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Instructions: Find a clip of a movie or show where a portion of the brain (i.e., specific structure and/or area of the brain) is discussed. Provide a general description (i.e., Title, general premise, main characters, etc.) of the piece of work (e.g., movie, documentary, series…any media with a story). Describe the specific scene where the brain is discussed and what was said. Was this description completely accurate? If not, provide an accurate description. If it was an accurate description, find some related information that the clip does not discuss about that portion of the brain. Describe how this information is helpful in your understanding of behaviors and/or mental processes.
For example: In the 1998 film, Waterboy, Adam Sandler plays the main character of Robert “Bobby” Boucher Jr. (AKA the Waterboy or WB). Bobby is a thirty-something longtime waterboy for the University of Louisiana football team. After showcasing his unknown talent of tackling, Bobby is offered a spot on the team, meaning he would need to attend college. In one of his college classes, Bobby shares his belief (perpetuated by his overprotective mother) that alligators are “ornery,” because they do not have a toothbrush to brush all of their teeth. A student provides a more suitable explanation to which the professor adds that, “the medulla oblongata is where anger, jealousy and aggression come from.”
While this is partially true, aggression is actually believed to be a symptom of a dysregulation of the medulla’s primary responsibilities. These are “controlling physiological processes like heart rate and blood pressure.” Therefore, if the medulla is damaged or “enlarged,” an animal can be more susceptible to aggressive behaviors [See class slides for references] In an essay format (i.e., introductory sentence, body, and conclusion sentence) answer the prompts and questions listed above [DO NOT USE THE WATERBOY EXAMPLE]. The majority of students will be able to complete this exercise in less than 2 pages (do not exceed 3 pages).
Purpose: The purpose of this exercise is to seek out representation of the brain in sources other than the textbook. This will provide you with a better understanding of that portion of the brain and the role it plays in behavior and/or mental processes.


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