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Lecture 1 [ Notes ].docx

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York University
PSYC 1010
Gerry Goldberg

The Evolution of Psychology (6-7) Wilhelm Wundt – Structuralism o Campaigned to make psychology an independent discipline o Founder of psychology o Believed psychology should be modelled after fields such as physics and chemistry o Primary focus of psychology was consciousness – awareness of immediate experience. o Work concerned sensation and perception in vision, hearing, and touch. William James – Functionalism o Functionalism based on a belief that psychology should investigate the function or purpose of consciousness o Consciousness consists of a continuous flow of thoughts o James wanted to understand the stream of consciousness o Interested in how people adapt their behaviour to the demands of the real world John B. Watson – Behaviourism o Behaviourism means that scientific psychology should study only observable behaviour o Watson believed that mental processes were not an appropriate thing to study because these are private events o Scientists could study anything people do or say but they cannot study the thought process Sigmund Freud – Psychoanalysis and the unconsciousness o Unconsciousness has thoughts, memories, and desires that are below the conscious awareness but are still a great influence on behaviour o Psychological disturbances are mainly caused by personal conflicts existing in the unconscious level o Freud said that people are not masters of their own mind and behaviour is greatly influenced on how people cope with their sexual urges o Freud studied personality, motivation, and abnormal behaviour B.F. Skinner – Behaviourism o Private events are much more difficult to study o His science of behaviour is based on public observable events o Environmental factors mould behaviour o Skinner said that organisms tend to repeat responses that lead to positive outcomes, and not negative o People are controlled by their environment, not themselves Carl Rogers, Abraham Maslow – Humanists Revolt o Humanism is a theoretical orientation that emphasizes the unique qualities of humans o Humanists take an optimistic view of human nature o They say that because humans are very different from animals, experimenting on animals has little relevance to understanding human behaviour o Rogers and Maslow argued that human behaviour is governed by each individual’s sense of self
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