Foundations of Psycholog - Foundations of Psychology...

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Foundations of Psychology Foundations of Psychology Christina Cheshire PSY/300 August 28, 2011 Emmett Lampkin
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Foundations of Psychology Foundations of Psychology When people hear the word psychology they may not always perceive it as a science. The science of psychology is based on the mental processes and behavior of human beings, and in some cases, animals. The foundations of psychology rely heavily upon four individual schools of thought. This includes the following perspectives: psychodynamic, behaviorist, cognitive, and evolutionary (Kowalski & Westen, 2009). Although the biopsychological approach is not considered as one of the four major schools of thought within psychology, it plays an important role in the foundations of psychology. These perspectives focus on a unique viewpoint or approach toward the field of psychology and each brings new ideas and theories to the table. The Psychodynamic Perspective It can be said that Sigmund Freud was the father of the psychodynamic perspective of psychology. Freud developed this perspective based upon the idea that the unconscious self is responsible for certain “underlying wishes, fears, and patterns of thought from an individual’s conscious, verbalized thought, and behavior” (Kowalski & Westen, 2009, p. 13). Essentially, the psychodynamic perspective suggests that people’s actions and thoughts are influenced by unconscious factors that they may not be aware of. The goal of psychodynamic psychologists was to discover how these unconscious factors influence the behavior and mental processes of human beings. Due to the nature of this perspective psychologists relied heavily upon the case study method which permitted observation and analysis of the patient’s dreams, fantasies, and fears.
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Foundations of Psychology The psychodynamic perspective has been intensely criticized throughout the years because of the nature of the theories provided by this perspective. In fact, it is the most criticized perspective because it relies primarily upon interpretation. Psychologists who favor the psychodynamic perspective are often fascinated by “phenomena not amendable to more traditional experimental methods” (Kowalski & Westen, 2009, p. 14).
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This note was uploaded on 01/10/2012 for the course PSYCHOLOGY 340 taught by Professor Kristink.merritte,ph.d. during the Winter '11 term at University of Phoenix.

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Foundations of Psycholog - Foundations of Psychology...

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