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PSYCH TEST 1 - Chapter 1 Study Notes

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York University
PSYC 1010
Gerry Goldberg

Psych 1010 - Fall 2013 - Carly Rosenblatt Chapter 1 - Evolution of Psychology - Greek roots: psyche (soul), logos (subject of study) - Philosophy and physiology influenced early psychology - shared an interest in mysteries of the mind - Socrates, Plato, Aristotle all debated separation of mind/body and whether knowledge is inborn (nativism) or gained with experience (empiricism) - Aristotle’s memory theory still foundational to contemporary memory theories (3 principles: similarity, contrast, contiguity) - Descartes (philosophy) argued that mind and body are different - mind (soul) immaterial/ Godly, bodily functions (memory, dreaming, emotions) properties of the body and able to be understood in terms of nature Wilhelm Wundt: - made psychology an independent discipline (rather than a branch of philosophy/physiology) - Huge impact on development of psychology - Time/place was right for the appeal to create this new discipline: German universities had the resources to expand for new disciplines, proposals well received by academic community - Established first formal psychology laboratory in 1897 in Leipzig, Germany (psychology’s “date of birth”) - Defined psych: scientific study of consciousness (awareness of immediate experience) - Kept psych focused on the mind/mental processes, while demanding methods used be as scientific as those of chemists/physicists - In North America, Wundt’s scholars created new research labs that developed psych even further (late 19th century) - G. Stanley Hall: studied under Wundt, established first US research lab, launched first US psych journal, established American Psychological Associated (APA) + became its president Structuralism vs Functionalism: - the field’s first great intellectual battle between schools of thought: structuralism and functionalism - Advocates for each side saw themselves as fighting for the definition/direction of psych Structuralism: - The notion that psych should analyze consciousness into its basic elements and investigate how these elements are related - studied fundamental components of consciousness (sensations, feelings, images, etc.) - Edward Titchener - father of structuralism, studied under Wundt, brought his own version to Wundt’s psych to the US, Englishman turned US prof - Most structuralist work explored sensation and vision/hearing/touch perception - Depended on a method on introspection: - careful, systemic self-observation of one’s own conscious experience - trained subjects to be more objective/aware, after which they were exposed to various conditions (auditory tones, optical illusions, etc.) and had to analyze their experience - Had limitations that contributed to structuralism’s demise in psych - if a phenomenon is documented solely on an individual’s reflection, there is no independent objective evaluation of that claim Psych 1010 - Fall 2013 - Carly Rosenblatt - Structuralism mostly researched in a laboratory Functionalism: - The notion that psych should investigate the function/purpose of consciousness, rather than the structure - William James- father of fundamentalism, American scholar, formally a doctor (not intellectually challenging enough), wrote “Principles of Psychology” (most influential text in history of psych), his thinking illustrated how psych is deeply embedded in cultural/intellectual influences - Natural selection (heritable characteristics that provide survival/reproductive advantage are more likely to be passed on and thus become “selected” over time) - James applied this theory that typical characteristics of a species must serve some purpose to humans - since consciousness is obviously an important part of our species, psych should investigate the functions rather than structure of consciousness - James argued that structuralism missed the real nature of consciousness - continuous flow of thoughts (structuralists were analyzing elements of consciousness, which were static points in that flow), while functionalism aimed to understand the flow itself - named the stream of consciousness - Studied outside of lab - how people adapt their behaviour to the demands of the real world - Practical slant allowed new subjects to be introduced to psych - mental testing, child development, education effectiveness, behaviour diffs between sexes (instead of focusing merely on sensation and perception) - These new topics attracted women into field of psych **important - Margaret Floy Washburn (first woman in US to receive Ph.D in psych, wrote “The Animal Mind” which led to behaviourism) - Leta Hollingworth (studied child intelligence, debunked theories of women being “inferior” to men) - Mary Whiton Calkins (studied with William James, first woman president of APA) Functionalism “won” the battle (although both sides faded away) - functionalism fostered the development of behaviourism and applied psych Six contemporary theoretical perspectives in psych (chart on pg. 12): 1. Behavioural (Watson, Pavlov, Skinner) - 1913+ - environment affects animal behaviour, only observable events can be studied scientifically (S-R relationships) 2. Psychoanalytic (Freud, Jung, Adler) - 1900+ - unconscious motives/childhood experiences affect personality/mental disorders and behaviour 3. Humanistic (Rogers, Maslow) - 1950s+ - humans are free, rational beings with potential for personal growth, uniquely diff from animals 4. Cognitive (Piaget, Chomsky, Simon) - 1950s+ - human behaviour explained using thoughts, mental processes (how people acquire/store/process info) 5. Biological (Olds, Sperry, Hubel, Wiesel) - 1950s+ - organism’s fxn explained in terms of physiology (bodily structures/biochem processes that underlie behaviour) 6. Evolutionary (Buss, Daly, Wilson, Cosmides, Tooby) - 1980s+ - evolution creates behavioural patterns that have evolved to solve adaptive problems, natural selection favors behaviours that enhance reproductive success Psych 1010 - Fall 2013 - Carly Rosenblatt Behavioural (1913+) - Behaviourism: theoretical orientation based on the premise that scientific psych should study only observable behaviour - abandon study of consciousness, focus exclusively on observable behaviours - John B. Watson - To Watson, the power of the scientific method rested on verifiability - scientific claims can always be verified/disproved by further observations, however the things being studied must be able to be observed objectively - Mental processes are private events - not a subject of scientific study because they cannot be seen/touched - If psych were to be a science, would have to give up consciousness as its subject matter and become the science of behaviour - behaviour: any overt (observable) response/activity by an organism - Scientists could study anything people do/say (behaviours), but not the thoughts/feelings that accompany these observable behaviours - Watson also argued nurture instead of nature - each person in made, not born (downplayed importance of heredity, believed behavior is governed by environment) - Behaviourists viewed psych as a way to relate overt behaviours (responses) to observable events (stimuli - detectable input from environment) - so behaviourism sometimes called stimulus-response (S-R) psych - Even before Watson’s case for behaviourism, Ivan Pavlov’s experiments (dogs could be trained to salivate before a meal if an auditory tone was sounded) paved the way for further experiments in how S-R bonds are formed - Behaviourism contributed to the rise of animal research in psych - no longer needed to worry about human consciousness, and animals made better subjects since more control could be exerted over their actions/past life - aka psych switched from the study of the mind to the study of simple S-R bonds in lab animals Opposition for behaviourism: Gestalt psychology (from Germany) - primarily concerned with perception - Argued that psych should study conscious experience instead of behaviour Watson - first “pop” psychologist, became the public face of the discipline that he was banished from (resigned after divorce scandal, went into marketing) B.F. Skinner - became most famous scientist of his time after leaving writing and getting into psych (face of psychology) - Developed radical behaviourism from Pavlov’s reflex work and Watson’s behaviourism - diff from prior behaviourism + neo-behaviourism - Acknowledged internal mental events, redefined them as private events that do not explain behaviour - Believed all behaviour fully governed by external stimuli (like Watson) - psych could understand and predict behaviour without biological/physiological explanations (although he acknowledged that behaviour is also affected by biology) Psych 1010 - Fall 2013 - Carly Rosenblatt - Fundamental behavioural principle (by Skinner): responses with + outcomes repeated by organisms and - outcomes not repeated (apply control over animal behaviour by manipulating response outcomes - could even train animals into unnatural behaviours) - People controlled by environment, not themselves - free will is an illusion - Very controversial/ideas misunderstood (household name, appeared in many media outlets) - free will and nature/nurture debate - Resulted in behaviourism flourishing as dominant school of thought during the 50s and 60s Psychoanalytic (1900+) Another alternate conception: unconscious mental processes (Sigmund Freud, from Austria) - one of the most controversial intellectual figures of modern times - Tried to treat mental disorders from psychoanalysis - fears, obsessions, anxieties - Believed in the existence of the unconscious: thoughts/memories/desires that are well below the surface of conscious awareness but still greatly influence behaviour - His psychoanalytic theory: explains personality/motivation/mental disorders by focusing on unconscious determinants of behavior - Not entirely new concept, but very diff from belief that people are fully aware of the forces governing their behaviour - Behaviour is strongly influenced by how people cope with sexual urges (even more scandalous back in the early 1900s) - Won acceptance in medicine via Carl Jung + Alfred Adler - Psychoanalytic theory - widely known by 1920, still met with resistance in psychology (conflicted with the spirit of the times - more focus on behaviour, less on consciousness and especially unconsciousness) - By 1940s, so widespread it forced psychologists to apply scientific methods to Freud’s topics: personality, motivation, abnormal behaviour/therapy (allowed more to see merit in the ideas) - survived to influence mainstream modern psychology Humanism (1950s+) - by 50s, behaviourism/psychoanalytic theory most influential schools of thought in psychology - however, unappealing and dehumanizing (psychoanalytic theory-behaviour dominated by primitive sexual urges, behaviourism-simple animal behaviour) - humanism: emphasizes unique qualities of humans, especially freedom/potential personal growth - Optimistic view of human nature - not pawns of animal heritage/environment, animal research has little human relevance - Carl Rogers and Abraham Maslow (50s): human behaviour governed by individual’s sense of self/self-concept (which animals lack), human behaviour driven by personal growth and
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