Perception in Psychology Meaning, Definition, and Essay; Perception is the sensory expertise of the globe. It involves each recognizing environmental stimuli and actions in response to those stimuli. Through the sensory activity method, we tend to gain data concerning the properties; and components of the surroundings that are unit vital to our survival. What is Structuralism in a Psychology Essay? It does not solely create our expertise of the globe around America; it permits us to act among the environment.

Here is the article to explain, What is essay of Perception in Psychology with their Meaning and Definition!

Perception, according to Yolanda Williams, a psychology professor; can be defined as our way to recognize and interpret the information we’ve gathered through our senses. This also includes how we respond to a certain situation with the given information. Psychology is the study of behavior and mental processes. They relate to psychology because as discussed in the notes, psychology is the study of behavior and mental processes; while perception is how we react to situations. In other words, our behavior towards that situation.

What does means Perception? Meaning and Definition;

It includes the 5 senses touch, sight, sound, smell, and taste. It additionally includes what is referred to as interception; a group of senses involving the flexibility to observe changes in body positions and movements. It additionally involves the psychological feature methods needed to process data; like recognizing the face of a lover or police investigation a well-known scent.

Another word often associated with perception is sensation. They are often used interchangeably, however; sensation is the process of reevaluating information from the world into the brain. We use our senses to detect and recognize something; which then allows us to process the information and discover the emotions and react to the situation we see, which is perception.

Types of the Perception;

Some of the main types of perception include: Vision, Touch, Sound, Taste, and Smell; other senses allow us to perceive things such as balance, time, body position, acceleration, and the perception of internal states. Many of these are multimodal and involve more than one sensory modality. Social perception, or the ability to identify and use social cues about people and relationships, is another important type of perception.

There are two types of theories to perception, there is the self-perception theory and the cognitive dissonance theory. There are many theories about different subjects in perception. Some disorders relate to perception even though you may think perception is just a person’s viewpoint.

First, the self-perception theory, inspired by B. F. Skinner’s analyses, is when individuals come to “know” or better understand their attitudes, emotions, and other personal states mostly by concluding them from observing their behavior and/or the situations in which this behavior occurs. One example would be an individual who describes “butterflies in the stomach”. We have all identified this feeling for ourselves, on our own (Bem).

The cognitive dissonance theory is a person having two thoughts that contradict each other. For example, a person that thinks eating sugar is bad for you, but then continues to eat sugar; because they believe that not eating sugar, wouldn’t change anything, so nothing will change the current health the individual is in. These thoughts are contradicting, almost hypocritical. According to Leon Festinger, the existence of dissonance causes the individual to be psychologically uncomfortable; which then allows the individual to try to remain constant in his/her thoughts. Also, while the individual wants to become consistent, the individual will try to avoid situations that include that subject that causes dissonance (Festinger).

Other things in psychology;

Like other things in psychology, there is a lot of science behind the perception. One thing has to do with light and our eyes. When looking in a mirror, light bounces off your face, and then off the mirror, and then into your eyes. Your eyes then take in all that energy and transform it into neural messages that your brain processes and organizes into what you see. As humans, we only see a small fraction of the full spectrum of electromagnetic radiation that ranges from gamma to radio waves.

Our eyes percept what we see based on wavelengths and amplitudes. Wavelengths and frequency determine their hue; for example, short wavelengths and high frequencies omit blueish colors, whereas long wavelengths and low frequencies omit reddish colors. The amplitude determines the intensity or brightness. Large amplitudes are bright colors, and small amplitudes are dull colors.

After taking in light through the pupil and the cornea, it hits the transparent disc behind the pupil called the lens. This focuses the light rays into specific images, which projects these images onto the retina. The retina is the inner surface of the eyeball that contains all of the receptor cells that begin sensing that visual information. Once reached the ganglion cells, the axon tails form the ropy optic nerve through the thalamus, to the brain’s visual cortex, which is located in the occipital lobe. This allows us to view things in the world.


An example of our perception of the things we look at and how they can differ depending upon the person would be The Dress. The Dress became an internet phenomenon overnight because people couldn’t agree on what color it was. Some people swore that they saw a white dress with gold lace, while others saw a blue dress with black lace. Scientists studied the dress and concluded that the different perception of color is due to the expectation that the dress will appear the same under different lighting, explaining color constancy. People who saw the dress as white and gold, probably saw that the dress was lit by sunshine, causing their brains to ignore the shorter, bluer wavelengths. The people that saw the dress as blue and black, saw it lit by false lighting; causing their brains to ignore longer, redder wavelengths (Lewis).

Oliver Sacks, a famous physician, professor, and author of unusual case studies, is viewed as a brilliant individual for his work; however, cannot do a simple task such as recognizing himself in a mirror. He has a form of Prosopagnosia, which is a neurological disorder that impairs an individual’s ability to perceive or recognize faces. This is also known as face blindness. He can perceive other information, such as his handwriting, or book on a shelf, but is not able to recognize a close friend in a crowd. His Fusiform Gyrus, thought to be crucially involved in face perception, is malfunctioning. Many studies show that other parts of the brain; such as the occipital lobe, and amygdala also play a key role in this disorder.


Another disorder having to do with perception is the Hallucinogen Persisting Perception Disorder. According to DSM 5, it is a psychiatric disorder that is very different from Palinopsia, which is a medical disorder. Palinopsia causes people to see reoccurring images even after the stimulus has left. With Hallucinogen Persisting Perception, the individual sees higher intensities of distractions or interferences than an individual with normal vision does. It is normal to stare at something bright and see light particles called floaters. A person with Hallucinogen experiences higher frequencies and this interferes with their everyday life. An example of an individual with this disorder would be that the person may have difficulty naming colors or telling the difference between them. Another issue they may have is while reading, the words and letters may seem to move all over the page.

The perception exists often influenced or even biased by our expectations, experiences, moods, and sometimes cultural norms. This is where the mind comes in, not just the brain. We are even able to fool ourselves due to our expectations. Our eyes play a role in perceiving information to our brain, but really, our mind has the most power. Our perceptual set is the psychological factors that determine how we perceive the environment. For example, our perception can exist influenced by our mood. People often say a hill is steeper when listening to depressing music and walking alone; however, it would feel less steep if you were listening to pop, or a cheery tune and walking with a friend.


The figure-ground relationship is the organization of the visual field into objects that stand out from their surroundings. For example, the very common black and white picture of either a vase or two faces. It could be a white vase on a black background or two faces on a white background. If you look long enough, your perception will flip between the two, causing the figure and ground to flip also. Sometimes the vase is the figure and the black is the background, whereas the faces are the figure and the white is the background.

Another example is if you are in a crowd of people and trying to listen to a certain person from across the room. You only hear what that person is saying, which makes the individual the figure. Whereas everyone else around you that is speaking is the ground. Another part of perception is proximity. This is an example that we like to group nearby things. Instead of seeing a ton of random people at a party; we tend to mentally connect people standing next to each other. For example, athletes in one spot, the government team in another spot, etcetera.


Something else important to perception would be depth perception. This is the ability to see objects in three dimensions, even though images that strike the retina are two-dimensional. Depth perception also helps us to perceive an object’s distance and full shape. We use binocular cues, the retinal disparity that depends on the use of two eyes. The retinal disparity exists used for perceiving depth. For example, by holding your index fingers in front of your face and proceeding to look beyond them, you now have four fingers instead of two. Monocular cues, such as interposition and linear perspective, are available to either eye alone. This helps us determine the scale and distance of an object; such as relative height and size, linear perspective, texture gradient, and interposition.


Motion perception exists used to determine the speed and direction of the moving object. Your brain perceives motion mostly based on the idea that shrinking objects are moving away, or retreating, and enlarging objects are coming fourth or approaching. However, your brain can easily stand misled when it comes to motion. For example, large objects appear to move slower than small ones that are going at the same speed. Also, organizing things by form, depth, and motion, our perception of the world requires consistency, which brings us back to the cognitive dissonance theory.

Perceptual constancy is what allows us to continuously recognize an object regardless of its distance, view angle, or motion. Even though it might change color, size, and shape based on conditions. For instance, we all know what a Chihuahua looks like, so if we see a green Chihuahua, we still know it’s a Chihuahua. A person with dissonant beliefs might try to say that it’s not a Chihuahua because it’s a different color, even though it still clearly looks like a Chihuahua.

Factors Affecting Perception;

There are individual differences in perceptual abilities. Two people may perceive the same stimulus differently. The factors affecting the perceptions of people are:

Perceptual learning:

Based on past experiences or any special training that we get, every one of us learns to emphasize some sensory inputs and to ignore others. For example, a person who has got training in some occupation like artistry or other skilled jobs can perform better than other untrained people. Experience is the best teacher for such perceptual skills. For example, blind people identify the people by their voice or by the sounds of their footsteps.

Mental set:

Set refers to preparedness or readiness to receive some sensory input. Such expectancy keeps the individual prepared with good attention and concentration. For example, when we are expecting the arrival of a train; we listen to its horn or sound even if there is a lot of noise disturbance.

Motives and needs:

Our motives and needs will influence our perception. For example, a hungry person exists motivated to recognize only the food items among other articles. His attention cannot exist directed towards other things until his motive stands satisfied.

Cognitive styles:

People stand said to differ in the ways they characteristically process the information. Every individual will have his or her way of understanding the situation. It exists said that flexible people will have good attention; and, they are less affected by interfering influences and be less dominated by internal needs and motives than people at the constricted end.

Our mind is responsible for most of the ways we perceive things. Our eyes and our brain do the science; while our mind decides how were going to take the sensations, or data collected. Our mind decides to retain information from the sensations we experience and evaluate them to different personal views.

Perception in Psychology Meaning Definition and Essay Image
Perception in Psychology Meaning, Definition, and Essay

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