the all-or-none law

12. Endorphins are secreted when we are

a under great stress.
b falling asleep.
c depressed.
d studying.

13. Alcohol is to GABA as marijuana is to:

a dopamine
b serotonin
c endorphins
d anandamide

14. Neurons that carry information from the senses to the spinal cord are called __________ neurons.

a spinal
b motor
c afferent
d efferent

15. Afferent is to efferent as ________ is to _______.

a motor; sensory
b sensory; spinal
c sensory; motor
d spinal; neuron

16. Reuptake is a process that

a causes the neurotransmitter to continue its effects.
b prevents neurotransmitters from entering the receptor.
c causes neural plasticity.
d removes the neurotransmitter from the synapse & is returns it to the vesicles of the end bulb.

17. Cocaine causes its effects of physiological arousal & feelings of euphoria by:

a preventing reuptake from occurring
b its similar chemical makeup to norepinephrine
c increasing the amount of dopamine released into the synapse
d blocking receptors thereby preventing neurotransmitters from affecting the neuron

18. Curare is to mescaline as _______ is to _________.

a block; mimic
c reuptake; action potential
d norepinephrine; dopamine

19. To function properly, the basal ganglia need a sufficient supply of:

a acetylcholine
b anandamide
c dopamine
d mescaline

20. A mad scientist is designing “a new & improved” nervous system. Which of the following structures should he design first - that is, which should be the building block of the new nervous system?

a neuron
b hindbrain
c motor cortex
d central nervous system

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General Psychology
Robert C. Gates
Neurosis is the inability to tolerate ambiguity.  -- Freud

New There is a wisdom of the head, and a wisdom of the heart. - Charles Dickens