what is psychology

what is psychology and what does it mean to you

The discipline concerned with behavior and mental processes and haw they are affected by an organism’s physical state, mental state, and external environment
The study of psychology should be:


what are some of the major perspectives in psychology

  • develop in 19th century
  • from speculation to science
    • wilhelm wundt
    • established the first laboratory to study of psychology
    • campaigned to make psychology an independent discipline
    • introspection
  • development of psychology
    • structuralism
    • functionalism
  • development of psychology the unconscious mind
    • who?sigmund freud
    • unconscious processes influencing behavior
    • unconscious conflict related to sexuality plays a central role ibehavior
    • controversial notions caused debate/resistance
  • The Development of Psychology: Behaviorism
    • John B. Watson – Psychologist turns advertiser
    • abandoned the study of consciousness
    • Focused on overt & observable behavior
    • B.F. Skinner
    • Environmental factors determine behavior
    • Responses that lead to positive outcomes are repeated; responses that lead to negative outcomes are not repeated
    • Controversy: beyond Freedom and Dignity
  • The Development of Psychology: Humanism
    • Humanistic perspective
    • Charges that the perspectives were de-humanizing
    • Carl Rogers & Abraham Maslow
    • Unique qualities of humans: freedom & personal growth
    • Self-Actualization and hierarchy of needs
  • The Development of Psychology: The Biological Basis of Behavior
    • In terms of physiological processes
    • James Olds: Electrical stimulation of the brain evokes emotional responses in animals
    • Roger Sperry: Left and right brain specialization
  • The Development of Psychology: Cognitive Psychology – The study of mental processes
    • Cognitive psychology – Cognition: mental processes involved in acquiring knowledge
      • 1950’s & 60’s – Piaget, Chomsky, & Simon
      • Application of scientific methods to studying internal mental events
      • Systemic approach to understand mental processes
  • The Development of Psychology: Natural Section & Evolutionary Psychology
    • natural selection
  • Development of Modern Psychology – An interactive historical overview Manual

different research methods in psychology





  1. observe
  2. correlational research-> prediction
  3. experimental research
  4. applied ressearch
  • research in psychology
    • hypothesis
    • operational definitions
  • major methods in psychology
    • descriptive
      • case studies
        • detailed descriptions of
      • observational studies
        • naturalistic observation
        • laboratory observation
      • psychological tests
        • standardization
        • reliability
        • validity
      • surveys
        • Questionnaires and interviews that ask people about experiences, attitudes, or op1n1ons
        • Requires attention to proper sampling procedures
        • Popular polls and surveys rely on volunteers
    • correlational
      • A descriptive study that looks for a consistent relationship between two phenomena
      • correlation
      • a numerical measure of the strength and direction of the relationship between two things – variables
      • characteristics of behavior or experiences that can be measured or described by a numeric scale
      • manipulated, assessed in scientific studies
      • positive correlations
      • negative correlations
  • experiment
    • control
    • random
    • experimental

A detailed description of a particular individual being studied or treated is called ________.

  1. a naturalistic observation

B. a single-blind study

C. a representative sample

D. a case study

A negative correlation means that high values of one variable are associated with low values of the other___

Experimenters can justify the use of deception because it may be necessary for the experiment to work.

Freud said phobias were _repressed conflicts_, whereas Watson said phobias were __learned_.

The class is playing a game of Jeopardy! and it is your turn. “I’ll take Specialties in Psychology for $300.” The revealed answer is, “These psychological professionals work with situations in which environmental conditions may have an impact on mental health.” Just before the buzzer sounds, what will you say?

What is a psychiatric social worker?

The goals of psychology are to describe, explain, predict and control behavior

When you watch dogs play in the park or watch how your professors conduct their classes, you are engaging in a form of naturalistic observation

Which perspective focuses on free will and self-actualization?   humanism

Who was an early proponent of functionalism?  william james

Single-blind study is an experiment in which participants do not know if they are in the experimental or the control group, but the experimenters do know which participants are part of which group.

psychology is the science of behavior and mental processes.

A psychological psychologist studies the biological basis of behavior, thoughts, and emotions.

Which of the following is not one of the enduring issues in the field of psychology?


Who founded Behaviorism?


Wundt is a structuralist

Cognitive psychology emphasizes:

Your Answer: the study of psychology in the broadest sense, i.e., thinking, feeling, learning, remembering, and making decisions.

The processes involved in learning, memory, sensation, perception, and cognition are investigated by which types of psychologists?  Experimental

Freud use the research method: case study method

Which describes the Behaviorist school of thought?

Studies observable and measurable actions.

Gestalt theory emphasizes

our tendency to see patterns.

Psychology is a complex science that relies on rigorous scientific methods to understand the mental processes and behaviors of individuals.

There is agreement among psychologists about the causes of human behaviors, mental processes, and traits.

This would be impossible. If so, there would not be a need for the many theoretical perspectives All theories explain some aspect of an individual well, but no one theory can explain all mental processes and behaviors of individuals.

Wilhelm Wundt’s method of having trained observers report on their own sensations, mental images, and emotional reactions was called


Functionalism was an early psychological approach that emphasized the purpose of behavior and consciousness.

The learning perspective emphasizes how the environment and experience affect a person’s or animal’s actions.

Evolutionary psychology is a new area of specialty that focuses on the influence of genes on the adaptive function of past and present common human behaviors.

Psychiatrists are medical doctors who can diagnose and treat individuals with emotional difficulties.

Applied psychology is the study of psychological issues that have direct practical significance.


D. A psychological approach that emphasizes the interaction between bodily events and changes associated with behaviors, mental processes, and emotions.  


B. A psychological approach that emphasizes social and cultural influences on an individual’s way of thinking and behaving.  

Cognitive perspective 

A. A psychological approach that focuses on mental processes and how they influence aspects such as perception, memory, emotions, and problem solving skills.  


C. A psychological approach that focuses on how experiences and environmental factors influence behavior.  


E. This psychological approach is concerned with the inner forces and conflicts of the unconscious mind. 

Which type of research method allows a researcher to determine cause and effect relationships? the experimental method

In an experiment to test the effects of stress on performance, the independent variable is stress.

An organized system of assumptions and principles that purports to explain certain phenomena and how they are related is called a theory

One problem with experimental research is that the conditions that can be controlled and manipulated by researchers may influence behavior or mental processes in a way that doesn’t occur naturally in real life. For this reason, many psychologists have called for more field research

What research method is used to obtain information about attitudes, opinions, and experiences directly from individuals survey

A precise definition of a term in a hypothesis is called an operational definition.

A study in which the researcher systematically observes, measures, and records behavior without interfering with the behavior is called an observational study.

The ability of a test to measure what it was designed to measure is called validity

A controlled test of a hypothesis in which the researcher manipulates one variable to discover its effect on another is called the experiment

An inactive substance or fake treatment used as a control in an experiment or given by a medical practitioner to a patient is called a placebo

An experiment in which neither the subjects nor the individuals running the study know which subjects are in the control group and which are in the experimental group until after the results are tallied is called a double-blind study.


Instruments or procedures used to measure and evaluate various aspects of mental processes and behavior such as personality, emotional states, and cognitive abilities  


A controlled test of a hypothesis in which the researcher manipulates one variable in an attempt to discover the effect it has on another variable.  

observational study 

A research method in which researchers carefully observes and records behavior without interfering with the behavior.  

Correlational study 

A descriptive study in which the relationship between two variables is statistically measured.  

Case study 

A detailed description of an individual based on formal psychological testing and/or observation.  


A research method used to obtain information directly from individuals about their attitudes, opinions, and experiences using questionnaires or interviews. 

A psychologist who studies how memory changes over the lifespan is conducting basic research.

If a test that is supposed to measure comprehension of geometry does in fact measure geometric test knowledge, that test is said to be valid.

In an experiment, the variable that the experimenter predicts will be affected by the independent variable is dependent variable.

What statistical technique tells how clustered or spread out individual scores are around the mean standard deviation

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