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Lecture 3

PSYA01-Lecture 3.doc

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Steve Joordens

Monday, September 9, 2013 PSYA01H3 - LECTURE 3 • FSGs are led by students who have taken the course already - they help current students do well in the course • First FSG meeting was today (Mon, Sept 9) • For questions regarding FSGs, there's a tab on the Blackboard Portal • Further details on mTuner, etcetra, will be posted as the project dates near • Today, the role of psychology as a science will be highlighted • Theme of the last lecture was - human behaviour is subject to natural laws, so we can experiment and analyze the human body to understand human behaviour • Psychology didn't exist at that time, but such materialistic ideas did exist • People began thinking of humans as machines that could be understood • When a country is powerful, it looks for interesting ways to use the money, and is open to new ideas and directions in many fields, such as in academia • The German government decided to learn something other than biology, physics, etcetra • Psychology was born in Germany as a result • Hermann von Helmholtz did a bunch of things that showed you could scientifically study things (people didn't believe this before) • He measured the speed of neural impulses, and he wanted to know how quick the information is transmitted through the body • It seemed impossible to measure since we react so quickly, and their measuring device was a stopwatch • Scientists say chemistry and physics is 'hard science' and psychology is 'soft science' • They mean that for chemistry and physics, you can see the experiment and it's open to subjection but in psychology you can't directly see and you have to be clever with how you measure • We are machine-like in some way in our ability to sense differences and we can study this in relat
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