General Psychology PSY 2012
University of Central Florida
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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Nicklaus Lind on Thursday October 22, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to PSY 2012 at University of Central Florida taught by Cyrus Azimi in Fall. Since its upload, it has received 10 views. For similar materials see /class/227606/psy-2012-university-of-central-florida in Psychlogy at University of Central Florida.
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Date Created: 10/22/15
August 26 2009 Chapter 1 The Nature of Psychology 1 Definition ofpsychology Psychology is defined as the scientific study of behavior and mental processes It is based on two Latin words psyche soul of spirit and logos study The roots of psychology are traced to ancient Greek philosophers including Socrates Plato and Aristotle For centuries psychology was dominated by religious views 11 Beginning of Scientific Psychology Philosophers were interested in the study of mind and body and the relation between the two However the birth of scientific psychology is dates on 1879 when Wilhelm Wundt father of psychology established the first psychology lab at the University of Leipzig in Germany Later John Watson from the school of behaviorism states that psychology was the scientific study of behavior both covert and overt behavior Covert behavior is not noticed but overt behavior is observable behavior and should be the focus of study according to behaviorists Since 1879 various schools of psychology have been presented by persons studying human or animal behavior 111 Scienti c Study of Behavior Present day psychologists focus on the study of behavior for the following reasons Prediction of behavior a b Control of behavior c Explanation of behavior d Description of behavior IV Contemporary Psychological Perspectives A perspective is an approach or a way of looking at topics within psychology The following perspectives approaches are currently used in the study of both human and animal behavior 1 Biological Perspective This perspective is also called the neurological approach It attempts to relate overt behavior to electrical and chemical events taking place inside the body Research from the biological perspective tries to specify the neurobiological processes that case behavior and mental processes related to heredity as the cause of behavior 2 Behavioral Perspective This perspective says that all behavior is determined by learning and conditioning The emphasis is on the role of reward reinforcement in learning new behavior Overt behavior is usually the focus This perspective believes that nothing is biological 3 Cognitive Perspective This perspective states that human beings are problem solvers concerned with mental processes such as perceiving remembering reasoning deciding and problem solving This perspective stresses the fact that man is a thinker and a problem solver 4 Psychoanalytic Perspective Sigmund Freud proposed the psychoanalytic perspective of human behavior According to this perspective behavior stems from unconscious processes of which a person is not aware of He believed that people are driven by the same instincts as animals Two basic instincts are sex and aggression 5 Subjective Humanistic Perspective This perspective states that human behavior depends on how heshe sees the world It also emphasized that human beings have free will It states that people tend to consider subjective personal experiences rather than objective impersonal reality V Major Subfields of Psychology 1 Experimental Psychology Experimental Psychologists study human or animal behavior in laboratories 2 Biological Physiological Psychology Studies the relationship between biological or physiological proc and benefits 3 Developmental Psychology Developmental psychologists are concerned with human development and the factors that shape behavior from birth to old age 4 Social and Personality Psychology Social psychology studies people s behaviors in groups Personality psychologists study the thoughts emotions and behaviors that define an individual s personal style of interacting with the world 5 Clinical and Counseling Psychology Clinical psychologists are the largest group of psychologists They deal with serious emotional problems Counseling psychologists deal with less serious emotional problems 6 Industrial Organizational and Engineering Psychology Industrial psychologists deal with selecting the best people for particularjobs or work with machines Industrial psychologists are also called organizational psychologists Engineering psychologists improve the relationship between people and machines 7 School and Educational Psychology School psychologists work with children to evaluate learning and emotional problems Educational psychologists are specialists in learning and teaching VI Research Methods How Psychology Research is done 1 Generating Hypothesis A hypothesis is a statement that can be tested Usually a scientific theory is the source of making a hypothesis an education guess Using applied research practical applications of scientific knowledge a hypothesis can be proven or rejected 2 Experimental Method Experimental is the most powerful method It is usually conducted in a laboratory under controlled conditions Usually two groups of subjects are chosen a control group and an experimental group The experimental group is subjected to the condition of the experiment The control is for comparison needed for accuracy a Independent Variable also known as cause or stimulus This is under the complete control of the experimenter who also controls its variation An example is when the experimenter gradually increases the room temperature in a classroom b Dependant Variable also known as the effect or response This is the result of the independent variable In the above example as room temperature increases students take off sweaters and begin to feel uncomfortable Another example is as we get more hungry independent variable blood sugar decreases dependant variable The independent variable is always plotted on the horizontal axis while the dependant variable 0 is always plotted on the vertical axis in psychological experiments 3 Observational Method This method involves observing the behavior of a person in hisher natural environment The experimenter must objectively and systematically record the behavior of the individual observed 4 Survey Method This method usually involves asking people s views and opinions on various subjects This method has been used for political preferences product preferences health care needs public opinion on various topics etc telephone surveys are a very common example 5 Case Histories Method This method uses a very detailed study of a person s life history It is a partial biography of a particular individual It is usually conducted to illustrate important and exceptional cases Case studies carried over an extended period of time are called longitudinal studies VII Correlation Correlation states a relationship between two or more variables For example there is a relationship between summer heat and road rage This means they don t cause each other but they are related Poverty and crime is also an example One does not cause the other a Positive correlation a positive correlation is positively correlated If one increases so does the other And example is if attractiveness and intelligence are positively related the more intelligent someone is the more attractive A perfect positive correlation is 100 or 1 Negative correlation negatively correlated If one increases the other decreases And example is as the degree of brain damage increases the person can learn less material A perfect negative correlation is 100 or 1 57 c Correlation Coefficient expressed as a number is an estimate of the degree the two variables are related Symbolized as r it is expressed as a number between 1 and 1 A perfect relation is 1 or 1 100 When the value of r is above 90 r 90 and r90 the correlation is significant
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