Cumulative Major Concepts

Cumulative Major Concepts - Cumulative Major Concepts(for...

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Cumulative Major Concepts (for optional brief cumulative final exam) 1. History of Psychology I want you to know about the history of psychology. That psychology is rooted in ancient philosophy. That Plato argued for nativism (nature), the idea that knowledge is inborn, while Aristotle argued for philosophical empiricism (nurture), the idea that knowledge is acquired through experience. That this philosophical argument represented the first “nature vs. nurture” debate, which continues in psychology. That Wilhelm Wundt (the father of psychology) introduced the scientific method to the field, distinguishing psychology from its philosophical roots. That John Watson, and later B.F. Skinner, called for the rejection of mentalistic constructs and wanted psychology to be the science of BEHAVIOR. That Freud proposed the psychoanalytic approach that suggested unconscious conflicts related to sex and aggression determine an individual’s personality and also problems in mental functioning. That the Humanistic theories developed out of concerns over dehumanizing aspects of psychoanalysis and behaviorism. That technological advances of the late 20 th century led to the development of the fields of cognitive psychology, neuroscience, and evolutionary psychology. 2. Organizing Themes I want you to know the following organizing themes of psychology: That psychology is empirical (requires that knowledge should be acquired only through direct observation- the scientific method); That psychology is theoretically diverse (there is always more than just one way to explain behavior); That psychology evolves in a sociohistorical context (the development of the science of psychology is influenced by historical events and changes in culture and that psychology in turn influences culture and history… e.g., the development of clinical psychology was largely a result of World War II and the development of antibiotics); That behavior is shaped by cultural heritage (having different cultural experiences leads to differences in the way we develop, perceive the world, and behave). 3. The Experimental Method I want you to know that the key feature of experiments is CONTROL. That an experimenter will hold everything constant except for the factor (or factors) that are being investigated. Because of the control, only experiments allow us to determine cause-effect relationships. 4. Independent variable and Dependent variable I want you to know that the independent variable is manipulated by the experimenter. In most experiments, there is an experimental group that receives some special treatment that the experimenter is trying to study; this group is sometimes called the treatment group. For comparison purposes, there is a control group that is does not receive any special treatment. The variable (or factor) that differs between the experimental group and the control group is the independent variable, it is the variable manipulated by the experimenter, and it is the variable that the experimenter expects to affect
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Cumulative Major Concepts - Cumulative Major Concepts(for...

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