Schools of Psychology

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Has both a traditional and a scientific history. Animism attributed natural events to mystic spirits

within objects and organisms. Greek philosophers had rejected supernatural forces

and developed philosophy as a non religious type of orderly reasoning or speculation. As a science, psychology started only in the latter

part of the nineteenth century.

Derived from two Greek words, psyche (soul) and

logos (discourse). Psychology was thus literally a study of the soul. About four centuries ago, mental philosophers began

to translate psyche as mind and psychology was then defined as a study of the mind. It was eventually replaced by the definition of

psychology as the science of behavior.

Psychologists have different ideas about what psychology should or should not include, about what it should emphasize, and about what research methods are best. When a large number of psychologists strongly support a certain view it is called a school.

Wilhelm Wundt Started the first psychological laboratory.

Edward Titchener

Introspective Psychology or Elementarism Psychology as the study of conscious experience. They

started with the principle that all complex substances could be analyzed through their component elements (hence, the name elementarism). Titchener believed that sensation and thoughts are structures of mind. The subject reports sensations, feelings and images

through his own sensory experiences called the method of introspection, or mental self analysis (hence, the name Introspective Psychology). By

1940, introspection had disappeared from the scientific psychology.

Cold Crisp Sweet


John Dewey

James R. Angell

William James

It is not the structure that should be of prime

importance to the psychologist but the function of the matter the functionalists focused on the operations or functions of conscious activity (e.g. thinking, learning), while structuralists studied the so-called elements (e.g. ideas, sensations) of consciousness. Through introspection, the use of instruments to record

and measure; and objective manifestations of mind, the total behavior of an individual is studied including the interest in the functions served by the things an individual does. The functionalists redefined psychology as the study of mans adjustments to his environment.

John Watson

E. L. Thorndike

It is a purely objective experimental branch of natural

science. Its theoretical goal is the prediction and control of behavior. Introspection forms no essential part of its methods. It defines Psychology as the science of behavior and not

of consciousness. It denies the existence of instinct or of inborn tendencies, but insists on learned behavior. It

is psychology based upon stimulus-response connections. The behaviorists believe that there can be no response without stimulus.


P. Pavlov, a Russian physiologist and his experiments on conditioned responses established the phenomena of conditioning, a method of behaviorism.

Max Wertheimer

Kurt Koffka

Wolfgang Kohler

A German word translated as configuration, or form, pattern,

or organization.

The whole is more than the sum of all its parts. Stated that many aspects of perception can not be interpreted

singly as unitary aspects isolated from the component whole. understanding of learning, memory and problem solving.

The Gestalt psychologists have contributed much to the


advocated phenomenology (a method of free introspection where we interpret stimuli in what is seen in relation to other aspects of the whole).

The Rubin Goblet illustrates a basic concept from Gestalt psychology: the figure-ground distinction. When a gestalt is formed (perceived) it becomes a figure (a thing apart, an entity or object). A figure is always backed up by a surrounding ground. With Rubin's goblet, the goblet and faces take turns being figure and ground. When you see the goblet, the faces disappear into a black background. When you see the faces, the goblet disappears into a white background. A pattern cannot be seen as figure and ground at the same time. Yet the pattern in the external worldthe stimulusdoes not change. Only the perception of it changes.

Sigmund Freud, Alfred Adler and Carl Jung They insist on human desires and primitive impulses as the central

factors of behavior. These desires are unacceptable wishes of childhood, principally

libidinal (sexual) repressed in our subconscious because they are socially unacceptable. These repressed desires press to find expression in dreams, slips of

speech and in unconscious mannerisms. Free Association, a method of psychoanalysis wherein the disturbed

subject may find catharsis (a cleansing out thru verbal expression) these libidinal wishes can be searched out from ones subconscious.

William McGougall He believed that objects, movements, and behavior have

a definite purpose. This psychology is sometimes called Hormic psychology

because according to McDougall, the secretion of ones hormones is responsible for the motive force that propels one to strive towards the attainment of ones goals.

Carl Rogers and Abraham Maslow Stresses the persons capacity for personal growth,

freedom to choose his own destiny and positive qualities, also, we have the ability to direct and control our future. This approach tells us that we are the ones in control of

our lives and not our experiences or our environment as with other approaches.

Herbert Simon Tries to examine how we process, store and utilize

information and how those information influences our behavior. Information Processing is the most widely adopted

cognitive approach. Psychologists of this approach study how individuals process information, how it is perceived, stored and retrieved for future use.

Aristotle, Edward Thorndike, John Locke and Thomas

Hobbes Concerned

with the factors of learning such as remembering and thinking.

It starts with the philosophical concept that learning is

the formation of bonds or connections in the nervous system. Man is the greatest learner because he makes the greatest

numbers of connections.

Gives emphasis on the brain and the nervous system as

vital to understanding behavior, emotions and thought. For behavioral neuroscientists, memory is written in

chemicals. The memory informs the nerve cell to send out chemical

command. The chemicals then serve as the ink to encode memory


emphasis to the importance of adaptation, reproduction, and survival of the fittest in explaining behavior.


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