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Historical and Modern Psychological Perspectives


anecdotal evidence

personal stories about specific experiences and incidents


school of psychology that emphasizes the measurement and analysis of observable behavior

biopsychosocial model

approach considering the complex interactions of biological, psychological, and social factors in understanding behavior and mental states

cognitive neuroscience

field of study exploring the relationship of brain structure and function to thoughts, feelings, perception, decision-making, and reasoning

confirmation bias

tendency to seek out or interpret new information in ways that support a previously held belief

critical thinking

objective evaluation and analysis informed by evidence

empirical approach

basing understanding of the world on measured and observed phenomena rather than beliefs

evolutionary psychology

branch of psychology, rooted in the work of biologist Charles Darwin, studying psychological concepts such as perception, language, and memory as the products of adaptation


capable of being proven wrong based on observation or evidence

Freudian psychology

branch of psychology focusing on the role of the unconscious in shaping behavior, introduced by Sigmund Freud


school of thought focused on understanding the purpose of consciousness and mental processes

hindsight bias

tendency to see events that have already occurred as being easily predictable despite having little evidence

humanistic psychology

branch of psychology emphasizing the human capacity for growth and suggesting that human nature is mostly positive


testable prediction that can be evaluated by observable data

illusory correlation

perceiving a stronger relationship between events than actually exists


collection of beliefs or practices that appear to be scientific but are not supported by evidence


scientific study of behavior, mental states, and processes in humans and other animals


repeating a study to verify the original results

scientific method

set of experimental and mathematical procedures scientists use to develop, test, and modify ideas about how the world works


school of psychology attempting to understand the structure of the mind through introspection


explanation of some aspect of the natural world backed by substantial evidence