The Strengths Of Cognitive Approach To Psychology

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The cognitive approach to psychology
The cognitive approach began to change the way people thought about psychology in the late 1950s and early 1960s, and became the main approach to psychology in the 1970s. Interest in the way the brain worked had made a comeback through the work of people like Tolman and Piaget (Simply Psychology, 2007), however it was the release of the computer that gave cognitive psychology the terminology and metaphor it needed to investigate the human mind (Hill, 2001). Cognitive psychology compares the human mind to a computer, this suggests that humans are information processors too and it is possible to study the internal mental processes that lie between stimulus and response (Billingham, et al., 2008). Cognitive psychologists believe our programming can be investigated using science by proposing models of
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Unlike approaches such as behaviourism, the cognitive approach investigates many areas of interest within psychology. Although approaches such as humanism and psychoanalysis investigate these neglected areas, they fail to investigate them using the rigorous scientific methods the cognitive approach uses (Simply Psychology, 2007). In contrast to the physiological approach, the cognitive approach bases its explanations firmly at a functional, psychological level, instead of resulting to reductionism to explain the behaviour of humans (Hill, 2001). This approach also provides explanations to many aspects of human behaviour and has had some useful practical applications, such as improving the reliability of eyewitness accounts - Loftus and Palmer's (1974) (Billingham, et al., 2008). Finally, the cognitive approach has prompted and combined with many other approaches and areas of study to produce, for example, artificial intelligence, social cognition, cognitive neuropsychology and social learning theory (Pennington & McLoughlin,