Approaches in psychology as level
Terms in this set (30)
Origin of psychology
Scientific methods were regarded as the only relaiable methods for discovering reliable knowledge about the world. Wundt belived all aspects of nature could be studies scientifically. He broke down behaviours of sensation and perception into their basic elements using introspection, whihc enables us to observe our inner world. He argues that mental processes could be observed systematically. His approach was based on the philosophical view of empiricism which is based on the auumption of determinism and that it is possible to predict how humans behvave in certain conditions. The scientific method uses systematic and replicable methods.
Evaluation of the origins of psychology
-self corrective--it can be refined/abandoned
-replicable and empirical methods as they rely on determinsm to find the cause of behaviours
-objective and systematic methods
-lack relation to natural environment as the scientific methods focus on objectivity and control creating contrived situations and therefore the behaviour may have been distorted and an accurate observation not achieved
-Wundts methods are unreliable as they rely on the participants processes which were considered unobservable at the time. therefore the introspective results were not reliably reproducible in other lab based studies. His methods lack accuracy andmay not havee actually observed intropection
-introspection is not accurate as participants may be unaware of the factors which influence their conscious behaviour and attitudes
Learning theory: key assumptions
-learning through conditioning
-learn though stimuli-response
-ALL BEHAVIOUR IS LEARNED
...Learning through association. A neutral stimulus (mother) is consistently paired with an unconditioned stimulus(food) so that it eventually takes on the properties of this stimulus and is able to produce a conditioned stimulus and produces a conditioned response which is the same as the conditioned response (pleasure). -->Pavlovs dog
Timing of associations is classical conditioning
-No clear timing=no conditioning as NS cannot be used to predict UCS
-Associations made but then stopped=extinction as the conditioned response is not permanent
-Associations started again after being stopped for a considerable time=spontaneous recovery as the link between the conditioned stimuli and unconditioned stimulus are made much more quickly.
Learning through consequences. It was devised by Burrhus skinner who invented the 'Skinner box'
Behaviour produces a consequence that is satisfying and/or pleasant eg.giving an animal food after it does a trick well. This consequence then makes the behaviour more likely to occur
The aversive stimulus is removed so the organism does not experience their negative feelings towards it. eg. turning an alarm off to escape from the unpleasant ringing so the person return to their pre-alarm state. The behaviour is likely to be repeated
Scheduels of reinforcement
-continuous-- every time producing a steady response rate and behaviour will extinguish very quickly if reinforcement withheld
-fixed interval--set times--uneven response--extinguishes quite quickly
-variable interval--varying time intervals--reponse rate is high and extincion occurs gradually
-fixed ratio--after a certain number of responses--uneven response and extinction is quite rapid
-variable ratio--varying number of responses-- extinction occurs quite gradually
Evaluation of learning theory
-Studies use experimental methods and controls meaning they are scientific and cause and effect conclusions can be drawn--repeatable--similar results form different researchers
-Practical applications-conditioning can be used in therapies eg. operant in TEPs and classical is systematic desensitisation
-Support from Watson and Reyner (Little Albert)
-Lab studies using animals-lack validity as they are not testing a real world scenario
-Some behaviours may be instinctive/biological and so not learnt but may be mistaken for learnt behaviour. Also some behaviour may be as a result of genetics
-Ignores Humanistic approach which sees that behaviour is under our conscious control and we have free will.
Social learning theory
-Learning through observations of models
-Both specific and general emotional states can be modeled
-No reinforcement occurs in observational learning
-But the likelihood of behaviour being imitated is dependent on the consequences of the behaviour
The model carries out the behaviour/attitude that is observed and imitated. They can be live or symbolic.
The extent to which an individual relates to a model based on how similar they are so they would experience similar outcomes. eg. If they are the same sex imitation is more likely to occur.
Internal processes take place to form representations of behaviour and consequences. If expectation of positive outcomes is greater than the expectation of negative outcomes then the behaviour may arise in the future.
This depends on:
-Characteristics of model
Individuals learn the consequences of a behaviour through rewards or punishments. They then make judgments on the likelihood of experiencing the behaviour themselves.
Experiencing the consequences of a behaviour directly to determine the likelihood of portraying the behaviour again.
Key study: BANDURA
To see if children imitated aggressive or non aggressive behaviour shown by a model.
Half the children were exposed to adult models acting aggressively towards a life sized Bobodoll. The other half were exposed to non aggressive adults. The children became frustrated after being shown toys they weren't allowed to play with and were then shown the Bobodoll.
Children who observed aggressive behaviour reproduced physically and verbally aggressive behaviour and 1/3 of them repeated the models verbal responses. Children who observed non-aggressive behaviour showed virtually no aggression towards the doll and non of them made verbally aggressive remarks.
Imitation occurs when exposed to a certain type of behaviour by a model. If they are the same gender imitation is more likely to occur and they identify with the model. Also high levels of imitation occur if they are rewarded for their behaviour.
Evaluation of social learning theory
-This theory is a more complex explanation than classical and operant conditioning as it doesnt just incorporate association and reinforcement but also cognitive processes through mental representations and imitation when the observer is trying to think if they have the ability to perform the behaviour.
-Ignores biological factors such as hormones eg. testosterone which has been linked to aggression and so it could be these factors that actually cause the behaviour rather than just environmental factors as the theory suggests.
-Bandura's study in 1961 can be used to support this theory as his findings showed that when children were exposed to a particular behaviour exhibited by a model they imitated it and the likelihood of them reproducing the behaviour was strengthened if they were the same sex or if they were rewarded for their behaviour, showing imitation, identification, modelling vicarious reinforcement. however this experiment is flawed as the children could just be showing demand characteristics rather than aggression as the Bobodoll require you to hit/kick it in order to play with is as the aim is to knock it down.
-Could be seen as deterministic as it suggests that models will always influence behaviour but it ignores the fact that sometimes we dont change our behaviour. As we often see models on TV/social media but do not imitate their behaviour or the behaviour may occur weeks later but it can not be proved that the model was the cause of this.
-There is a problem of causality. Seigel and McCarrick suggest that young people who have deviant attitudes would seek out peers with similar attitudes and behaviour.
The mind is the main influence on our behaviour and what we do is determined by our perception of events and thought processes. eg. two people can see the same event but different thought processes will lead to different behaviour-->someone may run away when they see a spider but someone else may pick it up
The information processing model
This explains how we receive, process and respond to info. The mind is a major influence on our behaviour and it works as an INPUT-OUTPUT system:
The mind takes in info from the environment, processes it and the output is BEHAVIOUR.
The computer analogy
Info is received via keyboard/disk (senses) and is stored and processed by running a program (hear/see) the info is then outputted via an image on a screen or a print out (behaviour)
The role of schemas
Cognitive frameworks that help organise and interpret info in the brain. they guide our expectations form a given situation/event/person and subsequently our behaviour in order to meet those expectations. They are a short cut to interpret a situation and alter our behaviour accordingly. They also help with filling in the gaps in the absence of full information.
Bugelski and Alampay
'The rat man' experiment. Two groups of participants shown sequence of pics either with a no. of different faces or animals. They were then shown the ambiguous figure the 'rat man'. Ppts who saw a sequence of faces were more likely to see the image as a man and ppts ho saw animals were more likely to perceive the figure as a rat.
Methods and the emergence of cognitive neuroscience
MRI's allow us to see structural damage by using magnets to produce detailed images of the targeted area. PET scans (position emission tomography) allow us to see what parts of the brain are active during certain behaviour.
Paul Broca identified how damage to the frontal lobe could impair speech production but these individuals are aware they are not forming full sentences. Wetericks area is involved in speaking coherent sentences and understanding speech if its damaged an individual cannot understand sentences and they dont know that they are not making sense.
Evaluation of cognitive approach
-Many applications eg. the cognitive approach in psychopathology has been able to explain dysfunctional behaviour in terms of faulty thinking, leading to the development of treatments for illnesses such as depression. These have shown to be successful in some mental disorders suggesting that the emphasis on mental processes in this explanation is valid.
-considered a scientific approach due to the experiments with human participants which lead to the creation of theories and models, meaning the conclusions are based on far more than common sense and introspection. and so the approach can be seen as a systematic, objective and rigorous way to reach conclusions about how the mind works.
- There are major differences between the human mind and computer models such as motivation and emotion.
-Doesnt tell us why cognitive processes take place and ignores the role of motivation and emotion perhaps due to over dependence on the computer analogy. There are fundamental differences between them; make mistakes, forget, ignore info ecct.
The biological approach
-How biological structures and processes in the body impact our behaviour
Genetic basis of behaviour
Can be investigated by;
monozygotic--100% DNA-one fertilised cell splits in two--->identical
dizygotic-50% DNA-two seperate eggs-non identical
Concordance rates-extent to which twins share similar traits/characteristics
resemblence between family as a result of genetics and envionment but with alcoholism there is a suggestion of a biological predisposition
Comparing a trait/characteristic between children and heir biological and adoptive parents
Artificially selecting animals for a particular trait
-recombination of genes provides genetic variability
-Genotype=potential for characteristic
-twins have different phenotypes
-recessive--need two copies for characteristic to show
-dominant--only need one
-heterozygous--genotype consists of two different genes eg.Bb
-homozygous--genotype consists of two of the same genes eg.BB
The changes in inherited characteristics in a biological population over successive generations
animals with a particular trait have an advantage, survive, reproduce, pass on gene to offspring
Principle of diversity (VARIETY), interation (ADAPT AND FIT IN) and differential amplification (REPRODUCE/DIE OUT)
females have limited eggs, males have an abundance of sperm.
NEURONS AND THE NERVOUS SYSTEM:
CNS-brain and spinal cord
PNS-somatic and autonomic nervous systems
Carries messages using neruons which transmit impulses in the form of electrical signals
Cerebrum-makes up 85% of mass
Cerebral cortex-high odrder functions eg.thought and language
Cerebrum is divided into two hemispheres which is then divided into four lobes
Neurotransmitters are released when a nerve impulse reaches the end of a neuron and these travel across a synapse. Excitatory neurotransmitters trugger nerve impulses eg. Dopamine. Inhibitory neurotransmitters inhibit nerve impulses in order to calm the brain and balance mood eg. Serotonin
-produced by endocrine glands such as pituitary gland which make up endocrine system.
-secreted directly into bloodstream where they travel to 'target cells' and stimulate receptors on the surface of cells causing a physiological reaction.
evaluation of biological approach
-Scientific due to most methods being experimental and highly controlled, replicable and valid so that the results can be reproduced. Sophisticated imaging eg.PET and EEG recording techniques lead to increased precision and objectivity.
-Applications-provides clear predictions of the effects of neurotransmitters and neurochemical imbalance in depression leading to effective drug treatments. reserch int circadian rhythm led to improvements in working conditions.
-Reductionist-broekn down into smallest, simplest components; genes, neurons, hormones. eg.low levels of serotonin cause OCD. Other factors can influence behaviour; cognitive (though processes) emotional (mood) and cultural (living conditions)
-problems with evolutionary explanations- natural selection doesnt explain all behaviours-homosexuals do not have the need to reproduce and pass on their genes to their offpspring.