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Psychology Module 1
What is psychology? • Psychology – The scientific study of behavior and mental processes • Scientific research methods are used to answer questions about peoples behavior • Psychologists study both observable, and unobservable elements to determine why people act the way they do
When did Psychology begin? • People have always been trying to understand other peoples behaviors • Perspective- collection of ideas that grows into a movement.
Better question: When did modern psychology begin? • Modern Psychology – the last 125 years of study • German philosopher Wilhelm Wundt is known as the “Father” of Psychology • In 1879, Wundt devoted his laboratory to psychological experiments (in Germany)
Structuralism • E. B. (Edward Bradford) Titchener, was a student of Wundt • Titchener introduced Structuralism • Structuralism – theory that analyzed the basic elements of thoughts and sensations to determine the structure of conscience experience • Structuralism would be a building block for other psychological systems
Gestalt Psychology • Gestalt Psychology – Psychological perspective that emphasized our tendency to integrate pieces of information into meaningful wholes • Taking all the pieces and putting it into a whole idea • Gestalt in German means “whole”
What do you see?
What do you see here?
Functionalism • Functionalism – Theory that emphasized the functions of consciousness and the ways consciousness helps people adapt to their environment • William James started functionalism • He was the first American Psychologist
Sigmund Freud • Austrian Physician • Psychoanalysis • Freud’s theory differed from others in two ways 1. It focused on abnormal behavior, attributed to unconscious drives and conflicts, stemming from childhood 2. It relied on personal observations, and not controlled lab experiments
Freud Cont’d • Freud’s work was not scientific because it was based on self reported reflections, not scientific methods to gather research • Freud died in 1939 • The idea that our unconscious thoughts, inner conflicts, and childhood experiences affect our behavior and personality, is still accepted by some
John B. Watson • Started Behaviorism • Focused solely on observable and objectively describable acts • Today, behaviorism focuses on learning through rewards and observation
Maslow & Rogers • Humanistic psychologists who emphasized the conscious experience • Said humans have free will in their decision making and are not controlled by series of rewards
Piaget • Swiss psychologist • Known for his work about how children develop their thinking abilities
New Areas of Psychology Behavior Genetics – thought that focuses on how much our genes and our environment influence our individual differences This is a combination of behaviorism and genetics. Is there a gene that specifically control certain actions. What is inherited? Evolutionary Psychology – combines biological, and social aspects while studying behaviors that helped our ancestors provide
New Areas Positive Psychology – Movement that focuses on the study of optimal human functioning and the factors that allow individuals and communities to thrive. Suggest focusing on improving the positive things in life rather than repair the worst thing.
Careers in Psychology Clinical and Counseling Psychologists represent more than half of all psychologists They will diagnose and treat people with disorders. Academic Psychologists work at universities doing research Basic Research – Science aiming to increase the scientific knowledge base Applied Research – Scientific study aiming to solve practical problems
Careers in Psychology cont’d -Industrial and organizational psychologists help businesses and companies run more efficiently and promote a better work environment. -Lots of companies today either have full-time psychologists or hire consultants to come in and assess their workplace. About 4% of people become school psychologists.
When it doubt, keep it simple