Jan 11 - Cognition_ Early theories and ways of thinking.docx - PSYC 213 Cognition Jan 11 Cognition Early theories and ways of thinking What we covered

Jan 11 - Cognition_ Early theories and ways of...

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PSYC 213CognitionJan 11 - Cognition: Early theories and ways of thinkingWhat we covered last classDefined cognition: The study of the mind and mental functionA brief history of cognitive psychology: Philosophical roots. Plato and AristotleSchools of experimental psychology: Structuralism, Functionalism, BehaviorismWe started from the bottom …The ideas of Aristotle and Plato have contributed to different aspects of cognitivePsychology: Plato. Rationalism: Influence on theory developmentAristotle. Empiricism: Influence on experimental method developmentOther influential philosophersSome other examples of important philosophers:Augustine (354-430 CE):The mind is the interface between the world and the divine. Memory is the root of psychological functionAquinas (1225-1274): Distinguished between the soul and reason. Senses help us acquire knowledge that governs reasonTo summarize: Psychology and philosophy are very intertwined.We started from the bottom …Structuralism (late 1800s): Sought to understand the configuration of the basic elements of the mind by studying the components of percepts/sensations → “Looking for the lego pieces of the mind!”. Introspection – this is NOT armchair speculation but an experimental method of self observationFunctionalism:Psychologists should focus on why the mind works rather than studying the structure of the mind. Methodological approach was eclectic. The ‘usefulness of knowledge’ was a driving force.Behaviorism (1900s): Focused on the stimulus and the response: Only what can be observed. Mental processes were treated as a mysterious black box that shouldbe avoided! → Shift from human to animal research: Why not? If only overtactions are of interest, then animal research offers more control → E.g., Skinner and operant conditioning… now we’re hereThe cognitive revolutionWhy?One reason was because of problems with behaviorism: It could not deal with the complexity of human activity. E.g., how we learn languageWhen?1950/60s.What?Acceptance of internal mental states and the use of rigorous scientific methods to study these states.How?Classic models focused on information processingThree main stages of cognitive psychology1
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PSYC 213CognitionSomething to think about: what could be the next stage of cognitive psychology?Cognition: Keep in mindIs an actively developing area of inquiryHas evolved and will continue to evolve: New findings, New questions, New techniques and toolsThis class1.Learn about classic cognitive psychology views: Information processing and theory
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