Essay on Chapter 1 Notes

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Psychology Chapter 1
Defining Psychology And Exploring Its Roots
Psychology: scientific study if behavior and mental processes
Science: the use of systematic methods to observe the natural world, including human behavior, and to draw conclusions
Behavior: everything we do that can do be directly observed
Mental processes: the thoughts, feelings and motives that each of us experiences privately but that cannot be observed directly
Four Attitudes Of Psychologist Scientific Approach: critical thinking, curiosity, skepticism, and objectivity
Empirical Method: gaining knowledge through the observation of events, the collection of data, and logical reasoning
Philosophy and physiology were dwelling into psychology before it came about; parents of psychology
An objective attitude (philosophy) and methods (physiology) were needed before psychology could be\
William Wundt: opened first psychology lab in Germany 1879, structuralism (focused on identifying the structures of the human mind, also Hall (opened first psych lab in America 1883) and Titchner (more advanced 1890s))
William James: functionalism approach(emphasizing the functions and purposes of the mind and behavior in the individuals adaptation to the environment) , ties to natural selection
Contemporary Approaches To Psychology
Biological Approach: focus on the body especially the brain and nervous system; neuroscience (Nervous system)
Behavioral Approach: focuses on an organism’s visible interactions with the environment (Watson & Skinner Early 1900s/ based on verifiability)
Psychodynamic Approach: emphasizes unconscious thought, conflict between biological drives and society demands, and early childhood family experiences (Freud Early !900s); psychoanalytic theory (explain personality, motivation and mental disorders by focusing on the unconscious determinants of behavior)
Humanistic Approach: emphasizes the unique qualities of humans especially their potential for personal growth and the freedom to choose one’s destiny (Roger & Maslow Mid late 1950s)
Cognitive Approach: emphasizes the mental processes involved in knowing how to direct our attention, perceive, remember, think and solve problems
Evolutionary Approach: centered on evolutionary ideas such as adaptation, reproduction and natural selection as the basis for explaining specific human behaviors
Sociocultural Approach: influences of social and cultural environments on behavior, cross cultural research
Scientific Method
Observing Some Phenomenon: involves the study of a variable (anything that can change) and develop a theory (broad idea or set of closely related ideas that attempts to explain observations; must be falsifiable)
Formulating Hypothesis And Predictions: stating a hypothesis (a testable prediction that derives logically from a theory); if a lot of hypothesis come out to be true regarding a theory can gain a theory’s credibility.
Testing Through Empirical Research: need a concrete way to measure the variables of interest; operational definition ( provides an objective description of how a variable is going to be measured and observed in a particular study.); data analysis and statistics used
Drawing Conclusions: Where theory gains credibility or reliability
Evaluating Conclusions: researchers submit their work for publication and it undergoes rigorous review
Types Of Psychological Research:
Descriptive Research: describing some phenomenon – determining its basic dimensions and defining what this thing is; cannot prove what causes some phenomenon; methods include observation, surveys and interviews, and case studies
Observation: need to be systematic to be effective ( whom you are observing, when and where you will observe, etc)
Surveys And Interviews: can only measure what people think of themselves, people do not always tell the truth,
Case Study: an in depth look at a single individual,
Correlational Research: tells us about the relationships between variables and