Bernard Luskin, EdD, MFT
Wright Graduate University
In June 2020, I published an article on psychologytoday.com about learning and media psychology. In response to the article, I received many questions about the Neurotechnology of Media Psychology. In answering the questions online and to students in a Goddard College Master class in education, I explained that media psychology requires knowing how the physiology of the human response network works at the nerve, node, and neural network level. The granular mechanics that translate communications in the brain into personal experiences and memories in the mind is a physical-mental process. The brain’s neurotechnology network processes communications that translate signals into perceptions, understanding, and experiences in the mind.
Donald Hebb (1949) published Hebb’s Rule as a metaphor describing the learning connections in a neural network. The rule states that neurons in the brain that fire together wire together to form a neural network. The American Psychological Association (2020) defines psychology as the study of mind and behavior. The actual physical manifestations of communications occur through a neural network of dendrites and synapses in the brain manifesting experiences that register in the mind. Each experience comprises a sensory response decoded through the mind’s interpretation of symbols translated through language into understanding. The network in the brain is physical; the network in the mind is perceptual.
Synesthesia is the phenomenon of experiencing multiple sensations including color, taste, and feel. Human senses include hearing, seeing, feeling, touching, smelling, and tasting. Translating and remembering these physical sensations affect behavior. Physically, each sense is separate. We hear with ears; see with our eyes, smell, touch, feel, and taste through our skin. Perception, including sensory couplings, happen to everyone all the time. Cytowic (1989), who reported synesthesia to mainstream science, suggests that everyone experiences some level of synesthesia which involves the physical and perceptual interpretations of the senses. Now, through the use of fMRI (functional magnetic resonance imaging), monitoring, imaging, and measuring, we can better understand and document how perception occurs in the brain. We now know more about how media psychology works than ever before. My learning model (Luskin, 2019) explains synesthesia through a 3s model: (a) Synesthesia, (b) Semiotics, and (c) Semantics which combine in the brain to form perceptions in the mind registered in our memory.
New ways of learning
Advances in digital signal processing have made us more human-centered and screen deep. We are increasingly learning through our computers, iPads, iPhones, Apple Watch-type wrist devices, cable and satellite TV and webinars, and all forms of social media.
Media, educational and neuro-psychology, and technology have added and continue to add ways of sharing knowledge anywhere and anytime. We are not alone together. We are engaging together in additional ways as we continue to learn in new and empowering ways. What your brain interprets in your mind, translates into the art and science of living.
A group from the National Center for Biotechnology Information has proposed the creation of a national network of neurotechnology centers to enhance and accelerate the BRAIN Initiative to optimally leverage the effort and creativity of individual laboratories involved in it. As “brain observatories” these centers could provide a critical interdisciplinary environment for realizing ambitious and complex technologies for providing individual investigators with access to them (Alivisatos, 2015).
Media Psychology, a specialty whose time is here and understanding the neurotechnology of media psychology, is fundamental in understanding how individuals think, behave, and experience life.
Alivisatos A. P., Chun, M., Church, G. M., Greenspan R. J., Roukes, M. L., Yuste R. (2015). A National Network of Neurotechnology Centers for the BRAIN Initiative. Neuron, 88, 445-448. doi:10.1016/j.neuron.2015.10.015
American Psychological Association. (2020). Definition of Psychology (Public Information). Available https://www.apa.org/support/about-apa. Retrieved June 26, 2020, from the American Psychological Association
Cytowic, R. E. (1989). Synesthesia (1st ed. Vol. 1). Boston: MIT Press.
Hebb, D. O. (1949). The Organization of Behavior, A Neuro-psychological Theory (1st ed.) New York: Wiley.
Luskin, B. J. (2020). The Neurotechnology of Media & Learning Psychology]. Psychology Today, 52 (Luskin Learning Psychology). https://www.psychologytoday.com/au/blog/the-media-psychology-effect/202006/the-neuropsychology-media-learning-psychology-explained?amp=
Luskin, B. J. (2019). Synesthesia, Semiotics, Semantics, and How We Learn. [Media Psychology]. Psychology Today, 46 (Luskin Learning Psychology). https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-media-psychology-effect/201906/synesthesia-semiotics-semantics-and-how-we-learn