Psychology Perspectives and the Biological Foundations of the Brain

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Psychology Perspectives and the Biological Foundations of the Brain Cassandra Tabor
October Fifth, 2009
University of Phoenix

Psychology Perspectives and the Biological Foundations of the Brain Psychology is the scientific investigations of the mental processes such as: behavior, thought, and emotions. Emerging from philosophy and biology, psychology revolutionized the way scientists study the human brain. Wilhelm Wundt, the “father of psychology,” applied scientific research and experiments to unravel the elements of the human conscious (Kowalski & Westen, 2009). In the following years of the “new psychology,” scientists separate themselves from the philosophical theory and emerged into the science of psychology (Kowalski & Westen, 2009). This essay will describe how biological foundations of psychology are linked to behavior and will also explain and define a few schools of psychological thought: structuralism, functionalism, cognitive, behaviorism, psychodynamic, and evolutionary. Psychology is the study of the human mind and the key to unlocking the secrets are the scientists who research and experiment to prove their theory. Structuralism centers on breaking down the mental process into basic conscious elements by way of the introspection analysis. Structuralism was the first school of thought founded by Edward E. Titchener. Teichener believes the study of psychology is to view how the conscious mind works. Tiechener also believed that he could classify and define the structures of the brain into elements much like chemists classify elements in the periodic table (Kowalski & Westen, 2009). However, structuralism is different from the functionalism school of psychology. Instead of defining the elements of the brain, functionalism accentuates the purpose of consciousness and behavior. Founded by William James, functionalism was sought to define the contents of the mind and effectively explain it by the influence of the...