Psych

Topics: Neuron, Action potential, Nervous system Pages: 11 (3244 words) Published: October 22, 2014

What is psychology?
The scientific study of behaviour and the physiological and mental processes that underlie such behaviour. A profession that applies the findings of psychological research to real world problems Wilhelm Wundt

First psychology lab in 1879
Main focus was on consciousness
Many students established research labs in North America and Germany. G. Stanley Hall
Student of Wundt for a brief time
Growth of psychology in North America
Structuralism
Edward TitchenerTo identify and examine the basic components of conscious experiences (i.e., structure) and see how they are related. Sensation and perception (i.e., vision, hearing, etc.)
Examined via introspection - systematic self-observation
Limitation – no independent, objective observations of phenomenon under study Functionalism
William James
Natural selection – heritable characteristics with a survival or reproductive advantage are more likely to be passed on or “selected” over time (Charles Darwin). Psychology should be concerned with the function or purpose of consciousness not the structure Consciousness should not be separated into components, it should be seen as continuous flow of thoughts (stream of consciousness) Interaction between the mind and the environment (i.e., how people adapt to the outside world) Psychology is the study of observable behaviour

Behaviour: any overt response or activity by an organism
Cannot study consciousness because it cannot be directly observed Scientific method – falsifiability
Must be able to show a claim is true or false through observation Stimulus-Response Psychology
Sigmund Freud - psychoanalysis
Focus on unconscious determinants of behaviourUnlearned biological instincts, especially sexual and aggressive impulses, influence thoughts, feelings and behavioursHumanistic Approach Optimistic view of human behaviour

Humans are free and in control of their own destiny
Emphasizes the human desire for personal growth
All humans possess a basic need to evolve to their fullest
Example: positive psychology
Carl Rogers (sense of self) & Abraham Maslow
Applied Psychology
Branch of psychology concerned with everyday, practical problems. Clinical Psychology – diagnosis and treatment of psychological problems and disorders. Increased professionalization of the field occurred after world war II (1950s) Examples: School Psychology, Industrial/Organizational Psychology, Counseling Psychology Cognitive Approach

Renewed interest in cognition (i.e., consciousness) and the biology behind behaviour Cognition : mental processes involved in accumulating knowledge Focuses on how we direct our attention, perceive, remember, think, and solve problems Biological Approach

An organism’s behaviour can be explained by the structures and chemical processes of the body that underlie such behaviour Understanding the brain and nervous system is central to understanding behaviour, thought, and emotion Evolutionary Approach

Emphasizes the importance of the functional purpose and adaptive value of why certain behaviours are formed, modified, and survive over time. Basic premise: natural selection favours behaviour that enhances organisms reproductive success. Chapter 2

The Scientific Method in Psychology:
Formulate a testable hypothesis
Select the research method and design the experiment
Collect the data
Analyze the data and draw conclusions
Report the findings
Goals:
Measurement & description
Understanding & prediction (hypotheses about variables)
Application & control
Why is it important?
Replication (clarity & precision), control incorrect conclusions The Role of Theories:
Theory – a system of interrelated ideas used to explain a set of observations. Must be testable.
Hypotheses can be derived from theories
Formulate a Testable Hypothesis:
Research questions are turned into testable hypotheses:
A hypothesis is a tentative statement about the relationship between two or more variables....
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