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Foundations Of Psychology Essay

927 words - 4 pages

Foundations of Psychology
John Stafford
University of Phoenix


There are several major approaches to psychological study with several other disciplines falling under these primary approaches. Ranging from psychodynamic to evolutionary perspectives, and rarely sharing a unified paradigm, psychology has advanced since the late 1800s to be a wide-ranging field of human study.
Foundations of Psychology

The study of psychology found roots in philosophy. However, Wilhelm Wundt, who founded the first psychological laboratory, led the recognition of psychology as a science in 1879. In the mid-to-late 1940s standards were put into place for the doctoral programs designed ...view middle of the document...

Psychodynamic Foundations of Psychology
The psychodynamic perspective of psychology is most commonly related to Sigmund Freud (1856 – 1939), who surmised that the primary motivation of human life. Psychodynamic perspective helps understand an individual’s conscious, rational thinking, and unconscious motivation. This includes how the human mind adapts to oppressive forces, and lasting effects of traumatic situations (Rasmussen & Salhani, 2010).
Cognitive Foundations of Psychology
According to Genter (2010) “Cognitive science is defined principally by the set of problems it addresses and the set of tools it uses.” Over the past 50 years cognitive psychology has produced a considerable amount of data concerned with specific elements of the cognitive architecture of the human mind (Cornoldi, 2006). This is done by various experiments including intakes, and assessments that help identify the patient’s primary symptoms, and the environmental, cultural, and biological factors contributing to them (Dowd, Chen, & Arnold, 2010).
Biological Foundations of Psychology
Charles Darwin (1859) introduced the idea that evolution and genetics both play a role in human behavior through natural selection. Many behaviors observed by clinicians can be attributed to an individual’s genetic makeup; however, genetics are just a portion of the biological foundation. In addition to genetics, there are environmental conditions and physical trauma that can influence behavior. Addiction to drugs or alcohol, physical injury, or exposures to chemicals are factors in biological studies (Harper, 1981).

An individual interested in becoming a psychologist needs to understand the history of psychology, and the various perspectives that form the foundations of psychological beliefs. Understanding each perspective will give an individual the knowledge he or she will need to make correct decisions relating to the course of study he or she wants to focus on. Understanding that psychology did not develop by employing paradigms, but in fact developed as...

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