PSYCH 100 Lecture Notes - Lecture 1: Color Vision, Heredity, Participant Observation

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What is psychology?
Science of behavior and mental processes with behavior
being any observable thing we do and mental processes
being our internal, subjective experiences (thoughts, etc.)
Scope
What kind of things do psychologists study, what
questions do they ask?
Color vision, states of consciousness, motivation
(sexual, sleep, etc.), helping behavior
(influences), phobias (fear vs. phobia),
development, personality, memory
Population
What organisms do we study?
Humans
Animals
Ethics, simpler systems
Method of inquiry
How do we study it?
Case studies/observations/surveys
Correlation
Experimentation
Issues in psychology
Consciousness vs. unconsciousness
Ex. A person means to say "you look great" but really
say "you look fat"
Free will vs. determinism
Ex. Can a person choose to get themselves out of a
depressive state?
Individual differences vs. universals
Ex. Is it OK to turn a trolley away from killing 5 people
on one track to a track where it kills only 1 person?
Nature vs. nurture
Based on environment and experiences
Ex. Does heredity play a major role in determining IQ?
Perspectives in Biology
Neuroscience
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How does the brain/biology affect behavior?
Do specific neurons begin to fire when we see
someone attractive?
Evolutionary
How does behavior/mental processes promote
survival?
Behavior genetics
Psychodynamic
How unconscious conflicts/drives determine
behavior?
Are we attracted to someone because they
are like our mom/dad?
Behavioral
How do our experiences and environment affect
behavior?
Cognitive
How does information processing affect thoughts/
behavior?
Socio-Cultural
How do behavior/thinking vary across situation/
cultures?
Research Methods
The scientific method
Hypothesis - a statement that can be tested for validity
Comes from…
Dissatisfaction with other's theories
New questions about research
Personal observation and curiosity
Research - test your hypothesis (experimentation with
multiple trials)
Types of Research
Descriptive research
When to use: describe what's going on, what is
the nature of the behavior
Description: What is the nature of the
phenomenon?
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Document Summary

), helping behavior (in uences), phobias (fear vs. phobia), development, personality, memory: population, what organisms do we study, humans, animals. Ethics, simpler systems: method of inquiry, how do we study it, case studies/observations/surveys, correlation, experimentation. A person means to say "you look great" but really say "you look fat: free will vs. determinism. Can a person choose to get themselves out of a depressive state: individual differences vs. universals. Is it ok to turn a trolley away from killing 5 people on one track to a track where it kills only 1 person: nature vs. nurture. Socio-cultural: how do behavior/thinking vary across situation/ cultures, research methods, the scienti c method, hypothesis - a statement that can be tested for validity, comes from , dissatisfaction with other"s theories, new questions about research. Examine one person in depth to understand human nature in general.

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