Foundations of Behavior

Topics: Psychology, Mind, Cognition Pages: 3 (788 words) Published: February 24, 2013
Foundations of Behavior

There are many different perspectives of psychology that date back to the 1870’s. The study of the mind and behavior is the basis of psychology. After researching the various theories there are three that I find most interesting and would like to discuss.

The first theory that I found is cognitive psychology. Cognitive psychology deals with the mental processes of the mind. This includes decisions we make, our memory, the way we perceive aspects of life and other matters of the brain. (Cherry, K.)

An example of the cognitive perspective is using a controlled atmosphere where scientists study the brain by using memory tests. This is done by having the subject look at pictures, symbols or words. After a period of time lapse the subject will be asked what all they remember. By doing this it shows the scientists how the memory part of the brain responds to what they saw and what they actually remember.

Behaviorism is the second theory I am fascinated with. Behaviorism is based on the idea that everything we do, think and feel is learned not instilled. (Cherry, K.) The brain responds to stimuli that control our thought process. Behavior is set through conditioning.

There are two types of conditioning that is used; classical conditioning and operant conditioning. Classical conditioning consists of natural stimuli and responses while operant conditioning uses rewards or punishments to create learning.

An example of behaviorism would be a baby mimicking a parent. There is an ongoing debate about when we are born we are born with a “clean slate”, meaning that we do not have our own thoughts or actions. So if a baby hears their parent laugh, it causes a curious reaction in their brain that usually results in their own laughter. If the parent continues to laugh and the baby laughs back, this is classical conditioning.

The final theory is psychodynamic. Psychodynamic theory can also be known as psychoanalysis....
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