PSY 360 Week #1_Assignment_Cognitive Psychology Definition Paper
PSY 360 Week #1_Assignment_Cognitive Psychology Definition Paper
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Date Created: 11/12/15
Cognitive Psychology Definition Paper PSY 360 University of Phoenix Definition Paper 1 Definition Paper I2 Cognitive Psychology Definition Paper Four key milestones in the development of psychology as a discipline Psychology materialized as a separate discipline in Germany in the late 1800s out of the disciplines of philosophy and philosophy which was studying questions about the mind Its earliest history can be traced back to the time of the early Greeks and during the 17thcentury the French philosopher Rene Descartes introduced the idea of dualism which asserted that the mind and body were two separate entities that interact to form the human experience 1 Physiology also contributed to the psychology as a scientific discipline For example early physiology research on brain and behavior had a dramatic impact on psychology ultimately contributing to the application of scientific methodologies to the study of human thought and behavior Wagner nd 1 Emergence of the First Psychology Lab 1879 Transforming from philosophy to psychology was a major milestone with the first psychology lab in 1879 at the University of Leipzig opened by Wilhelm Wundt a German physiologist This is generally considered the official start of psychology as a separate and distinct scientific discipline Wundt perceived the subject as the study of human consciousness and sought to apply experimental methods to studying internal mental processes While his use of a process known as introspection is seen as unreliable and unscientific today his early work in psychology helped set the stage for future experimental methods While his in uence dwindled in the years to come his impact on psychology is unquestionable Wagner nd 1 Definition Paper I3 Emergence of Different Schools of Thought Structuralism and Functionalism Next different schools of thought began to emerge with Structuralism being the first with Edward B Titchener one of Wundt39s students as the main proponent For structuralists human consciousness could be broken down into much smaller parts using a process known as introspection trained subjects would attempt to break down their responses and reactions to the most basic sensation and perceptions While structuralism is notable for its emphasis on scientific research its methods were unreliable limiting and subjective When Titchener died in 1927 structuralism gave rise to functionalist The main functionalist was William James father of American psychology with psychology ourishing in American during the mid to late 1800s The focus of functionalism was on how behavior actually works to help people live in their environment using methods such as direct observation While both of these early schools of thought emphasized human consciousness their conceptions of it were significantly different While the structuralist s sought to break down mental processes into their smallest parts the functionalists believed that consciousness existed as a more continuous and changing process While functionalism is no longer a separate school of thought it would go on to in uence later psychologists and theories of human thought and behavior Wagner nd l Definition Paper I4 Psychoanalysis Psychoanalysis was the next school of thought Whereas early psychology stressed conscious human experience Sigmund Freud changed the face of psychology in a dramatic way proposing a theory of personality that emphasized the importance of the unconscious mind Freud39s clinical work with patients suffering from hysteria and other ailments led him to believe that early childhood experiences and unconscious impulses contributed to the development of adult personality and behavior While many of his ideas are viewed with skepticism today his in uence on psychology is undeniable 4 Behaviorism Psychology again changed dramatically as Behaviorism dominated Psychology It rejected focusing on both the conscious Structuralism and Functionalism and unconscious mind Psychoanalysis Instead behaviorism strove to make psychology a more scientific discipline by focusing purely on observable behavior Proponents were s Russian physiologists Ivan Pavlov classical conditioning Watson and B F Skinner According to this psychology was entirely concerned with external behaviors not the analysis of the mind underlying the behavior Thus it all but eliminated cognitive psychology for 40 years Anderson 1980 Watson de ned Behaviorism in his classic book Behaviorism 1924 quotBehaviorismholds that the subject matter of human psychology is the behavior of the human being Behaviorism claims that consciousness is neither a definite nor a usable concept The behaviorist who has been trained always as an experimentalist holds further that belief in the existence of consciousness goes back to the ancient days of superstition and magicquot The impact of behaviorism was enormous and this school of thought continued to dominate for Definition Paper IS the next 50 years Psychologist BF Skinner furthered the behaviorist perspective with his concept of operant conditioning which demonstrated the effect of punishment and reinforcement on behavior While behaviorism eventually lost its hold on psychology the basic principles of behavioral psychology are still widely in use today Therapeutic techniques such as behavioral modification and token economies are often utilized to help children learn new skills and overcome maladaptive behaviors while conditioning is used in many situations ranging from parenting to education Wagner nd Behavioral observations are also important in Cognitive Psychology Braisby amp Gellatly 2005 Humanistic Psychology The Third Force In reaction to psychoanalysis and behaviorism a new school of thought known as humanistic psychology often referred to the third force emerged during the second half of the century It once again emphasized conscious experiences Wagner nd The main humanist proponents are Carl Rogers and Abraham Maslow Indeed American psychologist Carl Rogers is often considered the founding father of Humanist Psychology quotWhile psychoanalysts looked at unconscious impulses and behaviorists focused purely on environmental causes Rogers believed strongly in the power of free will and selfdetermination Psychologist Abraham Maslow also contributed to humanistic psychology with his famous hierarchy of needs theory of human motivationquot Wagner nd Cognitive Psychology Cognitive psychology is the branch of psychology devoted to the scientific study of the mind so we have come full circle to Wundt39s theory Cognitive psychology has also been defined in terms of its methods a experimental studies of normal cognition b neuropsychological studies that Definition Paper I6 relate normal to abnormal cognition c neuroimaging studies that reveal the location andor the time course of brain activity and d computational models which can be tested and compared with experimental data Braisby amp Gellatly 2005 The proponents in the 1950s were Briner Brown Chomsky and Miller which was another perspective to add to the artificial intelligence and Broadbent39s filter models Benjamin 2007 2 Importance of behavioral observation in cognitive psychology According to this theory everyday behavior involves multiple cognitive processes however the cognitive studies tend to isolate one process or set of processes for study Braisby amp Gellatly 2005 However how do they measure cognitive processes This is the importance of behavioral observation as the task of the cognitive psychologist is a highly inferential one She or he must proceed from observations of the behavior of humans performing intellectual tasks to conclusions about the abstract mechanisms underlying the behavior Braisby amp Gellatly 2005 Thus considering these milestones this discipline has seen dramatic growth and change since its official beginnings in Wundt39s lab It continues to emerge as a disciplinequotPsychology has continued to evolve since 1960 and new ideas and perspectives have been introduced Recent research in psychology looks at many aspects of the human experience from the biological in uences on behavior to the impact of social and cultural factors Today the majority of psychologists do not identify themselves with a single school of thought Instead they often focus on a particular specialty area or perspective often drawing on ideas from a range of Definition Paper I7 theoretical backgrounds This eclectic approach has contributed new ideas and theories that Will continue to shape psychology for years to comequot Wagner nd p4 1 References Van Wagner K nd The rise of behaviorism The psychology of Pavlov Watson and Skinner Retrieved from httppsvchOIOgvaboutcomodhistorvofpsvchologvapsvchistorv 3htm History of psychology nd Retrieved from httpenwikipediaorgWikiHistorv of stchologV Watson J B 1924 Behaviorism New York Norton Hakem N G The rise and crisis of Psychoanalysis in America Freud and the Americans 1917 1985 Hale Nathan G Freud and the Americans V 2 Hardcover Available from htt WWWamazoncomRiseCrisisPs choanal sisAmerica Americansd 0195046374 Van Wagner K nd Carl Rogers Biography 19021987 Retrieved from httppsychologyaboutcomodprofilesofmajorthinkerspbio rogershtm Braisby N amp Gellatly A 2005 Foundations of Cognitive Psychology In N Braisby amp A Gellatly Eds Cognitive Psychology Oxford Oxford University Press Definition Paper I8 Anderson J R 1980 Cognitive psychology and its implications San Francisco Freeman Benjamin LT 2007 A brief history of modern psychology New Yorszlackwell Publishing Available from httpbooksgooglecabooks idB veMINTS 1b4CampD PA206amp1132PA206ampdqriseofc02nitivepsychologyampsourceblamp otsN2D20baHampsigU62BRk c MWUsb akKTeLZiXCD amphlenampsaXampoibook re sultampresnum l 0ampctre sultPPA2 l 0 M1
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