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AP Psychology Approaches to Psychology
Psychology is. . . • the science that studies mental processes and behavior in humans and other animals. • the profession which applies the knowledge of this science to practical problems.
Contemporary Approaches to Psychology • Behaviorism studies the effects on the environment on behavior. Only observable events are studied scientifically. Sometimes called stimulus-response (SR) psychology. (6, 8)
Contemporary Approaches to Psychology • Psychoanalytic Theory studies the influence of the unconscious on behavior. (8)
Contemporary Approaches to Psychology • Humanism studies the unique aspects of humans. Humans are free, rational, and have potential for personal growth. (9)
Contemporary Approaches to Psychology • Cognition studies mental processes. • (8, 10)
Contemporary Approaches to Psychology • Biological studies the biological bases of mental processes and behavior (910).
Contemporary Approaches to Psychology Evolutionary studies the evolutionary bases of mental processes and behavior. Behavior has evolved to solve adaptive problems (10).
Research Areas in Psychology Cognitive Psychology focuses on higher mental processes such as memory, reasoning, problem solving, decision making, creativity, language, and information processing. Developmental Psychology studies human development across the life span.
Research Areas in Psychology Experimental Psychology focuses on sensation/perception, motivation, emotion, and learning. However, psychologists in all areas of research do experiments. Personality studies individual’s consistency in behavior and factors which shape personality.
Research Areas in Psychology Physiological Psychology (Biological) studies genetics, chemistry, and the role of the nervous and endocrine systems in behavior. Psychometrics is the measurement of behavior and mental processes, usually through the use and development of psychological tests. Social Psychology studies interpersonal behavior and the social forces which govern behavior.
Professional Specialties in Psychology (15) Clinical Psychologists evaluate, diagnose, and treat people with psychological disorders, as well as less severe behavioral and emotional problems.
Professional Specialties in Psychology • Do not confuse a PSYCHOLOGIST with a PSYCHIATRIST! • A psychologist normally has a Ph. D in psychology and approaches therapy from a mostly non-medical standpoint. • A psychiatrist is a medical doctor (who has an MD) who has specialized in psychiatry and approaches therapy from a medical standpoint.
Professional Specialties in Psychology Counseling Psychologists do similar work as clinical psychologists, but tend to work with people dealing with more common and less severe problems. Some of the areas counselors are specialized in include marriage, family, grief, and career counseling.
Professional Specialties in Psychology Educational Psychologists improve curriculum, teacher education, and standardized tests. School Psychologists test and counsel children with school related problems.
Professional Specialties in Psychology Industrial and Organizational Psychologists work in business and industry to improve HR departments, improve staff morale, and increase worker productivity.
Weiten’s Seven Key Themes in Psychology • Psychology is empirical. • Psychology is theoretically diverse. • Psychology develops in a sociohistorical context. • Behavior is determined by multiple causes.
Weiten’s Seven Key Themes in Psychology • Behavior is shaped by culture. • Both heredity and environment influence behavior. • People’s experience of the world is highly subjective.
The History of Psychology
The New Science Wilhelm Wundt made psychology independent of philosophy and physiology (5).
The New Science (5) • Wundt insisted that psychology be a science and that the scientific method be used to study consciousness. • Wundt is considered the founder of psychology. • Wundt opened the first psychology lab in Germany in 1879.
The New Science (5) • G. Stanley Hall studied under Wundt. • Hall opened the first psych lab in the USA. • Hall established the American Psychological Association (APA).
Structuralism vs Functionalism: The First Debate in Psychology • The goal of (5)structuralism was to break consciousness down into its basic parts so it could be analyzed. Structuralists tended to work in labs, using techniques like introspection. • Functionalists (5 -6) believed that psychology should study the function of consciousness, not analyze its parts. Functionalists began studying intelligence, child development, sex roles, and other aspects of the real world.
Structuralism vs Functionalism: The First Debate in Psychology • The most prominent functionalist was William James (5 -6). • James was influenced by Charles Darwin’s work on natural selection & evolution. • James argued that consciousness serves a purpose, and that purpose or function should be investigated.
“The office” (clip)
Watson & Behaviorism (6 -7) • John B. Watson argued that consciousness couldn’t be studied, but behavior could. • Watson wanted psychology to be the “science of behavior. ”
Watson & Behaviorism focuses on relating a behavior (a response) to the environment (a stimulus).
Pavlov & Behaviorism Ivan Pavlov first demonstrated the strength of behaviorism by teaching dogs to salivate at the sound of a bell.
Nature or Nurture? • Behaviorism led to one of the fundamental questions in psychology: Is behavior determined by heredity (nature) or by environment & experience (nurture)? • How big a role does each play in determining a certain behavior?
Gestalt… oh, Fritzy. • Gestalt therapy is a phenomenologicalexistential therapy founded by Frederick (Fritz) and Laura Perls in the 1940 s. It teaches therapists and patients the phenomenological method of awareness, in which perceiving, feeling, and acting are distinguished from interpreting and reshuffling preexisting attitudes.
Gestalt… oh, Fritzy. • Explanations and interpretations are considered less reliable than what is directly perceived and felt. Patients and therapists in Gestalt therapy dialogue, that is, communicate their phenomenological perspectives. Differences in perspectives become the focus of experimentation and continued dialogue. The goal is for clients to become aware of what they are doing, how they are doing it, and how they can change themselves, and at the same time, to learn to accept and value themselves.
Gestalt… oh, Fritzy. • Gestalt therapy focuses more on process (what is happening) than content (what is being discussed). The emphasis is on what is being done, thought and felt at the moment rather than on what was, might be, could be, or should be.
Freud & Psychoanalyis (7) • Psychoanalytic theory was developed by Sigmund Freud. • Psychoanalysis is a therapy that focuses on unconscious conflicts, motives, and defenses.
Freud & Psychoanalysis(7) • The unconscious contains thoughts, memories, and desires of which we are not consciously aware but still influence behavior.
Freud & Psychoanalysis(7) Freud’s approach was controversial because 1) it is antithetical to behaviorism and 2) it often has an emphasis on sex, a topic which scientists were uncomfortable studying at the time.
Psychology & World War I • The First World War led to psychological tests being administered to soldiers. • Alfred Binet had developed the first practical intelligence test for educational use in France before the war.
Psychology & World War II • World War II led to an increase in clinical psychology as many veterans required mental health care. • By the 1950 s, clinical and counseling psychology had developed into a profession.
Skinner & Behaviorism (9) • BF Skinner argued that organisms tend to repeat responses that lead to positive outcomes and tend not to repeat responses that lead to negative outcomes. • In other words, all behavior can be understood and modified by examining the patterns of rewards and punishments.
Humanism (9) • Humanism developed as a reaction to behaviorism and psychoanalytic theory. • Humanism holds that humans are fundamentally different than animals. • Humanism argues that people are governed by a self concept and grow toward their potential. • Carl Rogers was one of the early humanists. He developed clientcentered therapy and the idea of the self-concept.
Cognition & Biology (10) • Also a reaction to behaviorism, cognitive psychologists argued that behavior can’t be understood without understanding the underlying mental processes that control behavior. • Biological psychologists insist that we also have to understand the physical structures and biochemistry that allow cognition.
Famous Cognitive Psychologists • Jean Piaget studied mental development in children.
Famous Cognitive Psychologists • Noam Chomsky studied how child acquired language.
Famous Biological Psychologists • Roger Sperry studied split brain patients to determine such things as cerebral hemispheric specialization.
Cultural Diversity & Psychology • Psychology has been primarily a western European and North American science. • In the last 25 years, more effort has gone into studying the behavior and mental processes of people from other cultures.
Buss & Evolutionary Psychology • The newest approach to psychology examines behavior and mental processes in terms of their adaptive value to the species. • Behaviors that help the species survive become dominant over many generations. • David Buss is the leading expert in this field.
PROJECT: Who are these people? David Buss Sigmund Freud Stanley Hall William James Jean Piaget Carl Rogers BF Skinner John Watson Wilhelm Wundt
Some Dates 1879 --Wundt’s first psych lab 1883 --Hall’s first US psych lab 1890 --James first major work 1892 --Hall founded the APA 1904 --Pavlov’s first experiments 1905 --Binet’s first intelligence test 1909 --Freud’s work gains recognition 1913 --Watson’s work gains recognition
Some More Dates 1914 --WWI leads to growth of intelligence testing 1916 --Lewis Terman developed the Stanford-Binet IQ test 1936 --Canadian Hans Selye develops the concept of stress 1942 --WW 2 lead to the growth of clinical and counseling psychology 1951 --Rogers’s work gains recognition 1953 --Skinner’s work gains recognition
Even More Fun Dates • 1950 s--Cognitive psychology gains recognition with Piaget, Chomsky, George Miller (short term memory) and others • 1961 --Sperry began his split brain research • 1980 --psychologists begin to consider cultural factors • 1990 s--Buss’s work gains recognition