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Psychology Goals of Psychology

Word origin: psyche referring to mind 1. Describe
and logos referring to study of  What happened?
2. Explain
Coined in the 1590s by Rudolph  Why it happened?
3. Predict
 When it can possibly happen again?
Nowadays, psychology refers to the
scientific study of mental processes 4. Control
and behavior  How can we exert control over it?

History of Psychology
Rene Descartes
Prior to 1879
physiology and Suggested that humans are born with an
philosophy scholars innate store of knowledge and understanding
were studying of reality
questions of the mind
John Locke
Physiology+ Philosophy Suggested that knowledge is acquired
= Psychology through experience
Humans are born as tabula rasa

In 1879
Wilhelm Wundt
established the
first psychological
laboratory in Schools of Thought
Leipzig, Germany
in Psychology
is considered by
many as the
father of modern


Structuralism (1879) Functionalism (1890s)

associated with Wilhelm associated with
Wundt and Edward William James
Titchener focused on the function
focused on identifying the rather than the
structure or the basic structure of
elements of the mind consciousness
used introspection was interested in how
careful, systematic our minds adapt to our
observations of ones changing environment
conscious experience

Psychoanalytic School
Behaviorism (1910s)
of Thought (1890s) associated with John
associated with Sigmund B. Watson
emphasized the
focused on the objective, scientific
unconscious mind as a analysis of observable
means of explaining behaviors
personality and mental

Gestalt Psychology (1910s)

gestalt is a German
word meaning form or emphasized that perception is more than the sum
configuration of its parts and studied how sensations are
associated with Max assembled into meaningful perceptual
Wertheimer experiences
focused on describing
the organization of The whole is greater than the sum of its parts
mental processes


Psychology now... Biological Perspective

Also known as the biopsychological
Psychological Perspectives
Approaches to explaining behavior
Attempts to explain behavior in terms
and mental processes
of underlying biological processes

LOVE is a chemical reaction

- Greta Garbo

Behavioral Perspective Cognitive Perspective

An approach that
A psychological
focuses on cognitive
approach that
processes such as
emphasizes how the
perception, thinking,
environment and
and memory that
experience affect a underlie behavior
persons or animals

Psychodynamic Perspective Humanistic Perspective

Focuses on the aspects of
Emphasizes the role of personality that make people
unconscious motivation uniquely human, such as
and early childhood freedom of choice and
experiences in personal growth rather than
determining behavior
the scientific understanding
and thought
and assessment of behavior


Evolutionary Perspective Socio

SocioCultural Perspective
Combines social psychology and cultural
Emphasizes the origins An approach that emphasizes the
of behavior and their relationship of social behavior and
cultural background in explaining
adaptive values and
why people think and act the
purposes they continue way they do.
to serve

Eclectic Approach
Using a combination of
various perspectives in
the attempt to explain
why people think and
act the way they do.
More approaches,
more answers!