GRE Subject Test: Psychology : Central Structures & Processes

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for GRE Subject Test: Psychology

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Example Questions

Example Question #1 : Central Structures & Processes

Which of the following structures connects the left and right hemispheres of the brain?

Possible Answers:

Brain stem

Corpus callosum

Amygdala

Broca's area

Correct answer:

Corpus callosum

Explanation:

The corpus callosum is a wide set of nerve fibers that connects the two hemispheres of the human brain. Agenesis of the corpus callosum, a rare birth defect, results in impaired cognitive abilities (e.g. key processes like face processing and other socially-important skills).

Example Question #2 : Central Structures & Processes

Which of the following structures is located in the midbrain, implicated in the production of raw dopamine for usage by the brain and body, and often the target of L-dopa treatments in Parkinson's disease?

Possible Answers:

Inferior colliculi

Crus cerebri

Superior colliculi

Substantia nigra

Midbrain tegmentum

Correct answer:

Substantia nigra

Explanation:

Substantia nigra is named for it's darker appearance relative to its surroundings. It is dark because of high amounts of neuromelanins in its tissues—an apparent byproduct of dopamine production. The substantia nigra is subdivided into two functionally distinct sections: the pars compacta and pars reticulata.

Example Question #3 : Central Structures & Processes

Which of the following describes a noninvasive method for studying brain activity?

Possible Answers:

Position emission tomography (PET scans)

All of these

Electroencephalograms

Magnetic resource imaging (MRIs)

Correct answer:

All of these

Explanation:

In order to examine brain functions, researchers must examine living individuals, rather than the brains of cadavers. This poses several challenges. Sometimes, animal brains are studied using invasive techniques that would be unethical to perform on human subjects. In order to mitigate these challenges and study brain activities, researchers in psychology have developed several noninvasive techniques including PET scans, MRIs, and electroencephalograms. 

Example Question #4 : Central Structures & Processes

Which of the following lobes of the brain is responsible for reward, attention, short-term memory tasks, planning, and motivation? It is also the lobe that tells you the difference between good and bad.

Possible Answers:

Temporal lobe

Anterior lobe

Frontal lobe

Occipital lobe

Parietal lobe

Correct answer:

Frontal lobe

Explanation:

The correct answer is frontal lobe. The frontal lobe is responsible for reward, attention, short-term memory tasks, planning, and motivation. It is also the part that tells a person if they are making a good decision or not. If the frontal lobe is injured, people may not realize they are behaving socially unacceptably. The other choices are incorrect. The parietal lobe is responsible for processing sensory information from your environment. The occipital lobe is responsible for eyesight processing. The temporal lobe is responsible for hearing and memory input. Last, the anterior lobe does not exist.

All GRE Subject Test: Psychology Resources

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