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PSYC 1010
Jennifer Steeves

Chapter One: Evolution of Psychology Philosophy+Physiology= Psychology Psychology is the science of behavior (actions of a person or animal) and the mind (thoughts, feelings, sensations, perceptions, memories, dreams, and motives) • Classical Greek philosophers Socrates and Aristotle considered issues such as mind-body and the nature of memory • Later philosophers such as Descartes, Hume and Mill speculated on the mind and emotions • Psychologists such as Gall, Broca and Muller, demonstrate the value of an empirical approach • Nativism- inborn knowledge • Empiricism- knowledge gained through experience • The Development of Psychology: From Speculation to Science • Prior to 1879- Physiology and philosophy scholars study questions about the mind • Wilhelm Wundt established the first lab for research psychology at the University of Leipzig, Germany in 1879… campaigned to make psychology an independent discipline – is considered the founder of psychology • The Battle of the Schools, Structuralism vs. Functionalism • Structuralism vs. Functionalism: are the two intellectual schools of thought regarding the science of psychology • Structuralism- Led by Edward Titchener taught for decades at Cornell Uni • Structuralism focused on analyzing consciousness into basic elements • To examine the contents of consciousness, the structuralists depended on introspection: the careful systematic observations of ones own conscious experience • Functionalism: based on the belief that psychology should investigate the function or purpose of consciousness rather than structure • Led to investigation of mental testing, developmental patterns, sex differences • May have attracted the first women into the field of psychology • Margaret Floy Washburn the first woman in the USA to receive a PH.D in psychology • Leta Hollingworth studied children’s intelligence and debunked some of the theories at the time that claimed women were inferior to men. Became the first women to serve as president of the American Psychology Association • Behavioursim: Redefining Psychology • Behaviourism: a theoretical orientation based on the premise that scientific psychology should study only observable behavior founded by John Watson • Behaviour: overt or observable responses or activities –Radical reorientation of psychology as a science of observable behavior –Study of consciousness abandoned • Watson claimed that psychologists could study anything that people do or say. They could not study scientifically the thoughts, wishes, and feelings that might accompany these observable behaviours. • Stimulus: Any detectable input from the environment • Focus on stimulus- response relationships (contributed to the rise of animal research in psychology • Watson argued that behavior is governed by the environment, not so much heredity (nature vs. nurture) • Nature vs. Nurture: whether behavior is determined mainly by genetic inheritance (nature) or by environment and experience (nurture) • Behaviourist school of thought emphasized the environment (nurture) • Sigmund Freud and the Concept of the Unconscious Mind • Sigmund Freud (1856-1939)- Austria. Physician who early in career wanted to achieve fame by making an important discovery • Freud’s approach to psychology stemmed from his effort treating mental disorders • Psychoanalysis: Innovative procedure created by Freud treating people troubled by psychological problems such as irrational fears, obsessions, and anxieties • Unconscious: contains thoughts memories and desires that are well below the surface of conscious awareness but exerts a great influence on behavior • Concluded that psychological disturbances are largely caused by personal conflicts existing at an unconscious level • Psychoanalytic Theory: attempts to explain personality, motivation, and mental disorders by focusing on unconscious determinants of behavior • Proposed behavior is influenced greatly by how people cope with their sexual urges • Behaviourism Revisited: B.F Skinner • B.F Skinner (1904-1990) emerged as a central figure in behaviourism and history of psychology • Radical Behaviourism: Skinners system based on his own philosophy that represented a departure from earlier forms of behavioursim and neo behaviourism • Believed environmental factors determined behavior • Responses that lead to positive outcomes are repeated • Responses that lead to negative outcomes are not repeated • Believed behavior is determined in predictable ways by lawful principles, if you believe that your actions are a result of conscious decisions, you are wrong • People are controlled by their environment, not themselves (believes nature supersedes nurture) • The 1950s: Opposition to Psychoanalytic Theory and Behaviour • Charges that both behaviourism and functionalism were dehumanizing • Diverse opposition groups got together forming a loose alliance • Humanism: a theoretical orientation that emphasizes the unique qualities of humans, especially their freedom and potential for personal growth, people have a basic need to evolve as human beings and fulfill their potential • Led by Abraham Maslow and Carl Rogers • Putting the Psych back in Psychology: The Return of Cognition • Cognition: Mental process involved in acquiring knowledge • The dominance of behaviourist thought significantly decreased with the advent of cognitive psychology • 1950s and 1960s: Piaget, Chomsky, and Simon • Application of scientific methods to study internal mental events • Cognitive psychology: the new dominant perspective • Applied Psychology: the branch of psychology concerned with everyday, practical problems • Clinical Psychology: the branch of psychology concerned with the diagnosis and treatment of psychological problems and disorders • Biological Psychology: The Biological Basis of Behaviour • Biological Perspective: Behaviour explained in terms of physiological processes (neuroscience) • James Olds (1956): Electrical stimulation of the brain evokes emotional responses in animals • Roger Sperry (1981): Left and right brain specialization • Donald Hebb: cell assemblies describe neural networks • Psychology Today: • Psychology is the science that studies behavior and the physiological and cognitive processes that underlie it, and it is the profession that applies the accumulated knowledge of this science to practical problems • Research: Seven Major areas: Personality, psychometrics, social, cognitive, physiological, developmental and experimental • Applied Psychology: Four Major areas: Clinical, counseling, educational and school, and industrial organization Chapter 2 The Research Enterprise in Psychology • Outline: 1) Research Methods: Descriptive Research, Correlation Research, Experimental Research. 2) Statistics: Descriptive Statistics, Inferential Statistics 3) Common Flaws in Research: Sampling Bias, Placebo effects, Distortions in self report data, experimenter bias 4) Ethical Issues • Research Methods: Descriptive/ Correlation Research • Naturalistic observation: careful systematic observation, but no intervention with subjects • Case Study: In depth investigation of single participant, typically involving data from many sources • Survey: Questionnaires and interviews are used to gather information about specific aspects of participants behavior • Correlation Research: • Assess the relationships between variables ex; playing violent video games  aggressive play • Can assess these relationships in everyday life events ex; playing violent video games  aggressive play • Cannot be used to draw inferences about the casual relationships between variables ex; playing violent video games  aggressive play • Correlation: Exists when two variables are related to each other • Types of Correlation: Positive: Variables co vary in the same direction Negative: Variables co vary in the opposite direction • Correlation Coefficient: Numerical index of degree of relationship between two variables • Strength: The closer the correlation to either -1.00 or +1.00, the stronger the relationship • Prediction: The stronger the correlation the better on can predict • Causation is not equivalent to correlation • Experimental Research • Experimental Research is a method in which the investigator manipulates a variable (x) under carefully controlled conditions and observes whether any changes occur in a second variable (y) as a result. We want to find out how x affects y • Independent Variable: is a condition or event manipulated by the experimenter • Dependent Variable: Aspect of behavior that is thought to depend on manipulations of the independent variable • Control Group: Similar subjects who do not receive treatment given to experimental group • Extraneous variable: Factors besides Independent Variables that might affect Dependent Variables, hence they much be controlled • Ex; Viewing Violence (Independent Variable) Aggressive Behaviour (Dependent Variable) • Advantages and Disadvantages of Experimental Research: • Advantage: permits conclusions about cause and effect relationships between variables (no other research method can duplicate this strength of the experiment) • Disadvantage: Experiments are often artificial since experiments require control over proceedings, researchers must often conduct simple, contrived situations to test their hypotheses experimentally • When experiments are highly artificial, doubts arise about the applicability of the findings to everyday behavior outside the laboratory • Field Experiments: research studies that use settings that are very much like real life, the research might occur in the context of everyday life and events. The researcher may sacrifice control over extraneous variables for greater generalizability • Naturalistic Observation: Careful, usually prolonged observation of behavior without direct intervention. Advantages: minimizes artificiality; can be good place to start when little is known about the phenomena under study. Disadvantages: Often difficult to remain unobtrusive; cant explain why certain patterns of behavior were observed • Case Studies: In depth investigation of a single participant using direct interview, observation, and other data collection techniques. Advantages: Well suited for study of certain phenomena: can provide compelling illustrations to support a theory. Disadvantages: subjectivity makes it east to see what one expects to see based on ones theoretical slant, clinical samples often unrepresentative. • Surveys: Use of questionnaires of interviews to gather info about specific aspects of participant’s behavior. Advantages: can gather data on difficult to observe aspects of behavior, easy to collect data from large samples. Disadvantages: self report data often unreliable, due to intentional deception, social desirability bias, response sets, memory lapses, and wishful thinking • Statistics: • Basic descriptive statistics: • Frequency polygons are graphs used to present data from a frequency distribution. The normal distribution or bell shaped cure, is one common type of distribution • Three measures of central tendency are the: Median: the score that falls exactly in the center of a distribution scores Mean: arithmetic average of the scores in a distribution (add all scores together and divide by number of scores) • Mode: the most frequent score in a distribution • The mean is most useful index of central tendency, but the median may be better if the mean is inflated by a few extreme scores ex; (1, 22, 24, 24, 23, 27, 23, 25, 56) • Variability refers to how much scores vary from each other and the mean • The standard deviati
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