Central Nervous System

  • James G. HollandsworthJr.
Part of the The Plenum Series in Behavioral Psychophysiology book series (SSBP)


Psychologists have a special interest in the central nervous system (CNS), particularly the “gray matter,” that thin layer of neocortical cells only 2 to 5 mm deep in which our most highly developed capabilities reside. Our cerebral cortex allows us to hear, taste, smell, feel, and see. In addition, it puts all of these sensory inputs together in meaningful ways. This is where we “know” things and form our “thoughts.” Further, the neocortex allows for the most delicate control of our finest muscles, notably those in our hands, feet and face. And finally, the neocortex, particularly that part that is located in the very frontmost part of the brain, is where we make plans, contemplate the future, render judgments, set priorities, solve problems, and organize long sequences of behavior. It is little wonder, then, that the cerebral cortex, with all that it allows us to do, plays such a prominent role in our models of human behavior.


Cerebral Cortex Gray Matter Basal Ganglion Motor Cortex Cranial Nerve 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Recommended Readings

  1. Luria, A. R. (1973). The working brain: An introduction to neuropsychology. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  2. Kolb, B., and Whishaw, I. Q. (1980). Fundamentals of human neuropsychology. San Francisco: W. H. Freeman.Google Scholar
  3. Carlson, N. R. (1977). Physiology of behavior. Boston: Allyn and Bacon.Google Scholar
  4. Mason, E. B. (1983). Human physiology. Menlo Park, CA: Benjamin/Cummings.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • James G. HollandsworthJr.
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Southern MississippiHattiesburgUSA

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