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Compare & Contrast Two Approaches to Psychology

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Compare & Contrast Two Approaches to Psychology

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  • October 2, 2008
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Psychology is a discipline that involves monitoring mental processes and behaviour scientifically. Psychologists try to delve into the basic functions of a person and animals cerebral activity. This usually involves studying relationships, emotions, personality and many more areas of a person or animals day to day life. Psychology tends to steer towards finding reasons for a person or animals actions in an attempt to resolve them.

There are many different sub - fields of psychology, however it is possible to draw similarities and differences to all aspects of these fields. The main fields deal with the different approaches used by various psychologists throughout history. Whilst there are no 100% correct theories in Psychology to help to understand a person, we do need to compare and contrast the advantages and disadvantages of each theory in order to work out which is more beneficial for the subject. In this instance, it is possible for me to discuss Behaviourism and Psychodynamic approaches.

One of the main psychologists in recent history is John B. Watson (1878 - 1958). Watson was responsible for creating Behaviourism by developing on theories discovered by earlier psychologist Pavlov (1849 - 1936). This phenomenon had a profound effect on how psychology developed. The General assumptions of the Behaviourist approach show that it relies on the study of objective and observable behaviours and does not take into consideration any internal thoughts or feelings. Basically, behaviourism is the study of the relationship between a persons environment and their behaviour whilst ignoring the internal thoughts and feelings of the individual (Carlson & Buskist, 1997). The Psychodynamic approach is a stark contrast. This approach was developed by Freud (1856 - 1939) in the 1890s in Vienna and looks at the internal conflicts within a subjects unconscious mind to create theories on the subjects personality development. It also allows treatment for psychological...