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PSY 102 Lecture 2.docx

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Ryerson University
PSY 102
Scott Clark

Psychology as Science: Research Methods and Ethics PSY 102: Lecture 2 *For next week: Read Pages 120-128 of Chapter 3 Previously:  Psychologists study mind, brain, and behaviour  Psychology as diver field  Five challenges to psychology  Six principles of Critical Thinking Psychology: A Brief History “Psychology has a short history but a long past” –Hermann Ebbinghaus  Psychology has roots in philosophy and physiology  What makes PSY distinct from physio or phil? o Focus on whole person, not just the physical anatomy o Focus on connections between brain and behaviour What are the Origins of Knowledge?  Empiricism (Aristotle, John Locke) o “Tabula Rasa”  we are born „empty‟, knowledge is gained via experience, we know things because we have learned them  Ex: We don‟t know how to tie shoes, we know it cause we learned it  Nativism (Darwin‟s influence) o All Knowledge DOES NOT come from experience, some knowledge is inborn, genes & natural selection, we are born with certain traits/abilities  Ex: Babies have inborn knowledge, cry and cling to caregiver, enhancing survival. (We have survival instincts/reflexes)  Nature-Nurture “Debate” o Nativist-Empiricist o Genes and environment both play a role o The extent to which each contributes to particular behavioural phenomena is a major question…  Ex: Schizophrenia requires environmental stress for symptoms to trigger not genetics. Genetics play a small role in this case o Genes and environment can also interact to produce behaviour  Ex: Child may have genetic tendency toward aggressive behaviour, but as they get older, they select similar peers and environments Free Will: A Powerful Illusion?  To what extent are our behaviours caused by o Factors outside our control? o Our own volitions  As humans, we like to believe that when we do something, we have freely chosen to do it  But are we really aware of the external (and internal) factors pulling/pushing our behaviour? Foundations of Modern Psychology Two Schools of Thought: Structuralism vs. Functionalism Wilhelm Wundt  Established first experiment psychology lab: 1879*, Germany  Studied physiology and was a professor of philosophy (roots of psych)  *Psychology started in 1879 o The mind can be studied scientifically o Focused on consciousness o “Structuralism”  Conscious experience can be broken down into basic elements  Elements: sensations (visuals, auditory, etc.)  Ex: Banana – what‟s it like to eat?  Introspection o Self-observation: „seeing‟ mental processes in immediate experience Functionalism  North American movement o William James (Similar to Wilhelm Wundt, different belief) o Studied Medicine, then taught philosophy. Wrote first psychology o First book: Took 12 years, 1000+pages. Should‟ve taken 2 years.  Focused on the function of immediate experience, rather than only the content  Understanding purpose is essential (Darwin‟s influence)  Stream of Consciousness: Consciousness is constantly changing and is always on the go/flow Perspectives that Shape our Current Thinking  1. Psychodynamic/Psychoanalytic, 2. Behaviourist, 3. Cognitive, 4. Humanist, 5. Biological, 6. Socio-Cultural (Not all talked about in the book) 1. Psychoanalytic/Psychodynamic (early 1900‟s)  Sigmund Freud  Cornerstones o The impact of childhood experiences on adult self o The “Unconscious”  Part of the mind that is not accessible in everyday life  Unconscious motives (ex: below awareness) influence ou
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