Physiology of Behaviour

4/5, 4 from 1 review
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Global Edition, 12th Edition

Recent Reviews

  1. aemetha
    Great introduction to the science involved in substances and addiction
    4/5, 4 out of 5, reviewed Feb 21, 2018
    • + Well laid out
    • + Covers many interrelated issues relevant to drug use and addiction
    • + No significant prior knowledge required to learn from it
    • + Illustrates well the links between biology and psychology
    • + Further support available through MyPsychLab
    • - A few factual errors at various points
    • - Extensive use of acronyms
    The book is well laid out. Rather than jumping straight into the meat of the issues most people want to learn it begins by explaining the anatomy, development, mechanics of the nervous system and how they are studied, psychopharmacology as well as a bit of overview of the history of the science.

    The first five chapters serves as a foundation for the information found in later chapters, and you can relatively easily read those chapters and then skip right to the part you are most interested in. In the later chapters, if something is relevant to the subject from a different chapter it is clearly identified.

    One criticism of the book is that there are a couple of errors to be found in it. For example, it uses the example of aripiprazole being a partial agonist of certain receptors as an argument for why atypical antipsychotics have more favourable outcomes for the negative symptoms of schizophrenia. Aripiprazole is unusual in this respect however, and most atypical antipsychotics are not partial agonists. Overall, most of the information is quite accurate however.

    A second criticism of the book is that later chapters rely heavily on acronyms. This makes sense in terms of packaging the book and reducing the word count, and is common in the field, but many readers will not immediately be familiar with them and that can result in some flipping back to the initial chapters to figure out exactly what is being described.

    Criticisms aside however, this book does what it is intended to do very ably - introduce the biology of the nervous system and relate that back to how it affects behaviour. Beyond the first five chapters members of this forum may be interested in the chapters on the body senses (includes pain, chapter 7) sleep and biological rhythms (chapter 9), learning and memory (very relevant to addiction, chapter 13), neurological and psychological disorders (chapters 15 to 17) and substance abuse (chapter 18).
    3 members found this helpful.

Book Details

  1. Book Type:
    Neil R. Carlson, Melissa A. Birkett
    This is a behavioural neuroscience textbook. Behavioural neuroscience is the study of how biology and psychology interact. The book begins by explaining development of the nervous system, the methods through which the nervous system is studied and the basic anatomy and mechanisms of neurons and their supporting cells.

    Later chapters explore different aspects of the nervous system with an emphasis on how that translates to behaviour. Substance use and addiction is covered as well as related issues such as the neurological mechanisms of learning and psychological and neurological disorders.

    Further support in learning with this text is available with the purchase of the online application "MyPsychLab".

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