Introduction to Psychology

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Introduction to Psychology

Introduction to Psychology

Main Ideas Psychology is the study of the mental processes and behavior. The term psychology comes from the Greek word psyche meaning "breath, spirit, soul" and the logia meaning "study of." The behaviour of human beings is one of the major concepts that psychologists look at. It is complex and they want to understand it as best they can. Psychologists that are studying behaviour ask questions that focus on mental, physical and social processes that contribute to different behaviours. Motivation theories, another big part of psychology, believes that every learned response is the result of some motivation. Intelligence is also one major focal point of psychologists. Many believe that intelligence is a single, general ability, and many others believe that it consists of a range of aptitudes, skills, and talents. In Freud's theory, there's defense mechanisms that humans have been proven to commonly use. Denial; disbelief in what has happened. Repression; forcing an incidence out of your conscious mind and deep into your unconscious. Projection; the surfacing into physical reality the issues you previously buriedin your subconsious. These are only a few of many

Schools of ThoughtStructuralism - Seeks to analyze the mind (defined as the sum of our experiences) in terms of the simplest definable components and then to figure out how these parts fit together in complex forms.Functionalism - stressed the importance of empirical, rational thought over an experimental, trial-and-error philosophy. concerned more with the capability of the mind than with the process of thought. Psychoanalysis - Aims to treat mental illness throughinvestigations of the interactions between theconscious and the unconscious elements of the mind.Behaviourism - The theory that human behavior can be explained in terms of conditioning, without appeal to thoughts or feelings, and that mental disorders are best treated by changing behavior patterns.Gestalt Psychology - Looks at the human mind and behaviour as a whole rather than trying to break them into smaller, individual parts.Humanistic Psychology - Emphasizes study of the whole person and looks at human behaviour not only from the eyes of the observer, but also the person doing the behaving.Cognitive Psychology - The branch of psychology that studies mental processes like how people think, learn,perceive, and remember.

Key TermsPersonality - A person's pattern of thoughts, feelings, and behaviours.Unconscious - A collection of thoughts, feelings, urges and memories that are outside our conscious awareness.Id - The part of our personality that is made up of unconscious psychic energy that works to satisfy basic urges, needs, and desires. Operates based on the pleasure principle.Ego - The unconscious part of personality that mediates the demands of the id and the superego, achieving balance between the two.Superego - The part of our personality that is created by internalized ideals brought on by our parents and society. Wants to behave morally rather than realistically, opposite the id.Self-Actualization - A human need to achieve personal growth that motivates behaviour.Persuasion - When a person tries to convince others to change their attitude or behaviour regarding an issue.

Sigmund FreudBorn in 1856, Freud contributed by creatingpsychoanalysis, identifying three states of consciousness, as well as the structure of the mind. The Oedipus complex was also something he created. He also added to the field of psychology defense mechanisms.

Carl JungBorn in 1875, Jung has contributed by developing concepts of collective unconscious, archetypes, and extraversion and intraversion. He also created jungian therapy, which deals with the significance of dreams and fantasies.

Ivan PavlovBorn in 1849, he is most commonly known for his work in classical conditioning, Also known as Pavlovian or respondent conditoning,which teaches that everything has the ability to learn, as long as there are rewarding stimulants that trigger a response.

Carl RogersBorn in 1902, he agreed with the main assumptions of Abraham Maslow, but added that for a person to "grow", they need an environment that provides them with genuineness, acceptance, and empathy. Best known for his client-centered therapy.

Erik EriksonBorn in 1902, he is most known for his theory of psychosocial developement. The stages of psychosocial developement are trust vs. mistrust, autonomy vs. shame and doubt, initiative vs. guilt, industry vs. inferiority, identity vs. confusion, intimacy vs. isolation, generativity vs. stagnation, and integrity vs. despair.

Abraham MaslowBorn in 1908, he contributed by creating the hierarchy of needs, as well as by being one of the founding fathers of humanistic psychology. He looked at the positive sides of mental health. He improved mental health by seeking personal growth.

Max WertheimerBorn in 1880, he contributed by being one of the three founders of gestalt psychology, as well as creating the "Gestalt laws of perceptual organization". He also created the Phi Phenomenon.

John B. WatsonBorn in 1878, he is best known for having been the one who established the school of behaviourism. Conditioning and behaviour modification are still used today very often. This is used to pattern a person's behaviour to get rid of unwanted traits or get wanted ones.


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