What is psychology?
How is psychology defined?
Psychology is the scientific study of behavior and mental processes
behavior: all of our outward or overt actions and reactions (i.e. talking, facial
expressions, and movement)
mental processes: all the internal, covert activity of our minds (i.e. thinking,
feeling, and remembering)
What are the goals of Psychology?
Description: observing a behavior and noting everything about it-what is
happening, where it happens, to whom it happens, and under what
circumstances it seems to happen.
Explanation: to understand behavior, important in forming theories.
Prediction: determining what will happen in the future.
Control: the modification of some behavior, to change a behavior form an
undesirable one to a desirable one.
Psychodynamic: (neo-freudian) focus on the unconscious mind and its influence
over conscious behavior and on early childhood experiences, emphasis on the
development of a sense of self and the discovery of other motivations behind a
Behavioral: (Watson and Skinner) operant conditioning—behavioral responses
that are followed by pleasurable consequences are
Humanistic: (Maslow and Rogers) the “third force” in psychology, a reaction to
both psychodynamic theory and behaviorism, understanding of human potential
achieving one’s full potential or ideal self. Influential in
Cognitive: focuses on memory, intelligence, perception, thought processes,
problem solving, language, and learning.
Cognitive Neuroscience: the study of the physical workings of the brain
and nervous system when engaged in memory, thinking, and other
cognitive processes using MRI and PET
(the study of groups, social roles, and
rules of social actions and relationships)
(the study of