PSYC 100 - Lecture 2 Sept 10th PSYC 100 Psychology Science...

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PSYC 100 Lecture 2 , Sept. 10 th Psychology: Science of behaviour and mental processes. A LITTLE HISTORY… History of Research in Psychology Represents the foundation of psychology Answers are sought using the methods of science - Allows one to reach informed conclusions and generate new questions - Will be the core of this class Psychological research methods Use insights and explanations to understand the world. Psychologists are all trained to ask questions, to gather useful information to arrive at appropriate conclusions, to develop and ask further questions based on information they have collected. What Are the Scientific Foundations of Psychology? Trace the development of psychology since its formal inception in 1879. Define the nature/nurture debate and the mind/body problem. Identify the major schools of thought that have characterized the history of experimental psychology, with a process that we call introspection. What Are the Scientific Foundations of Psychology? Psychology originated in philosophy, but also a little in physiology. What differentiates philosophy from psychology is that philosophy is not tested using the scientific method. Chinese/Muslim philosophers and scientists speculated about human behaviour. In nineteenth-century Europe, psychology emerged as a scientific discipline. Development of different schools of thought. The Nature/Nurture Debate Has a Long History Ancient Greek philosophers Aristotle and Plato debated the source of human psychology, human nature. They wondered very much about nature versus nurture. Nature vs nurture debate: Is individual psychology innate (are we born the way we are) or is it a cultural phenomenon (do we become the way we are through our environment)? Received view today: Nature and nurture influence each other and are inseparable. The interaction between heredity and environment is what leads people to feel and act the way that they do. The Mind/Body Problem Also Has Ancient Roots Mind/Body problem: Are the mind and body separate and distinct? How does our consciousness tie into the body? How does sensation and perception come from the body and into the mind? Early scholars: The mind is entirely separate from and in control of the body.
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1500s Leonardo da Vinci challenged this doctrine. First person to say that mind and body are one. He believed that the sensory images came to the middle of the brain and he called this region the census communis . 1600s (Descartes) Cartesian dualism suggested body and mind were indeed separate but that some mental functions resulted from bodily functions. Experimental Psychology Began With Introspection Early 1800s John Stuart Mill Psychology should be a science of observation be a science of observation and of experiment. He understood that philosophy had its strengths, but that there was also room for something new. Something in which you actually used the scientific method to prove the claims and to answer questions.
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