Psych M.D. - Threshold


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Term:Threshold
Definition (Myers):the level of stimulation required to trigger a neural impulse (3)
Definition (alternative): The point that must be exceeded to begin producing a given effect or result or to elicit a response (1)
Contextual explanation: Threshold is basically the amount of energy required to elicit certain response. In psychology, threshold refers to the strength of stimulus required for neurons to carry the signal. Threshold is the easy concept that could be applied to everyday life. For instance, suppose that you want your friend to do psychology homework for you. In return, you need to give appropriate amount of money to satisfy your friend.
The amount of money that your friend requires can be thought as threshold. If you give your friend less amount of money than he or she requires, you cannot elicit wanted response. If you give greater amount, your friend will respond. But don't try to do this, this is just to clarify the concept of the threshold.
Related terms and concepts: insert links to other pages on The Neuron here
Artificial Neural Net
Neurons (blue) store a threshold value. When the sum of impulses from its upward neighbors exceeds the threshold, then the neuron "fires" an impulse to its downward neighbors.












Threshold-Action Potential


In order to start an action potential, the membrane voltage must be greater than -55 mV in this picture. If the stimulus is weaker, the neuron fails to start an action potential. If it is stronger, the neuron starts an action potential.
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Sources: insert WAPA style citations here
  1. threshold. (n.d.) The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. (2003). Retrieved September 10 2009 from http://www.thefreedictionary.com/threshold
  2. Wenham, Chris (2001, November 13). Falken's Maze. Retrieved September 10, 2009, from Disenchanted Web site: http://disenchanted.com/dis/technology/cpe1704tks.html
  3. Myers , D.G. (2003). Psychology Seventh Edition . Holland, Michigan : Worth Publishers .




Edited by: Sueun
Date of last edit: 2009-09-11



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