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ON V. I. LENIN'S OPINIONS CONCERNING PSYCHOLOGY

 

¬. M. Kedrov

 

The article is a compendium of V. I. Lenin's psychological views stated in the context of development of the problem of man and of man's creative activity in marxist philosophy. Lenin's statements are centered around several key problems: scientific materialistic approach to the understanding of the subject-matter of psychology, place of psychology in the general system of scientific khowledge, the dialectical part-and-whole relations between psychology and logic.

 

THE ACTIVITY PRINCIPLE IN STUDIES OF INTERPERSONAL RELATIONS

 

A. U. Kharash

 

The author reviews the problem of interpersonal relations and interactions in the light of the activity principle Ч a methodological presumption which originates in K. Marx's social philosophy and which has been introduced into psychology in S. L. Rubinstein's and A. N. Leontiev's works. Against this background the author develops a subject-subject paradigm within which he specifies different types of interpersonal perception, and of the dynamics and structure of the latter. In particular object-oriented and subject-oriented types of interpersonal perception are distinguished Ч- the former being typical of unstructured groups, and the latter of collectives. At the same time they are understood as two functionally interdependent structural components of the interpersonal perception: the former is operative in the initial stages of perception, while the second serves to deepen and specify the image of the perceived. Special efforts are made to show the difference between the interpersonal perception and the perceptual processes as they are traditionally treated in the general psychology.

 

ORGANIZATION AND MECHANISMS OF VOLUNTARY COGNITIVE PROCESSES AND MOTOR ACTS IN NAN

 

N. I. Chouprikova

 

The article is a review of experimental studies of the organization and mechanisms of the voluntary activity performed in 40-70-ies in the USSR APN Institute of the general and pedagogical psychology. The author is most interested to show the historical and conceptual continuity of researches performed at different times and by different groups of researchers. Intrinsic conceptual links are revealed between A. V. Zaporozhets' finding that sensations are enhanced as a result of orientation, Ye. I. Boiko's idea that the second sygnalling system's impulses can alter the local excitability of analyzers, A. N. Sokolov's ideas concerning the role of covert speech kinaesthetic sensations in purposeful selection of sensory information and in turning weak environmental components from being unnoticable into being noticable, D. A. Oshanin's studies of the operative images and O. A. Konopkin's studies of the role of higher level conscious regulation in man's psychomotor reactions. The author concludes that although

 

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the reviewd studies were mainly performed independently of each other they all share the same theoretical platform: I. A. Pavlov's concept of the second sygnalling system, and L. S. Vygotsky's concept of the leading role of speech in development of man's higher mental functions.

 

THE CATEGORY OF OBJECT ACTIVITY AND CLASSIFICATION OF THE UNCONSCIOUS PHENOMENA

 

A. G. Asmolov

 

The author considers the genesis, functions, and specific features of different unconscious phenomena in the light of the general psychological theory of object activity (A. N. Leontiev). Proceeding from the fundamental principles of theory Ч assumptions that psychological activity is thing-bound and that mental reflection of an object is determined by its place in the structure of the activity performed by the reflecting person Ч the author outlines three classes of the unconscious phenomena: superin-dividual superconscious phenomena, unconscious motives and semantic sets, and unconscious menchanisms of control over actions and operations. The problems and directions of research in the context of which the phenomena corresponding to these classes have been studied are described Ч particularly the problem of acquisition and transfer of experience, the problem of determination of activity at the personality level, the problem of voluntary control over higher forms of behavior, and the problem of automatization of different kinds of internal and external activity. Better understanding of the nature of the unconscious phenomena belonging to different classes should help in finding more adequate methods for the study of them.

 

CAUSES OF TRANSFORMATION (RE-INTERPRETATION) OF THE INSTRUCTIONAL TASK IN THE PROCESS OF LEARNING

 

V. T. Dorokhina

 

The author points to a specific stage in the process of learning where the task set before a subject turns into a task he accepts as his own, i. e. the stage where on the basis of an external requirement there develops an internal program. Diagnostic experiments revealed that the external requirement is often re-interpreted by the subjects which finds its manifestation in the efficiency of his performance. The following factors which may lead to the re-interpretation of tasks were established: presence of fixed sets, absence of adequate means for dealing with objects given as the goals to be achieved, absence of the semantically-charged motivation meaningfully related to the task.

 

188

 

NEURONAL MECHANISMS OF THE SACCADIC MOVEMENTS OF EYES

 

Ye. N. Sokolov

 

A model built of neuron-like elements is suggested as a result of study of the saccadic eye movements. The model as a whole represents basic features of the saccadic movements, while every single element is an approximation to one of the real-system neurons participating in the production of the saccade.

Saccadic movements are initiated in the field of the primary command neurons; each of them is capable of generating a saccade characterized by a specific direction of motion and by a fixed amplitude. These limitations are imposed by the secondary command neurons which due to their connections with moto-neurons of the eye muscles determine the horisontal and vertical components of the saccadic movements.

Involuntary saccades accompany excitation of the local detectors of the signal's position on a non-constant screen which represents the signal in relation to the retina. Voluntary saccades appear in the situation of excitation of the local detectors of the signal's position on the constant screen which provides constant representation of the signal irrespective of the line of sight. The process of learning in the system of the eye saccadic movements is represented as development of connections between the detectors selectively responding to the object's features and the neurons commanding the saccadic movements of the eyes.

 

DECISION-MAKING IN DETECTION AND RECOGNITION

 

Yu. A. Indlin

 

A model of decision-making in detection and recognition capable of learning when taught and of self-learning, is described. Decisions in relation to a continuum of sensory effects are made on the basis of a response criterion.

The subjects do not calculate the criterion; they control its position on a sensory axis in relation to an optimal criterion. As an indicator they use the current proportion of the responses they make: if the current proportion is less than the proportion which corresponds to the optimum criterion, the criterion is assumed to be higher than the optimum one, and the subjects lower it, and vice versa. As a result the criterion in the experiment oscillates around a certain optimum value.

Proportion of signal trials reported to a subject, as well as any other fixed value which develops due to the experimental instruction, personal experience, or the feedback provided by the experimenter Ч can serve as the proportion of the responses determining the optimum criterion.

 

HUMAN ENGINEERING OR ERGONOMICS?

 

A. A. Piskoppel, L. P. Shedrovitsky

 

Correlation of two notions Ч "human engineering" and "ergonomics" Ч is discussed. Two stages in the understanding of the subject-matter of these notions in this country are indicated. It is shown that at first

 

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(late 50-ies Ч early 60-ies) for experts in the field there existed only one discipline and only one notion corresponding to it, while the terms "human engineering" and "ergonomics" were treated as synonims. This understanding reflected the relations which existed at that time between foreign equivalents of the discipline: american "human engineering" and british "ergonomics". The second stage (late 60-ies Ч 70-ies) is characterized by regular attempts to break the discipline into two and to present "human engineering" and "ergonomics" as two different notions. Arguments of the advocates of this division are presented and analyzed. The attempts to constitute two disciplines are shown to ignore the historical developments in the corresponding sphere of knowledge. In conclusion the authors suggest the proper grounds and framework for the discussion of the problem of correlation between these two notions: "human engineering" and "ergonomics".

 

DYNAMIC CHARACTERISTICS OF THE NERVOUS SYSTEM AND THE PROBLEM OF NATURAL ROOTS OF ABILITIES

 

M. K. Akimova

 

The article deals with the problem of connection between performance and the typological properties of the nervous system. Proceeding from a number of experimental studies the author argues that there may be two kinds of such dependence. First, performance may depend on the level of development of the so-called individual style. Second, the level of potential achievements can be limited by the very essence of the individual nervous system and its properties. Acknowledgment of the dependence of performance on individual typological properties is of utmost importance for understanding the role of natural endowment in development and manifestation of abilities. Underestimation of the role of the basic properties of the nervous system as the natural basis of abilities leads to crucial mistakes in understanding of abilities.

 

LEARNABILITY AND MEMORY IN FIRST-YEAR SCHOOLCHILDREN

 

I. P. Ivanova

 

The author presents some new data showing that the first-year schoolchildren are characterized by striking individual differences in the ability to learn and in properties of the mechanical memory; less evident is the fact that there is a pronounced correlation between the level of the general ability to learn and the ability to memorize senseless material. Ability to learn and remember material which has nothing to do with the previous life-experience and therefore can not generate meaningful associations requires a certain degree of mental activity and self-organization on the part of children, who as the experiments show significantly differ from each other in that quality. The results obtained in the study enable the author to state that development of mechanical memory should be considered one of the factors of general learnabilty in first-year schoolchildren.

 

190

 

NEUROPHYSIOLOGICAL MECHANISMS OF THE IDEOMOTOR TRAINING

 

L. Pikkennein

 

The paper is an experimental attempt to conceptualize the phenomenon of the ideomotor training. The author suggests that performance of motor acts by human beings requires existence of the internal feedback (as distinct from external exteroceptive links).

 

STUDY OF COLOUR SELECTION IN PRE-SCHOOL-CHILDREN EXPERIENCING POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE EMOTIONS

 

V. N. Vorsobin, V. N. Zhidkin

 

A new method of studying colour selection in children is presented. The authors show also how it can be employed for the study of emotional states in 6Ч7 years-old children.

The procedure can be used for the study of selection of separate spectral colours and of combinations of them. It has been found out in experiments repeated several times during one day and with 2-69 days intervals that every individual child is characterized by a relatively stable background set of selected colours. Experiencing happiness resulted in statistically significant increase in red-yellow colours, while situations of fright were accompanied by significantly reduced selection of red-violet colours and increased selection of green-blue colours. The authors believe that complicated emotional states are better manifested in selection of colour combinations rather than in selection of separate colours. Colour combinations represent complicated colour needs of children, their structure being determined by the modality of corresponding emotional states.

 

EXPERIMENTAL ANALYSIS OF FACTORS CAPABLE OF INFLUENCING THE REPRODUCTION OF INFORMATION IN MAN

 

L. G. Voronin, V. F. Konovalov, G. I. Zhouravlev, I. S. Serikov, A. I. Fedotchev

 

Effect of a number of factors on reproduction of different kinds of information was studied on both children and adults. It has been established that reproduction of messages which are perceived by the brain significantly depends on the rate of their presentation, on a number of interfering agents, on the personality of subjects, and on the specificity of the message in relation to cerebral hemispheres which function differently as far as the mnestic activity is concerned. The results obtained in the study enable the authors to suggest that consolidation of the incoming information in the brain may require in certain cases up to several dozens seconds.

 

191

 

ON THE POSSIBILITY OF CORRECTION OF INADEQUATE SELF-EVALUTION IN TEENAGERS

 

W. Quade, V. P. Trusov

 

One of the salient changes in the teenager's personality is transition from the acceptance of adults' estimations to the self-evaluations. The authors describe an experiment devoted to the teaching of 14-years-old schoolchildren to correct inadequate (overestimated and underestimated) self-evaluations. Two ways of correction were used: communicating to the teenagers opinions of their peers and teachers, and discussing with them the possible reasons of the opinions incongruence. The very awareness by the teenagers of different opinions of others can trigger the mechanism of correction. But the influenceability in persons with the overestimated and underestimated self-evaluations is not the same.

 

IMPORTANCE OF SIMULATION OF COMMON ACTIVITY IN SOLVING INSTRUCTIONAL TASKS

 

R. Ya. Gouzman

 

The paper describes how the schoolchildren tend to simulate their common activity when solving tasks requiring representation of a complex trajectory. The data enables the author to conclude that distribution of cooperative efforts is not a by-product of the organization of learning; but is a significant aspect of the reproduction of general patterns of learning behavior in a particular learning situation; at that the form of cooperation found by the participants is a particular way of solving the given instructional task. The simulation allows the participants to shift themselves from the plane of comprehension of interconnected motions represented in material constructions to the comprehension of their own specifically interconnected acts.

 

A PROCEDURE FOR COMPLEX STUDY OF INTERPERSONAL RELATIONS AND CORRESPONDING FACTORS IN LABOUR, COLLECTIVES

 

“. V. Novikova

 

A new original procedure for the study of the role-functional interrelations in a collective of workers directly engaged in common activity, is offered. The procedure which has been elaborated by the author makes it possible to study also some other aspects of common work in groups and collectives, which Ч although they seem to be very important Ч received Utile attention on the part of researchers, especially from the point of view of the methodology of studying them.

 

192

 

AUTOMATIC DEVICE FOR MEDICAL-PSYCHOLOGICAL MASS STUDIES

 

A. M. Zhdanov, V. P. Zaitsev, M. M. Aliyanov, A. M. Kireev, V. S. Shirokov

 

The paper provides main parameters of an experimental automatic device designed for many-purpose mass medical-psychological studies based on a multi-factor personality inventory (MMPI) in its full and abridged variants. Corresponding hardware is a combination of serially produced and easily obtained equipment somewhat adapted for the purpose.