2 Three Themes

2 Three Themes - I. Three Themes in Understanding...

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1 Three Themes in Understanding Psychology: Science, Philosophy, and History I. INTRODUCTION A. Issues and Goals s Understanding psychology involves adopting three perspectives: s Scientific Perspective: s Understanding the procedures psychologists use to answering questions in a scientific manner. s Historical Perspective: s Understanding the social, cultural, intellectual, and emotional settings that shaped psychological ideas. s Philosophical Perspective: s Understanding the enduring questions about the nature of reality and knowledge addressed by psychology. I. INTRODUCTION A. Issues and Goals s In this lecture we review each perspective, highlighting central points or issues. s Of interest is how to hold the three perspectives simultaneously when exploring Psychology s Simultaneous adoption of the scientific, historical, and philosophical perspectives amounts to exploring Psychology from a Philosophy/History of Science point of view. s The history/philosophy of science affords a broad appreciation of psychology, its nature, origins, and place in modern society. II. SCIENTIFIC PERSPECTIVE A. What is Science? s Stanovich defined science as: s Systematic Empiricism: Evidence-based. s Publicly verifiable: Ideas are open to scrutiny. s Deals with solvable problems: Only testable ideas. s But by focusing on process not content, the definition insures that psychology is scientific, s Kant and Galileo (among others) argued that psychology could never become a science because of its focus on subjective experience (e.g., mental events) s Less than 75 years later, psychology was heralded as a new science and quickly spread into popular culture.
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2 II. SCIENTIFIC PERSPECTIVE A. What is Science? s Science was developed as a way to answer questions about nature. s One issue is whether Psychology has answered any questions using scientific methods? s Do ideas in psychology just come and go or are they accepted or rejected by scientific means? s Did Phrenology (18 th belief that personality traits were determined by "reading" bumps on the skull) fall out of favor because… s the idea was scientifically rejected OR s believers died off and other ideas took its place II. SCIENTIFIC PERSPECTIVE A. What is Science? s Actually, Phrenology is still with us in the form of the Modularity Hypothesis (localization of brain function) in cognitive neuroscience. II. SCIENTIFIC PERSPECTIVE A. What is Science? s Science was developed as a way to answer questions without appeal to … s church dogma (Darwin: Evolutionary Theory) s past authorities (Copernicus: Heliocentric Theory) s superstition (Galileo: Moons of Jupiter) s abstract thought alone (Philosophy) s The unique contribution of science over other methods of arriving at truth is the use of direct observation of nature ! s
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2 Three Themes - I. Three Themes in Understanding...

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