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Introduction and History of Psychology

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  1. Introduction and History of Psychology Chapter 1

  2. History of Psychology • What Is Psychology – and What Is It Not? • Psychology is a broad field, with many specialties, but fundamentally, psychology is the science of behavior and mental processes. • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uuvGh_n3I_M

  3. History of Psychology • What Is Psychology – and What Is It Not? • Psychology : • The scientific study of behavior and mental processes • Psychology is not: • Mere speculation about human nature • A body of folk wisdom about people that “everybody knows” to be true

  4. What Is Psychology – and What Is It Not? • Psychology disputes unfounded claims from pseudo psychology. • Horoscopes, “false” rediscovered memories. • Pseudo psychology – Erroneous assertions of practices set forth as being scientific psychology.

  5. Historical Roots • What are Psychology’s historical roots?

  6. Historical Approaches • Structuralism: focused on revealing the most basic “structures” of the mind. • Mid 1800’s: Charles Darwin • He suggested a biological kinship btw humans and animals. • Chemistry: Whilem Wundt • Scientist had noticed patterns in properties of the chemical elements that led them to develop the periodic table • Wundt wondered could a similar process be applied to simplify our understanding of the mid?

  7. Wilhem Wundt • 1879 Wundt established the first institute for psychological research at the University of Leipzig. • Wundt and his students began to conduct studies on what they supposed to be the “elements” of consciousness. • Sensation and perception, memory, emotion, etc. • Introspection: process of reporting on one’s own conscious mental experience.

  8. Historical Approaches • Functionalism: Focus on Function • William James: • Critic of Wundt • Argued that Psychology should include the function of Consciousness, not just the structure. • “Stream of Consciousness” as a mental process that had no static structure, but was continually flowing, changing, and interacting with the environment. • Adapting

  9. Historical Approaches • Gestalt Psychology: Focus on the WHOLE instead of the parts. • Opposite of structuralism. • Gestalt Psychologists were interested in how we construct “perceptual wholes”. • Such as our perception of a face. • Relied on introspection.

  10. Historical Approaches • Behaviorism: Eliminate the mind and focus on BEHAVIOR • John B. Watson*: • Argued that a true and objective science of psychology should deal solely with observable events: • Stimuli from the environment and the organism’s response. • Behaviorism should be the science of BEHAVIOR not the mind. • Cared nothing about what people were thinking, instead they wanted to know how people would act.

  11. Historical Approaches • Psychoanalysis: Focus on the UNCONSCIOUS mind. • Sigmund Freud * • Asserted that mental disorders arise from conflicts in the unconscious mind. • Psychoanalytic: method of treating mental disorders. • *Still a force today

  12. Modern Approaches • Nine main perspectives characterize modern psychology: • Biological • Developmental • Cognitive • Psychodynamic • Humanistic • Behavioral • Socio-cultural • Evolutionary • Trait

  13. Biological Perspective • View of Human Nature: • We are complex systems that respond to hereditary and environmental influences. • What Determines Behavior: • Neural structures, biochemistry, and inborn responses to external cues. • Our physical makeup and the operation of our brain influences our personality and behavior. • What does this mean? Use your own words.

  14. Developmental Perspective • View of Human Nature: • We undergo predictable patterns of change throughout our lives. • Ex: Childhood, adolescence, adulthood. • What Determines Behavior: • Interaction between heredity and environment. • Ex: Nature v. Nurture • Describe this perspective in your own words.

  15. Cognitive Perspective • View of Human Nature: • People are information-processing systems. • mental processes like sensation, perception, learning, memory, and language, all influence behavior. • What Determines Behavior: • Mental interpretation of our experience. • Describe this perspective in your own words.

  16. Psychodynamic Perspective • View of Human Nature: • We are driven by dark forces of the unconscious. • FREUD! (unconscious, sexual, desires influence behavior) • What Determines Behavior: • Unconscious needs, conflicts, repressed memories, and childhood experiences. • Emphasizes the treatment of mental disorders over scientific research. • Describe this approach in your OWN words.

  17. Humanistic Perspective • View of Human Nature: • Emphasizes human growth and potential. • Abraham Maslow, Carl Rogers • Perfect Flower • What Determines Behavior: • The influence of self-concept, perceptions, and interpersonal relationships, and on need for personal growth. • Describe this perspective in your OWN words.

  18. Behavioral Perspective • View of Human Nature: • Behavior is primarily shaped by learning. We should look for the causes of behavior in our environment rather than in the biology of our mind. • John B. Watson, B.F. Skinner • What Determines Behavior: • Stimulus cues and our history of rewards and punishments. • Study the person from the outside only, focusing only on what they can directly observe. • Describe this perspective in your OWN words.

  19. Sociocultural Perspective • View of Human Nature: • People are social animals, so human behavior must be interpreted in social context. • What Determines Behavior: • Cultures, social norms and expectations, social learning. • How are social influences different across cultures? Give examples! • Describe in your OWN words!

  20. Evolutionary/Sociobiological Perspective • View of Human Nature: • Behavior is developed and adapted over time. • Charles Darwin • What Determines Behavior: • Natural selection, survival of the fittest. • What does this mean? • Describe in your OWN words!

  21. Trait Perspective • View of Human Nature: • Individual differences result from differences in our underlying patterns of stable characteristics. • Examples: Laid back, moody, what else? • What Determines Behavior: • Each person’s unique combination of traits. • Describe in YOUR own words.

  22. Think, Pair, and Share • Which approach do you like or agree with most, why? • Which approach do you dislike the most? Why?