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BY:E A DAGBANU

OUTLINE

Definition and meaning Psychology as a science Steps in scientific research Why do Psychologists study animals Goals of Psychology Importance of Psychology History of Psychology Schools of Psychology Careers in Psychology Pseudo or Para-Psychology

MEANING OF PSYCHOLOGY
Psychology is a Science that studies Behaviour and Thought processes of living organisms. The word Psychology is derived from Two Greek words: Psyche meaning Mind Logos meaning Knowledge or Study.

MEANING CONT.,
Psychology

is defined by Dennis Coon (1994) as the scientific study of human and animals behaviour.
In other words, Psychology is defined as the scientific study of behaviour (human and animals) and mental processes.

BEHAVIOUR
Behaviour refers to any activity of people or animals that can be observed directly or measured by special techniques. Simply put, it is the way individuals respond to stimuli. The term Behaviour can be covert, (private or internal) activities and overt (visible) actions.

BEHAVIOUR CONT.,
Behaviour can be classified as Reflex- this happens automatically in response to a stimulus. For example producing saliva in response to the aroma of food, and screaming or jumping when pricked by a pin. Conditioned behaviour patterns exhibited by individuals as a result of long standing practices

BEHAVIOUR CONT.,
Goal-Directed the need to satisfy individuals certain behavioural pattern. Eg. A hungry child cries until he is fed. Frustration Behaviour an action exhibited as a result of blocked goals.

MENTAL PROCESSES
This

involves perceiving, thinking, remembering, recognizing etc.

Empirical Evidence

Psychologists have a special respect for empirical evidence, which are facts or information gained from direct observation, experience and measurement.

PSYCHOLOGY AS A SCIENCE
Psychology is regarded as a scientific study because of the methods used in studying it which is similar to other Science disciplines Science is a knowledge obtained from the systematic study of the structure and behaviour of the physical world, especially by observing, measuring and experimenting, and the development of theories to describe the results of these activities.

CHARACTERISTICS OF SCIENCE

Characteristics of Scientific study are: Empirical evidence: knowledge or proof is required by experiments Replicability: similar results or findings. Generalization: results should be generalized to a wider population. Quantifiability : variable manipulated should be in quantifiable units, eg 20l. 5 km, 34g etc.

STEPS IN SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH


Problem identification Literature review Hypothesis formulation Data collection Data analysis Interpretation of results Communication of results.

ANIMALS AND PSYCHOLOGY


WHY DO PSYCHOLOGISTS STUDY ANIMAL BEHAVIOUR?

Behaviour of man can be observed by simply studying animals. Most Psychological experiments involve the use of drugs Some experiments are unethical to perform on human beings, eg neuropsychology.

ANIMALS AND PSYCHOLOGY CONT.,


Genetic experiments extent to which certain characteristics are passed from generations Deprivation experiments Studying animals are useful as their behaviour can be predicted and controlled since they live in the same ecology with man. A subtle trap that must be avoided in animal studies is the Anthropomorphic fallacy this is the error of attributing human thoughts, feelings or motives to animals.

GOALS OF PSYCHOLOGY
In

general, the goals of psychology are to describe, understand, predict and control behaviour. Beyond this, psychologys ultimate goal is to gather knowledge to benefit humanity (Kimble,1989).

GOALS OF PSYCHOLOGY CONT.,


Description: this is typically based on making a detailed record of behaviour. Understanding: this means we can explain the causes of behaviour Prediction: It is the ability to accurately forecast behaviour. Control: This means altering conditions that influence behaviour in predictable ways

Importance of Psychology
Psychology is important as it is concerned with the study of behavior and mental processes and at the same time, it is also applied to many different things in human life. Everything we do is very much related to or with psychology. Psychology, primarily studies who and what we are, why we are like that, why we act and think like that and what we could be as a person.

Importance of Psychology

Psychology is important in our daily activities such as education, events, people and their task, employment, association, relationship as well as the treatment of mental health difficulties.

IMPORTANCE OF PSYCHOLOGY TO THE NURSE, AND HEALTH WORKERS IN GENERAL

To understand the behaviour of clients and to be able to give them holistic care. Helps the nurse to know the behaviour of her colleagues and to make or carry out research work. Nurses can use knowledge in psychology in their everyday life as well as others. enables the nurse to be a good counselor and not only to care for the body and mind.

IMPORTANCE OF PSYCHOLOGY CONT.,

It enables the nurse appreciate different backgrounds of patients in order to treat them as such. It helps the nurse know his or her own personality traits and that of others in order to relate to his or her working mates well It helps the nurse tackle somatopsychic conditions of clients It helps solve psychosomatic conditions

A BRIEF HISTORY OF PSYCHOLOGY


Psychology was evolved from philosophy to science. The history of modern psychology began over 100 years ago. Into the Lab: Psychologys history as a science began in 1879 in Leipzig, Germany. There the father of Psychology Wilhelm Wundt (1832-1920) who is credited with the making psychology an independent science, separated from Philosophy, created the first psychological laboratory to study conscious experience.

HISTORY OF PSYCHOLOGY CONT.,


Wundt observed and carefully measured stimuli of various kinds (lights, sounds, weights). A stimulus is any physical energy that has some effect on an organism and that evokes response. Wundt then used introspection, or looking inward to probe his reactions to various stimuli. Wundt called this approach experimental selfobservation because of the combination of trained introspection with objective measurement.

SCHOOLS OF PSYCHOLOGY
Psychology has changed its meaning and definitions from time to time, giving rise to different views and meaning of psychology known as Schools of Thought. These schools of thoughts are known as the schools of psychology.

SCHOOLS OF PSYCHOLOGY CONT.,


Five major schools developed from the late 1800's until the 1930's.

These schools were 1. Structuralism 2. Functionalism 3. Gestalt psychology 4. Behaviorism and 5. Psychoanalysis

STRUCTURALISM
Wundts ideas were carried to the US by one of his students, a man named Edward B. Titchener. In US, Wundts ideas became known as structuralism because they dealt with the structure of mental life. The structuralists hoped to develop a sort of mental chemistry by observing experience into basic elements or building blocks.

STRUCTURALISM
The goal of the structuralists was to find the units or elements which make up the mind. The structuralists primarily used a method of research called introspection. In this technique, subjects were trained to observe and report as accurately as they could their mental processes, feeling and experiences.

STRUCTURALISM
CRITICISM Introspection was a poor way to answer many human problems. Structuralists frequently disagreed with one another Despite the limitations, looking inward still has a major role in psychology especially in the study of hypnosis, meditation, drug effects, problem solving, etc.

FUNCTIONALISM
Functionalists, such as John Dewey, James R Angel and Harvey Carr, proposed that psychology should study what mind and behavior do. William James, an American psychologist broadened the discipline to include animal behaviour, religious experience, abnormal behaviour and a number of other interesting topics.

FUNCTIONALISM

The functionalists are concerned with how behaviour and mental abilities help people adapt to their environment. They were influenced by Charles Darwins principle of natural selection which states that evolution favours plants and animals best suited to their living conditions.

FUNCTIONALISM CONT.,
Functionalism brought the study of animals into psychology It helped the growth of educational psychology It also spurred the rise of industrial psychology

CRITICISM Bahaviourists objected to the definition of psychology by Functionalists as the study of the mind or conscious

BEHAVIORISM
Functionalism was soon challenged by a new viewpoint called behaviorism. Behaviorist John B. Watson objected to defining psychology as the study of the mind or conscious experience. He also considered introspection unscientific. Behaviorism also called Stimulus-Response (S-R) Psychology emphasizes the study of overt, observable behavior.

BEHAVIORISM CONT.,
Watson adopted Russian physiologist Ivan Pavlovs conditioned response concept to explain most behaviour. A conditioned response is a learned reaction to a particular stimulus. The behaviorists also stressed the importance of environment in shaping individuals behavior.

BEHAVIORISM CONT.,
Infact Watson believed he could produce almost any response by controlling an individual's environment. Watson proclaimed, give me a dozen healthy infants, well-formed, and my own special world to bring them up in and Ill 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, beggarman and thief (Watson, 1913)

Most Psychologists consider Watsons claim as overstatement.

GESTALT PSYCHOLOGY
This school of psychology was founded in Germany about 1912 by Max Wertheimer and his colleagues Kurt Koffka and Wolfgang Kohler that emphasized the study of thinking, learning and perception in whole units, not by analysis into parts. The German word Gestalt means form, pattern or whole. Their slogan was, the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

GESTALT PSYCHOLOGY
Gestalt psychology developed as a reaction against structuralism. Gestalt psychologists believed that human beings and other animals perceive the eternal world as an organized pattern, not as individual sensations. For example; a film consists of thousands of individual still pictures, but with what looks like smooth continuous movement.

PSYCHOANALYTIC PSYCHOLOGY
This idea was postulated by an Austrian physician named Sigmund Freud in the late 1800`s and early 1900`s who developed his own theory of behaviour. Freud observed that, our behaviour is influenced by vast areas of unconscious thoughts, impulses, and desires which cannot be known directly. Freuds point of departure was his belief that mental life is like an iceberg only a small portion is exposed to view.

PSYCHOANALYTIC PSYCHOLOGY CONT.,

Psychodynamic theories focus on internal motives, conflicts, and unconscious forces that influenced our behaviour. Freud theorized that many unconscious thoughts are of a threatening, sexual or aggressive nature. Hence they are repressed, but sometimes revealed by dreams, emotions or slips of the tongue. He insisted that all thoughts, emotions and actions are determined.

HUMANISTIC
A fairly recent development in psychology is a point of view known as humanism. Humanism is sometimes called the third force in psychology. (Psychodynamic psychology and behaviorism are the two) Humanistic psychologists focus on human experience, problems, potentials, and ideals. Psychologists Carl Rogers, Abraham Maslow, and others came up with the Humanistic viewpoint as a reply to the negativity they saw in other views.

HUMANISTIC CONT.,
They stressed on free will, the human ability to make choices. Humanists helped stimulate interest in psychological needs for love, self-esteem, belonging, self-expression, creativity and spirituality. A unique feature of the humanistic approach is Maslows description of self-actualisation. According to humanists every one has this potential.

OTHER MODERN CONCEPTS OF PSYCHOLOGY

New view point includes: Biological Cognitive Developmental and Social perspectives.

TRANSPERSONAL PSYCHOLOGY

It is one of the latest approaches of the contemporary psychology. It includes the study of personal experiences that transcend the ordinary experiences i.e. what do we think and how do we feel in our altered state of awareness.

CAREERS IN PSYCHOLOGY

CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGY: This field deals with the study, diagnosis and treatment of abnormal behaviour
GUIDANCE & COUNSELING PSYCHOLOGY:

This branch focuses primarily on educational, social and career adjustments problems. This field specializes in the treatment of milder emotional and behavioural disturbances.

CAREERS IN PSYCHOLOGY CONT.,


DEVELOPMENTAL PSYCHOLOGY: This career studies social, intellectual and emotional developmental factors that shape behaviour from conception to death. SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY: It deals with how peoples thoughts feelings and actions are affected by others. PERSONALITY PSYCHOLOGY: This field tries to explain both consistency and change in a persons behaviour over time, as well as the individual traits that differentiate the behaviour of one person from another when confronting the same circumstances.

CAREERS IN PSYCHOLOGY CONT.,


HEALTH PSYCHOLOGY: This branch examines the relationship between psychological factors and physical ailments or disease. SCHOOL PSYCHOLOGY: It is an area of specialty where emphasis is laid on assessing children in elementary and secondary schools who have academic or emotional problems and developing solutions to such problems.

CAREERS IN PSYCHOLOGY CONT.,


BIOPSYCHOLOGY: This is the branch of psychology which specialized in the biological bases of behaviour. ABNORMAL PSYCHOLOGY: This field aims at finding out why people behave in abnormal ways and tries to find possible solutions to those abnormalities. COGNITIVE PSYCHOLOGY: Psychologists in this area focus on the study of higher mental processes including thinking, language, memory, problem solving, knowing, reasoning and decision making.

PSEUDO OR PARAPSYCHOLOGY
A pseudo

or para psychology is any dubious and unfounded system that resembles psychology. In other words, it is any false and unscientific system of beliefs and practices that is offered as an explanation of behaviour.

TYPES OF PSEUDO OR PARAPSYCHOLOGY CONT.,


Phrenology: Franz Gall a German anatomy teacher in the nineteenth century- belief that personality traits are revealed by the shape of the skull. Palmistry: False system that claims to reveal personality traits and to predict the future by reading lines on the palms of the hands. Graphology: False system based on the belief that handwriting can reveal personality trait.

TYPES OF PSEUDO OR PARAPSYCHOLOGY CONT.,


Astrology: This holds that the positions of the stars and planets at the time of ones birth determine personality traits and affect behaviour. Telepathy: The ability to communicate with another person who is far away without any visible means or medium. Physiognomy: The belief that a persons physical characteristics determine his personality or psychological make up eg short people are quick tempered Numerology: This is the belief that certain numbers play a role in determining human behaviour.

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