Page history last edited by Jim Davies 14 years, 6 months ago


In the picture, the tectum is number 3.



The tectum is located in the dorsal part of the midbrain below the diencephalon. The name comes from the Latin word for "roof". It is composed of a set of colliculi (sing. colliculus) which resemble small lumps and are responsible for initial processing of sensory information from the eyes and ears. The superior colliculus is responsible for processing of visual information, which is then relayed to the primary visual cortex in the occipital lobe. The inferior colliculus processes auditory information before relaying it to the primary auditory cortex. The terms superior and inferior refer to spatial locations, with the superior colliculus located above the inferior.


The word tectum doesn't exactly spark a mental image, (though the final m may remind you of midbrain) so instead I decided that this is the kind of name Tolkien would have used in the Middle Earth described in his books (Middle Earth, midbrain). The city of Tectum, like any good city, has a small army to protect it. The soldiers are called colliculi (ooh, I know where she's going with this) and in their ranks there are superior and inferior officers. The superior officers observe battles and look at maps to decide on strategies and defence tactics. Thus they are responsible for visual information. The inferior officers, however, are responsible for fighting and listening to orders from higher-ups and battle cries on the field itself. Thus they are responsible for auditory information.


The important part about this analogy is getting the names down. Once you know them, it will be easy to remember their functions and general area.

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