Frontal Lobe Functions (PSYL10075)

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Frontal Lobe Functions (PSYL10075)

Aims and objectives: The course will provide an overview of the role that the frontal lobes of the brain play in complex behaviour.  Evidence from neurological patients will be the main focus although functional neuroimaging of healthy individuals will be related where possible. Specific areas include disorders of executive function, memory and social cognition that arise after lesions in specific regions of the frontal lobes and associated structures. Different theoretical views of frontal lobe function will also be discussed. 

 

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this course, students should be able:

 

  • To discuss the impairments typically associated with frontal lobe damage.
  • To describe the neuropsychological assessment of executive functions, memory and social cognition in a clinical setting.
  • To discuss the experimental tests of frontal lobe functions used within neuropsychological research.
  • To demonstrate knowledge of current theories of frontal lobe function.
  • To critically analyse the impact of research using brain damaged patients and the neuroimaging of healthy individuals on current theories of frontal lobe function.

 

Each session will include a lecture; however, there will also be time set aside for small group discussions. 

 

Lecture 1 - Frontal lobe specialisation and assessing frontal lobe functions

References

MacPherson, S.E., Della Sala, S., with Cox, S.R., Girardi, A., & Iveson, M.H. (2015). The Handbook of Frontal Lobe Assessment. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Stuss, D.T., Alexander, M.P., Floden, D., Binns, M.A., Levine, B., McIntosh, A.R., Rajah, N., & Hevenor, S.J. (2002).  Fractionation and localization of distinct frontal lobe processes: Evidence from focal lesions in humans.  In D.T. Stuss & R.T. Knight (Eds.), Principles of Frontal Lobe Function. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Stuss, D.T., & Levine, B.  (2002). Adult clinical neuropsychology: lessons from studies of the frontal lobes. Annual Review of Psychology, 53, 401-433.

Ward, J. (2010). The Student’s Guide to Cognitive Neuroscience.  Hove: Psychology Press.  (The Executive Brain Chapter)

 

Lecture 2 - Frontal lobes, planning and cognitive control

References

Burgess, P.W., Veitch, E., de Lacy Costello, A., & Shallice, T. (2000). The cognitive and neuroanatomical correlates of multitasking. Neuropsychologia, 38, 848-863.

Shallice, T., & Burgess, P.W. (1991). Deficits in Strategy Application Following Frontal Lobe Damage in Man. Brain, 114, 727-741.

Shallice, T., Burgess, P., & Robertson, I. (1996). The Domain of Supervisory Processes and Temporal Organization of Behaviour [and Discussion]Philosophical Transactions: Biological Sciences, 351, 1405-1412.

 

Lecture 3 - Frontal lobes, emotion and behaviour

References

Beer, J.S., & Bhanji, J.P. (2013).  Dynamic social judgement.  In D.T. Stuss & R.T. Knight (Eds.) Principles of Frontal Lobe Function.  Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Dunn, B.D., Dalgleish, T., & Lawrence, A.D. (2006). The somatic marker hypothesis: A critical evaluation. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 30, 239–271.

Tranel, D. (2002).  Emotion, decision making, and the ventromedial prefrontal cortex.  In D.T. Stuss & R.T. Knight (Eds.), Principles of Frontal Lobe Function. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Wood, J.N. (2003). Social cognition and the prefrontal cortex. Behavioral and Cognitive Neuroscience Reviews, 2, 97-114.

 

Lecture 4 - Frontal lobes and the control of memory

References

Baldo, J.V., & Shimamura, A.P. (2002). Frontal lobes and memory. In A.D. Baddeley, M.D. Kopelman & B.A. Wilson (Eds.), The Handbook of Memory Disorders. Chichester: John Wiley & Sons.

Shimamura, A.P. (2002). Memory retrieval and executive control processes. In D.T. Stuss & R.T. Knight (Eds.), Principles of Frontal Lobe Function. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Stuss D.T., & Alexander M.P. (2005). Does damage to the frontal lobes produce impairment in memory? Current Directions in Psychological Science, 14, 84-88.

 

Lecture 5 - Frontal lobes and confabulation

References

Gilboa, A., & Moscovitch, M. (2002). The cognitive neuroscience of confabulation: a review and a model. In A.D. Baddeley, M.D. Kopelman, & B.A. Wilson (Eds.), The Handbook of Memory Disorders. Chichester: John Wiley & Sons.

Gilboa, A., Alain, C., Stuss, D.T., Melo, B., Miller, S., & Moscovitch, M. (2006).  Mechanisms of spontaneous confabulations: a strategic retrieval account. Brain, 129, 1399–1414.

Metcalf, K., Langdon, R., & Coltheart, M. (2010).  The role of personal biases in the explanation of confabulation.  Cognitive Neuropsychiatry, 15(1,2,3), 64-94.

Schnider, A. (2003). Spontaneous confabulation and the adaptation of thought to ongoing reality. Nature Reviews. Neuroscience, 4, 662-671.

 

Assessment

100% examination (April/May diet).

Lecture 1
Frontal lobe specialisation and assessing frontal lobe functions
S.1, 7 George Square.
14/01/2019 - 2:10pm to 4:00pm
Lecture 2
Frontal lobes, planning and cognitive control
S.1, 7 George Square.
21/01/2019 - 2:10pm to 4:00pm
Lecture 3
Frontal lobes, emotion and behaviour
S.1, 7 George Square.
28/01/2019 - 2:10pm to 4:00pm
Lecture 4
Frontal lobes and the control of memory
S.1, 7 George Square.
04/02/2019 - 2:10pm to 4:00pm
Lecture 5
Frontal lobes and confabulation
S.1, 7 George Square.
11/02/2019 - 2:10pm to 4:00pm