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Chapter 1 - Psych 2010

by: Molly Johnson

Chapter 1 - Psych 2010 Psyc 2010 - 006 (Psychology, Lucia Lazarowski, Introduction to Psychology)

Molly Johnson
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About this Document

• Notes taken from in class lectures and online ebook
Introduction to psychology
Lucia Lazarowski
Class Notes
Intro to Psychology, Psychology




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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Molly Johnson on Wednesday August 24, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to Psyc 2010 - 006 (Psychology, Lucia Lazarowski, Introduction to Psychology) at Auburn University taught by Lucia Lazarowski in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 24 views. For similar materials see Introduction to psychology in Psychology (PSYC) at Auburn University.

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Date Created: 08/24/16
Intro to Psych 2010 Chapter 1 – The Science of Psychology 1.1 What is Psychological Science? ­Psychological science ­ the study of mind, brain and behavior through research  • Mind ­ the mental activity • Brain ­ responsible for memories, thoughts and feelings • Behavior ­ describes the totality of observable human actions ­Psychology ­ involves the study of mental activity and behavior • Psychology is a science • Based on empirical evidence ­ Anything else is likely unreliable  • Ex. most “self­help” books, palm reading ­Psychologists ­ someone who studies mental activity and behavior • NOT a mind reader or mind controller ­Psychology involves critical thinking • “Amiable skepticism” ­ questioning information using well­supported  evidence  ­ Ex. Vaccine linked to autism = scandal ­Personality traits  • Our brains seek patterns often when they don’t exist  • Our expectations influence us ­ Ex. horoscopes, coincidences  • Confirmation bias ­ Selectively attend to evidence that confirms our beliefs  • Hindsight bias ­ “Knew it all along” effect ­ Once we know the outcome, we think we would have predicted it • Self­serving bias ­ Overconfidence ­ When good things happen to us we give ourselves credit • Ex. “I got an A on my test because I studied so hard” ­ When bad things happen to us we blame other things/people • Ex. “We lost our soccer game because the ref were bad” 1.2 Scientific Foundations of Psychology ­Nature/Nurture • Human development is influenced by the environment and life  experiences (nurture) vs. inherited traits (nature) ­ What makes someone intelligent? • When someone achieves greatness thanks to an innovation  —> Nature ­ born with smart genes; Nurture ­ school,  environment ­Mind/Body problem  • Are the mind and body separate and distinct? • Is the mind simply the subjective experience of ongoing brain activity? ­Sigmund Freud • Psychoanalytic theory ­ Neurological disorders with no medical reasons ­ Behavior caused by mental processes below conscious awareness 1.3 Latest Development in Psychology ­Three major advances that have helped our understanding of psychological  phenomena: Brain chemistry, neuroscience and the human genome 2 • Brain chemistry ­ Hundreds of substances play an important role in mental activity  and behavior  • Neuroscience ­ Researchers are now able to use brain imaging technologies (MRI,  fMRI, PET, etc.) to help study the complexity of how the brain  works  • The Human Genome ­ The human genome is the basic genetic code for the human body ­Evolutionary thinking is influential  • Evolutionary psychology attempts to explain mental traits ­ Functions such as memory, perception and language are  adaptations  ­Our Evolutionary Heritage  • The challenges that our ancestors faced helps us understand our behavior KEY TERMS ­Dualism ­ Idea that the mind and body are intertwined but separate ­Introspection ­ A systematic way that requires people to inspect and report on one’s  own internal thoughts ­ Structuralism ­ An approach to psychology that involves studying and underlying  components of mental experience ­ Stream of consciousness ­ A phrase from William James that describes each  person’s continuous series of thoughts ­ Functionalism ­ An approach to psychology concerned with the function, of mind and  behavior  • Adaptive purposes ­ Helps humans adapt to environmental demands ­Gestalt theory ­ The whole is different from the sum of its parts 3 • Perception of objects ­ Evolutionary theory ­ A theory by Charles Darwin; views the history of a species in  terms of the inherited and physical characteristics, of mental activity and behavior ­Adaptations ­ the physical characteristics, skills, or abilities that increase the chances  of reproduction/survival are more likely to be passed along to future generations ­ Natural selection ­ the idea that those who inherit characteristics that help them adapt  to the environment have a selective advantage ­ Behaviorism ­ A psychological approach that emphasizes the role of environmental  forces in producing observable behavior ­ Cognitive psychology ­ study of mental functions such as intelligence, thinking,  language, memory, and decision making • Ex. fears are due to irrational perceptions and dysfunction thoughts  ­ Cognitive neuroscience ­ study of the neural mechanisms • Thought, learning, perception, language, and memory ­ Social psychology ­ study of how people influence other people’s thoughts, feelings,  and actions ­ Personality psychology ­ study of characteristic thoughts, emotions, and behaviors in  people and how they vary across social situations 4


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