Confusing Pairs
  • Independent Variable (what is tested) vs. Dependent Variable (what is measured)
  • Experimental Group (group that is tested) vs. Control Group (compared to the experimental, receives the placebo in a drug experiment)
  • Left Brain (language and logic) vs. Right Brain (creative and spatial)
  • Corpus Callosum (divides the brain) vs. Cerebral Cortex (covers the brain)
  • Sympathetic Nervous System (“fight or flight”) vs. Parasympathetic (calming - parachute)
  • Neurotransmitters (in the nervous system) vs. Hormones (in the endocrine system)
  • Brocas Area (makes words) vs. Wernickes Area (comprehends words)
  • Afferent neurons (sensory, body to brain) vs. Efferent neurons (motor, brain to body)
  • Assimilation (all four-legged animals are “doggies”) vs. Accommodation (“doggies” are different than “kitties”)
  • Concrete operations (logical thinking) vs. Formal operations (philosophical thinking)
  • Classical conditioning (involuntary) vs Operant Conditioning (voluntary)
  • Primacy Effect (first items remembered) vs. Recency Effect (last items remembered)
  • Proactive Interference (loss of the new info because of old) vs. Retroactive Interference (loss of old info because of new)
  • Implicit Memory (non-declarative, skills) vs. Explicit Memory (declarative, facts)
  • Recall Memory (no cues) vs. Recognition Memory (some hints)
  • Algorithms (step by step) vs. Heuristics (rule of thumb)
  • Representative Heuristics (stereotypes) vs. Availability Heuristics (based on available info)
  • Intrinsic Motivation (for personal satisfaction) vs. Extrinsic motivation (for rewards)
  • Cerebellum (implicit memory) vs. Hippocampus (explicit memory)
  • Morphemes (smallest unit that carries a meaning) vs. Phonemes (smallest unit that has a distinct sound)
  • Language Development : Skinner (Language development is based on environmental influence) vs. Chomsky (Innate Ability to speak/Universal Grammar)
  • Intelligence: Fluid (solving things) vs. Crystalline (information and facts)
  • Morality: Pre-conventional (rewards) vs. Conventional (laws) vs. Post-conventional (sense of inner morality)
  • Parenting Styles: Authoritarian (“Because I said so!”) vs. Authoritative (best kind of parenting)
  • Fixed Ratio (fixed numbers) vs. Fixed Interval (fixed numbers) vs. Variable Ratio (numbers that vary) vs. Variable Interval (time that varies)
  • Operant Conditioning: Punishment (weakens behavior) vs. Negative Reinforcement (strengthens behavior)
  • Dream Content: Latent (The underlying but more true meaning of a dream) vs. Manifest (All the parts of the dream that we remember - the actual content)
  • Testing: Reliability (taking test multiple times and getting similar outcomes) vs. Validity (test measures what it is supposed to) vs. Standardization
  • Statistics: Measures of Central Tendency (mean - average score, median - middle of the score range, and mode - the most frequent score) vs. Measures of Variation (variance, standard deviation, and standard error of the mean)
  • Personality: Internal Locus of Control (belief that you control your own destiny, behaviors are under your own control) vs. External Locus of Control (belief that one’s fate is determined by chance or outside forces beyond their personal control)