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Flashcards in Approaches Deck (20):

Explain what Wundt meant my introspection

A systematic method used to study the mind by breaking up conscious awareness into basic structures of thoughts, images and sensations


Define what is meant by the term psychology

The scientific study of the human mind and its functions, affecting behaviour in a given context


Define what is meant by the term science

Acquiring knowledge through systematic and objective investigation to discover general laws


Explain the emergence of psychology as a science

William Wundt opened the world's first experimental laboratory, it marked a turning point, psychology's emergence as a separate and distinct scientific discipline.
Wundt showed that empirical methods could be applied to the study of mental processes. It is objective and measures quantitative details so that patterns can be examined and inferences from the result are credible. Lab experiments show complete control of the variables as its standardised and can be replicated


Explain one assumption of the behaviourist approach

They suggested that basic processes that govern learning are the same in all species, meaning that animals could replace humans as experimental subjects.


Outline two reinforcements suggested by the behaviourist approach

1) classical conditioning: learning through association demonstrated by pavlov and revealed dogs could be conditioned to salivate to the sound of a bell

2) operant condition: learning through reinforcement. Skinner suggested three types.
• positive : receiving a reward when certain behaviour is performed
• negative : avoids unpleasantry things
• punishment : unpleasant consequence of behaviour


How to compare the behaviourist approach to other approaches?

Nurture: Humans are born as blank slates and behaviour is learnt from the environment via classical and operant conditioning

Nomothetic: aims to create universal laws as behaviour is the result of stimulus-response associations

Scientific: uses scientific methods of investigation e.g highly controlled lab experiments that only focus on observable behaviour


Outline the social learning approach.

Modelling: someone (a model) must carry out the behaviour to be learned e.g your sibling or beyonce (media)

Imitation: copying models behaviour

Identification: extent an individual relates to model and how similar they feel to model and would likely experience same outcomes in that situation.

Vicarious Reinforcement: individuals learn consequences of action and adjust their behaviour accordingly

Role of meditational purposes: observer must form mental representations of the behaviour displayed by model and probable consequences in terms of expected future outcomes


Outline Bandura's research into SLT

Procedure: experiment involving children who observed aggressive or non-aggressive adult models and then tested for imitative learning in absence of model. Half were exposed to aggressive adult models interacting aggressively with BoBo doll e.g saying POW, striking it. vice versa for non-aggressive.

Findings: children observing aggressive model reproduced physically and verbally aggressive behaviour resembling model. No aggression shown by non-aggressive model.


Evaluate SLT in terms of nurture, nomothetic, scientific

Nurture: behaviour is learnt through environment through observation and imitation of models in a social context.

Nomothetic: attempts to establish general laws e.g through vicarious reinforcement

Mostly Scientific: uses scientific method e.g lab experiment but also takes into consideration meditational processes which are subjective


Outline the biological approach in reference to the key assumptions and Charles Darwin

Key assumptions:
The brain and the mind are the identical, biochemical imbalances can influence behaviour, behaviour can be inherited and brain psychology can affect behaviour.

Darwin suggested natural selection: characteristics that are not suited to a species’ environment will die out as it struggles to survive, and with time will evolve over generations so that only adaptive characteristics remain in future offspring


Outline the biological approach in reference to genotype, phenotype and

Genotype refers to the genetic code written in the DNA of an individual's cells
Phenotype refers to the physical appearance that results from this inherited information


Compare (evaluate) the biological approach in reference to nature, determinism and real world application

Nature: behaviour is a result of innate biological functions e.g genes

Biological Determinism: behaviour is controlled by internal biological factors e.g genes

Real World Application: drug therapies have been used for mental illnesses e.g SSRI's to treat depression.


Outline the Cognitive approach

Studies information processing and has found that the scheme is a framework that helps organise info in the brain. They are useful as they provide shortcuts when interpreting huge amounts of info.

Role of theoretical and computer models: models such as the MSM

Cognitive neuroscience: Use of scanning techniques eg to locate different types of memory in different areas of the brain leading to treatment for memory problems


Compare Cognitive approach in relation to nomothetic, idiographic, nature, nurture and real world application

Both Nature and Nurture: behaviour is a product of information processing but it is modified by experience

Both Nomothetic and Idiographic: attempts to establish general laws of cognitive processing however, it uses idiographic methods such as the case study of patient HM

Real World Application: talking therapies e.g. CBT to treat depression and anxiety and aim to treat the cause not just the symptoms. Also practices that affect the legal system e.g. Cognitive interview


Outline the Psychodynamic approach (Freud) in relation to the role of the unconscious, the id, ego and superego

Role of the unconscious: part of the mind that was inaccessible to conscious thought. For e.g. Freudian slips show that behaviours not controlled consciously but are the product of the unconscious mind reveals itself in the slip of the tongue

Structure of personality
ID: operates in the unconscious and is the pleasure principle which demands immediate gratification
EGO: mediated between demands of the id and reality of the world. Compromises between impulsive demands of the id and the moralistic demands of superego
SUPEREGO: conscience is the internalisation of social rules and ego-ideal is what a person strives towards


Outline the Psychodynamic approach in relation to defence mechanisms and psychosexual stages

DM: unconscious strategies that protect our conscious mind from anxiety
Repression: blocking unacceptable thoughts
Denial: refusal to accept reality avoiding dealing with painful feelings of event
Displacement: redirecting thoughts or feelings on a helpless victim or object when they are unable to express them in the presence of the person it should be directed to

Psychosexual Stages: 1)oral: child expresses sexual energy e.g. sucking 2)anal: becomes aware of reality 3)phallic: child experiences pleasure in genital area 4)latent: earlier conflicts (stages) are repressed. 5)genital: sexual desires become conscious


Compare Psychosexual stage in relation to nature, psychic determinism and scientific

Mostly nature: behaviour is a product of innate drives but shaped by early childhood experiences

Psychic Determinism: behaviour is determined by unconscious drives and early childhood experiences

Not Scientific: Examines concepts which cannot be empirically tested as it relies on subjective reports and interpretation


Outline the Humanistic approach in reference to free will and Maslow's hierarchy of needs

Free Will: people have full conscious control over their destiny

Hierarchy of Needs:
1) self actualisation - morality, lack of prejudice
2) esteem - confidence, achievement
3) Love/Belonging - family, friends, sexual
4) Safety - security of employment and body
5) Physiological - breathing, food, sleep


Compare the Humanistic Approach in relation to free will, idiographic and real world application

Free Will: humans control their own environment and are capable of change

Idiographic: focuses on subjective human experience and makes no attempt to create general laws as it believes all humans are unique

Real World application: rogers' person-centred therapy help people to cope with the problems of everyday living. However it's best applied to mild psychological conditions e.g. anxiety