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process of thinking deeply and actively, asking questions, and evaluating the evidence.
Wondering why things are the way they are.
Scientists are skeptical, questioning what "everybody knows".
- Empirical Method - gaining knowledge through observation of events and logical reasoning.
- Seeing things as they are, not how we would like them to be.
focus on the body, especially the brain and nervous system.
- Scientific study of the structure, function, development, genetics and biochemistry of the nervous system.
emphasizes the scientific study of observational behavioural responses and their environmental destrminants.
Visible interactions with the environment; behaviours NOT thoughts or feelings
Behaviourists - John B. Watson, B.F. Skinner
Dominated 1st half of 20th Century.
Skinner - psychology should be about what people do, actions & behaviours, not with what can't be seen, thoughts, feelings & goals
Not every behaviourist TODAY accepts the earlier behaviourists' rejection of thought processes "cognition"
emphasiszes unconsious though, conflict between biological drives (ie. for sex) and society's demands, and early childhood family experiences.
Sigmund Freud - "founding father" of psychodynamic approach.
Psychoanalysis - unlocking a person's unconscious conflicts by talking with the individual about his or her childhood memories, dreams, thoughts and feelings.
Today's psychodynamic theories place less emphasis on sexual drives, and more on cultural or social experience as determinants of behaviour.
emphasizes a person's positive qualities, capacity for positive growth, and freedom to choose one's destiny.
People have the ability to control their own lives and are not simply controlled by their environment.
altruism - unselfish concern for other people's well being.
emphasizes the mental processes involved in knowing, how we direct our attention, percieve, remember, think and solve problems.
Why we remember some things for only a short time, but others for a lifetime.
An individual's mental processes are in control of behaviour through memories, perceptions, images and thinking.
uses evolutionary ideas such as adaptation, reproduction and natural selection as the basis for explaining specific human behaviours.
David Buss - evolution molds our physical features (body shape) also influences our decision making, level of agressiveness, fears and mating patterns.
Even those who disagree with the applications of evolutionary approach still agree with the general principles.
examines the way in which social and cultural environments influence behaviour.
Focuses not only on comparisons of behaviour across countries but also on behaviour of individuals from different ethnic and cultural groups within a country.
1. Observing some phenomenon
2. Formulating hypothseis and predictions
3. Testing through empirical research
4. Drawing conclusions
5. Evaluating conclusions
Observing Some Phenomenon
Variable- anything that can change
Happiness, some people are genuinely happier than others.
Theory - a broad idea or set of closely related ideas that attempts to explain observations.
Why certain things have happened, and making predictions about future observations.
Formulating Hypotheses and Predictions
Hypothesis - an educated guess that derives logically from a theory.
A prediction that can be tested.
If more & more hypotheses related to a theory turn out to be true, the theory gains credibility.
Testing Through Empirical Research
Collecting and analyzing Data
Operational Definition - provides an objective description of how a variable is going to be measured and observed in a particular study.
Self Determination Theory
- People are likely to feel fulfilled when their lives meet three important needs:
- relatedness - warm relations with others
- autonomy - independance
- competance - (mastering new skills)
If research finding is shown again and again, across different researchersf and differen specific methods, it is considered reliable.
Even after a conclusion is make, other researchers come in and do more research, ending in new conclusions.
1. Informed Consent
Institutional Review Board (IRB) evaluates the ethical nature of research conducted at their institutions.
American Psychological Association (APA) developed the code of ethics.
Code of Ethics instructs psychologists to protect their participants from mental and physical harm.
Participants must know what their participation will involve and what risks might develop.
Participants must retain the right to withdraw from the study at any time for any reason.
Researchers are responsible for keeping all the data they gather on individuals completely confidential and, when possible, completely anonymous.
After the study, researchers should inform the participants of its purpose and the methods they used.
Sometimes deception has to occur to not "contaminate" the research. In all cases of deception, the psychologist must ensure the deception will not harm participants, and they will be told the true nature of the study as soon as possible.