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The Scope of Psychology

The Scope of Psychology

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The Scope of Psychology

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  1. The Scope of Psychology Psychology can be defined as the scientific study of behaviorandmental processes. Includes the application of the science to human problems

  2. Psychology as a science: It is systematized knowledge that is gathered by carefully observing and measuring events. • Conduct experiments (repeated) and collect data in quantitative measurements. Psychology applied to real-life

  3. Historical Origins of Psychology • Ancient Greeks- “What is consciousness? Are people inherently rational?” • Nature-Nurture Debate- “Whether human capabilities are inborn or acquired through experience?”

  4. Beginning of Scientific psychology • In late 19th Century, William Wundt set up the first laboratory and used Introspection method. • Introspection refers to observing and recording the nature of one’s own perception, thoughts and feelings. • Reactions to Introspection: Birth of early school of Psychology Structuralism, Functionalism, Behaviorism, Gestalt Psychology and Psychoanalysis

  5. Structuralism and Functionalism Structuralism • Leading proponent- E. B. Titchner • Analysis of mental structures- units that make up the mind units of sensation, image and emotion • Purely analytical in nature • William James- Analyzing the elements of consciousness was less important than understanding its fluid, personal nature.

  6. Functionalism • John Dewey, Harvey Carr at the University of Chicago • “What mind and behaviour do” • How mind works to enable an organism to adapt to and function in its environment

  7. Behaviorism • By 1920, Structuralism and Functionalism were replaced by Behaviorism, Gestalt Psychology & Psychoanalysis. • J.B Watson-Founder replaced the mind and restricted to the study of behaviour • Watson’s argument- All behavior is a result of conditioning and the environment shapes behavior by reinforcing specific habits. • Denied the existence of inborn or innate behavioural tendencies. • Held that no specific differences between human and animal behaviour • Behaviorists discussed psychological phenomenon in terms of stimulus and responses, giving rise to the term stimulus-response (S-R) psychology.

  8. Gestalt Psychology • Gestalt- German word meaning “form” or “configuration” • Max Wertheimer, Kurt Koffka, Wolfgang Kohler- Gestalt Psychologists primary interest was perception they believed that perceptual experiences depend on the patterns formed by stimulus and on the organization of experience. • Whole pattern of sensory activity and the relationships and organizations within this pattern. • The whole is different from the sum of its parts because of the relationships between the parts.

  9. Psychoanalysis • A theory of personality and method of psychotherapy originated by Sigmund Freud. • Concept of unconsciousness, thoughts, attitudes, impulses etc that we are unaware of. • Repressed Unconscious wishes and desires expressed in Dreams, slips of tongue & physical mannerism. • Method of Free Association

  10. Perspectives within Psychology Cognitive Perspective Biological Perspective Behavioral Perspective Psychoanalytical Perspective Subjectivist Perspective

  11. Biological Perspective: Seeks to specify neurological processes that underlie behavior and mental processes. • Behavioral Perspective: Focus on observable stimuli and regards nearly all behavior as a result of conditioning & responses. • Cognitive Perspective: Use the analogy between mind and computer, not based on introspection but it assumes that • Only by studying mental processes can we fully understand what organism do. • Study mental processes in an objective fashion by focusing on objective behavior.

  12. Psychoanalytic Perspective: Behavior stems from unconscious processes, meanings, beliefs, fears & desires that a person is unaware of, but that nonetheless influences behavior. • The Developmental Perspective: Concerned with characteristic changes in people as they grow. • The Humanistic Perspective: Emphasizes one’s own sense of self. • Subjectivist Perspective: Each individual has their own definition of the situation, which is expected to vary according to their culture, personal history & current motivational states. • Relationship between Biological and Psychological Perspective: Biological- Reductionism, involve reducing psychological notions to biological ones, Which is not always accepted.

  13. Concept Review Table

  14. Major Subfields of Psychology • Biological Psychology- relationship between biological process and behavior • Experimental Psychology- conduct research from a behaviorist or cognitive perspective and use experimental methods to study how people react to sensory stimuli and perceive the world. • Developmental Psychology- Human development factors that shape behavior from birth to old age. • Socio & Personality- How people perceive & interpret their social world • Personality Psychology- study the thoughts, emotions & behaviors that define an individualistic personal style of interacting with the world.

  15. Clinical & Counseling Psychology- Apply psychological principles to the diagnosis & treatment of emotional & behavioral problems. Counseling- Often deal with less serious problems. • School Psychology- Work with children to evaluate learning & Emotional problems. • Educational Psychology- Specialization in learning and teaching. • Organizational and Engineering Psychology- Selecting people who are most suitable for a particular jobs.

  16. How Psychological research is done? • Generating Hypothesis • Experiments • Variable – Independent Variable Dependent Variable • Experimental and Control Group • Random Assignments- each participants have an equal probability of being placed in any group. • Measurement • Correlation-Tests, Correlation and Causation • Observation- Direct Observation Survey Method Case Histories