Chapter 1 -- Cognitive Psychologists' Approach to Research

Chapter 1 -- Cognitive Psychologists' Approach to Research...

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Chapter 1 Why Make Assumptions? 2 types of assumptions o 1) what aspects of the mind are important enough to explain Ex: people wanting to explain the conscious experience of visual perception o 2) beliefs about the mind that affect how everyone thinks about vision, attention, etc. Ex: how does the image projected on the back of eye get turned right side up? Assumption: the retina presents an image to the brain, which handles conscious perception (in reality, the pattern of neural activity on the retina DOES NOT look like what is out in the world – it is upside down) How did Philosophers and Early Psychologists Study the Mind? Philosophical underpinnings o Ancient Greece Interest in how knowledge acquired; came up with incorrect answers Questions about (1) perception (2) memory (3) nature and nurture However, came up with three very important assumptions (1) the world is predictable and can be understood (2) human behavior can be explained like everything else (3) trying to understand the world is a worthwhile pursuit o The Dark Ages and The Middle Ages Few contributions to philosophy of mind (because of barbarians, church, etc.) o The Renaissance through the 19 th century Humanism (focus on individual), return of 3 important assumptions and THE SCIENTIFIC METHOD!!! Scientific method – observation as route to knowledge Why didn’t Psychology start until 1879?
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o The idea of applying scientific method to studying the mind seemed ridiculous during the Renaissance Held NONDETERMINISTIC view (human behavior is not predictable because of
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Chapter 1 -- Cognitive Psychologists' Approach to Research...

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