What is Psychology?The scientific study of behaviorand mental processes
Philosophical Developments• A Question: How aremind and body related?• RenéDescartes (1596–1650)—Interactive dualism• The mind and body interact to produceconscious experience
Philosophical DevelopmentsAnother Question: Nature vs. Nurture• Are abilities determined by our genes orour experiences?• What are the interactions betweengenetics and environment?• What effect does it have on behavior?
Foundations of Modern Psychology• Separated from philosophy in 19th century– influences from physiology remain• Wilhelm Wundt (1832–1920)– Leipzig, Germany– established first psychology research laboratory– applied laboratory techniques to study of the mind• Edward Titchener (1867–1927) Wundt’s student,professor at Cornell University– developed approach called structuralism—involvingintrospection and studying basic components ofconscious experiences.• focused on basic sensory and perceptual processes• measured reaction times
Wilhelm Wundt (1832–1920) E. B. Titchener (1867–1927)
Other Pioneers• William James (1842–1910)– started psychology at Harvard in 1870s– opposed Wundt and Titchener’s approach– his ideas shaped school of functionalism – alsoinfluenced by Darwin to focus on how behaviorshelp us adapt to the environment• Sigmund Freud (1856–1939)– Austrian physician that focused on illness– psychoanalytic theory of mental disorders
William James (1842–1910) Sigmund Freud (1856-1939)
Schools of Psychology• Psychoanalysis—personality theory andform of psychotherapy that emphasizesthe role of unconscious factors inpersonality and behavior• Behaviorism—emphasizes the study ofobservable behaviors, especially as theypertain to the process of learning• Humanistic—emphasizes each person’sunique potential for psychological growthand self-direction
Key Influences in the Development ofBehaviorism• Ivan Pavlov (1849-1936)– Behaviorism grew out of his work with dogsassociating a neutral stimulus with anautomatic behavior• John B. Watson (1878–1958)– psychologists should study overt behavior• B. F. Skinner (1904–1990)– American psychologist at Harvard– studied learning and effect of reinforcement– behaviorism
Perspectives• Perspective is a way of viewing phenomena• Psychology has multiple perspectives– Biological– Psychodynamic– Behavioral– Humanistic– Positive Psychology– Cognitive– Cross-Cultural– Evolutionary
Biological Perspective• Study the physiological mechanisms in thebrain and nervous system that organize andcontrol behavior• Focus may be at various levels– individual neurons– areas of the brain– specific functions like eating, emotion, or learning• Interest in behavior distinguishes biologicalpsychology from many other biologicalsciences
Psychodynamic Perspective• View of behavior based on experience treating patients• Psychoanalytic approach (Sigmund Freud)– both a method of treatment and a theory of the mind– behavior reflects combinations of conscious andunconscious influences– drives and urges within the unconscious componentof mind influence thought and behavior– early childhood experiences shape unconsciousmotivations
Behavioral Perspective• View of behavior based onexperience or learning–Classical conditioning–Operant conditioning
Humanistic Perspective• Developed by Abraham Maslow and CarlRogers– behavior reflects innate ‘actualization’– focus on conscious forces and selfperception– more positive view of basic forces thanFreud’s
Carl Rogers (1902–1987) Abraham Maslow (1908–1970)
Cognitive Perspective• How is knowledge acquired, organized,remembered, and used to guidebehavior?• Influences include– Piaget – studied intellectual development– Chomsky – studied language– Cybernetics – science of information processing
Cross-Cultural Perspective• The study of cultural effects on behavior andmental processes• The study of psychological differencesamong people living in different culturalgroups• How are people’s thoughts, feelings andbehavior influenced by their culture?• What are the common elements acrossculture? Are these innate?
Other Cultural Terms• Ethnocentrism—the belief that one’s ownculture or ethnic group is superior to all others,and the related tendency to use one’s ownculture as a standard by which to judge othercultures.• Individualistic cultures—those that emphasizethe needs and goals of the individual over theneeds and goals of the group• Collectivistic culture—those that emphasize theneeds and goals of the group over the needsand goals of the individual
Evolutionary Perspective• Influenced by Darwin and the emphasis oninnate, adaptive behavior patterns• Application of principles of evolution toexplain behavior and psychologicalprocesses
Specialty Areas in Psychology• Biological• Clinical• Cognitive• Counseling• Educational• Experimental• Developmental• Forensic• Health• Industrial/organizational• Personality• Rehabilitation• Social• Sports
Similarities and Differences betweenclinical psychologists and psychiatrists• Both trained in the diagnosis, treatment,causes, and prevention of psychologicaldisorders• Clinical psychologists receive doctorate(Ph.D. or Psy.D.)• Psychiatrists receive a medical degree (M.D.or D.O.) followed by years of specializedtraining in treatment of mental disorders
Psychology should study how behavior andmental processes allow organisms to adapt totheir environments.School/Approach Evolutionary perspectiveFounder Charles Darwin
Psychology should emphasize people’s uniquepotential for psychological growth.School/Approach HumanisticFounder Maslow
Psychology should only study observable behavior.School/Approach BehaviorismFounder Watson/Skinner
Goals of Psychology• Describe• Explain• Predict• Controlbehaviorial and mental processes
Scientific Method• Formulate testable questions– Develop hypotheses• Design study to collect data– Experimental– Descriptive• Analyze data to arrive at conclusions– Use of statistical procedures– Use of meta-analysis• Report results– Publication– Replication
Definitions• Empirical evidence—based upon objectiveobservation, measurement, and/orexperimentation• Hypothesis—tentative statement about therelationship between variables• Variables—factors that can vary in waysthat can be observed, measured, andverified (independent versus dependent)• Operational definition—precise descriptionof how the variables will be measured
Theory• Tentative explanation for observedfindings• Results from accumulation of findingsof individual studies• Tool for explaining observed behavior• Reflects self-correcting nature ofscientific method.
Research Strategies• Descriptive—strategies for observing anddescribing behavior– Naturalistic observation– Case studies– Surveys– Correlational methods• Experimental—strategies for inferringcause and effect relationships amongvariables
Descriptive Study• Describes a set of facts• Does not look for relationships between facts• Does not predict what may influence the facts• May or may not include numerical data• Example: measure the percentage of newstudents from out-of-state each year since1980
Naturalistic ObservationResearchers directly observe andrecord behavior rather than relyingon subject descriptions. In naturalisticobservation researcher recordsbehavior as it occurs naturally.
Case Study Method• Highly detailed description of a singleindividual• Generally used to investigate rare,unusual, or extreme conditions
Survey MethodsDesigned to investigate opinions,behaviors, or characteristics of aparticular group. Usually in self-reportform.
Samples and Sampling• Population—large (potentially infinite)group represented by the sample.Findings are generalized to this group.• Sample—selected segment of thepopulation• Representative sample—closely parallelsthe population on relevant characteristics• Random selection—every member oflarger group has equal chance of beingselected for the study sample
Correlational Study• Collects a set of facts organized into two ormore categories– measure parents’ disciplinary style– measure children’s behavior• Examine the relationship betweencategories• Correlation reveals relationships amongfacts– e.g., more democratic parents have children whobehave better
Correlational Study• Correlation cannot prove causation– Do democratic parents produce better behavedchildren?– Do better behaved children encourage parents tobe democratic?• May be an unmeasured common factor– e.g., good neighborhoods produce democraticadults and well-behaved children
Coefficient of CorrelationNumerical indication of magnitude anddirection of the relationship betweentwo variables– Positive correlation—two variables varysystematically in the SAME direction– Negative correlation—two variables varysystematically in OPPOSITE directions
Experiments• Direct way to test a hypothesis abouta cause-effect relationship betweenfactors• Factors are called variables• One variable is controlled by theexperimenter– e.g., democratic vs. authoritarian classroom• The other is observed and measured– e.g., cooperative behavior among students
Experimental Variables• Independent variable (IV)– the controlled factor in an experiment (i.e.the one you manipulate)– hypothesized to cause an effect onanother variable• Dependent variable (DV)– the measured facts– hypothesized to be influenced by IV
Independent Variable• Must have at least two levels– categories – male vs. female– numeric – ages 10, 12, 14• Simplest is experimental vs. controlgroup– experimental gets treatment– control does not
Experimental Design• Random sample—every member of thepopulation being studied should have an equalchance of being selected for the study• Random assignment—every subject in thestudy should have an equal chance of beingplaced in either the experimental or controlgroup• Randomization helps avoid false results
Sources of Bias• Expectancy effects—change in DVproduced by subject’s expectancy thatchange should happen• Demand characteristics—subtle cues orsignals by the researcher thatcommunicate type of responses that areexpected
Control of Bias• Placebo control group—exposed to a fakeIV (placebo), the effects of which arecompared to group receiving the actual IV• Double-blind study—technique in whichneither the experimenter nor participant isaware of the group to which participant isassigned
Limitations of ExperimentalDesigns• Often criticized for having little to dowith actual behavior because of strictlaboratory conditions• Ethical considerations in creatingsome more “real life” situations
Ethical Guidelines• Informed consent and voluntaryparticipation• Students as participants• Use of deception• Confidentiality of information• Information about the study anddebriefing
Using Brain Imaging inPsychological ResearchUsed for both descriptive and experimentalresearch (Henson, 2005).Types:• Positron Emission Tomography (PET)• Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)• Functional MRI (fMRI)
Using Animals in PsychologicalResearch• 90% of psychology research actually useshumans, not animals, as subjects• Many psychologists are interested in thestudy of animal behavior for its own sake(comparative psychology)• Animal subjects are sometimes used forresearch that could not feasibly beconducted on human subjects
Evaluating Media Reports• Be skeptical of sensationalist claims.• Goal of “shock” media is ratings.• Look for original sources.• Separate opinion from data.• Consider methodology andoperational definitions.• Correlation is not causality.• Skepticism is the rule in science.