Foundations Of Psych Essay

1029 WordsApr 14, 20125 Pages
Foundations of Psychology How do you describe how the human mind and behavior works? Well, that is a debate that started long ago after psychology was described as a science separate from philosophy and behavior. There are six major schools of thought, or perspectives, in psychology that I am going to discuss and they include, structuralism, functionalism, psychodynamic, behaviorist, cognitive, and the evolutionary perspectives. The Major Schools of Thought Founded by Wilhelm Wundt and advocated by Edward Titchener, the earliest school of thought in psychology was of structuralism. Structuralism attempted to uncover the basic elements of consciousness through introception to analyze the inner processes in the human mind (Kowalski, R., & Westen, D. 2005). Shortly after the structuralism perspective was developed, other theorists were developing new perspectives to try and describe how the human mind works. Unlike structuralism, functionalism emphasized the function of psychological processes in which they serve. Functionalism came shortly after structuralism and was founded by William James; James, like most functionalists, believed that, “consciousness exists because it serves a function, and the task of the psychologist is to understand that function.” (Kawalski, R., & Westen, D. 2005). Current Psychological Perspectives There are four current psychological thinking perspectives that are used that contribute to psychological knowledge. They are the psychodynamic perspective, behaviorist perspective, cognitive perspective, and the evolutionary perspective. Other perspectives have been used; the four discussed are merely guides for psychological investigations. The psychodynamic perspective is driven by three premises; a person’s actions are determined by the way their thoughts are connected to their minds, many mental events occur

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