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Chapter 1: The History of
Unit 1 Psychology’s History and
Define psychology-science of behavior and mental
• Nature v. Nurture
• Wilhelm Wundt-father of Psych-est. psy as
independent dicipline -first psych lab Germany
• Structuralism-Edward Titchener/introspection
(response to own sensations)
• Functionalism-William James (wrote The Principles
of Psychology)
• Mary Calkins-1st women president of APA 1905
• Margaret Floy Washburn -first women Ph.D-2nd
APA president 1921
Psychological Approaches/Perspectives
• Biological/Biomedical psychology
Evolutionary psychology
Psychodynamic psychology
Behavioral psychology
Cognitive psychology
Humanistic psychology
Social-cultural psychology
Unit 1- Eight Perspectives
1. Psychoanalytic-unconscious childhood experiences
2. Behavioral-rewards (reinforcements) and
punishments impact on behavior/learning/ Ivan Pavlov
(Classical Cond.), John Watson (-classical conditioning,
father of behaviorism), BF Skinner (operant conditioning)
3. Biological/biomedical-brain chemistry/body systems
4. Evolutionary-reproduction/survival (Darwin)
5. Humanistic-innate potential for growth-Maslow &
6. Socio-cultural/Social Learning/Socio Culturalimitation of models/one’s culture (Bandura)
7. Bio/psycho/social-combination of perspectives
8. Cognitive-problem solving. language; interpretation of
situations, irrational beliefs and ideas
Gestalt Psychology= whole of anything (human
mind/behaviors) is greater than its individual parts/the
Unit 1 Psychology
Experimental psychology
Clinical psychology
Counseling psychology
Developmental psychology
Personality psychology
Industrial/Organizational psychology
Educational/school psychology
Social psychology
Psychometrics-tests to measure
psychological variables (intelligence, aptitude,
and personality traits)
Father of Psychology
Wilhelm Wundt’s International Influence
• G. Stanley Hall (1846-1924)Student of
– Established first psych. laboratory in the
U.S. in 1883-John Hopkins U
For Wundt
Psychology became the scientific
study of conscious experience
(things that we were aware of)
The Battle of the “Schools” in the U.S.:
Structuralism vs. Functionalism
• Structuralism – Edward Titchener, an Englishman,
came to US in 1892- taught at Cornell -earned
degree in Wundt’s Germany lab
– Analyze consciousness into basic elements:
1. Introspection – careful, systematic observations
of one’s own conscious experience-subjects
exposed to auditory tones, optical illusions and
stimuli that they and one needed to analyze his
Formed in response to Structuralism:
– Gestalt Psychology= whole of anything (human
mind/behaviors) is greater than its individual
parts/the sum of its parts
Edward Titchener
The Battle of the “Schools” in the U.S.:
Structuralism vs. Functionalism
• Functionalism – William James (Harvard Teacher)
• . Structuralism went to the laboratory while
functionalists focused on how people adapt their
behavior to real world demands
-Investigate function (what does it do) of
consciousness rather than its structure
He wrote The Principles of Psychology (1890-
study of the mind, sensation, memory and
William James
Psychology’s Roots
Thinking About the Mind’s Function
– Mary Calkins (1st women
President of APA-1905Harvard denied her a degree)
– Margaret Floy Washburn
(first women Ph.D-2nd APA
president 1921)
Psychological Science Develops
• Sigmund Freud
Sigmund Freud and the Concept of the
Unconscious Mind
• Sigmund Freud (1856-1939): Austriamedical doctor who treated mental disorders
such as irrational fears, anxieties and
• Founded Psychoanalytic school of thought
• Emphasis on unconscious processes
influencing behavior, esp. Childhood
– Unconscious (thoughts, memories,
desires)= outside awareness
Freud’s Ideas:
Controversy and Influence
• Behavior is influenced by the unconscious (as
is motivation, mental disorders, personality)
• Unconscious conflict related to sexuality plays
a central role in behavior
• Controversial (criticized for being
unscientific and unreliable)
• Significant influence on the field of
psychology =First to do therapy-on women
who had conversion disorders
Behaviorism: Redefining PsychologyPure NURTURE (environment)
• John B. Watson (1878-1958): United States
– Founder of Behaviorism (Little Albert)
• Psychology = scientific study of behavior
• Behavior = overt or observable responses
or activities (only that we can see)
– Radical reorientation of psychology as a
science of observable behavior
– Study of consciousness
Classical Conditioning
John B. Watson 1878-1958
Behaviorism- alters
psychologies course
John Watson and the Nature-Nurture Debate
• Nurture, not nature
– “give me a dozen healthy infants, wellformed, and my own special world to bring
them up in and I’ll guarantee to take any
one at random and train him to become
any type of specialist I might select –
doctor, lawyer, artist, merchant-chief, and
yes, even beggar-man and thief…”
• Behaviorist school of thought emphasized
the environment (nurture)
• Focus on stimulus-response relationships
• S-R psychology
BF Skinner 19041990 operant
conditioningpigons /rats
•Responses that
lead to positive
outcomes are
•Responses that
lead to negative
outcomes are
not repeated
BF Skinner
Beyond Freedom
and Dignity
- free will an
illusion. -showed he
could have control
over behavior by
manipulating the
outcome of
The 1950’s: Opposition to Psychoanalytic
Theory and Behaviorism
• A new school of thought emerged Humanism
– Led by Abraham Maslow (1908-1970) and
Carl Rogers (1902-1987)
– Emphasis on the unique qualities of
humans: freedom of choice, personal
growth, and take responsibility for own
Abraham Maslow
Carl Rogers
Putting the Psyche Back in Psychology:
The Return of Cognition
• Cognition = refers to mental
processes involved in acquiring
knowledge (perception, problem
solving, memory, language) and also
how we think about our situations
and problems
• 1950’s and 60’s – Piaget (children’s
• Chomsky (language acquisition)
Cognitive Perspective
• Internal mental events (the things we
think) impact behavior
• Self talk
• Peoples mental images effect how they
behave. How one interprets a situation
effects how one reacts.
Biological Psychology:
The Biological Basis of Behavior
– Biological perspective - behavior
explained in terms of physiological/
biochemical processes-I flee a situation
because certain chemicals are released
that make me feel fear
• James Olds (1956)
– Electrical stimulation of the brain evokes
emotional responses in animals
• Roger Sperry (1981)
– Left and right brain specialization
– Split brain studies cats and monkies
Cultural or socio-cultural Psychology:
Recognizing Human Variation
• Ethnocentrism – viewing one’s own group
as superior and as the standard for judging
the worth of foreign ways
Evolutionary Psychology:
Human Adaptations
• Natural selection occurs for behavioral, as
well as physical, characteristics-We act the
way we do to ensure reproductive success
and future generations (and survival)
• Skills passed to future generations
• EX: good spatial skills because I am a
women who gathers food-this skill was
passed to me
Positive Psychology
• Martin Seligman’s
• Humanist concerns revisited
• Uses theory and research to better
understand the positive, creative, and
fulfilling aspects of humans
– Positive subjective experiences
– Positive individual traits
– Positive institutions and communities
Figure 1.8 Major research areas in contemporary psychology
Figure 1.9 Principal professional specialties in contemporary psychology
Psychological Approaches/Perspectives
Psychological Approaches/Perspectives
Table 1.1 Overview of Six Contemporary Theoretical Perspectives in Psychology