The Transformation of Psychology

Topics: Psychology, Mind, Cognition Pages: 3 (628 words) Published: November 11, 2012
The Transformation of Pyschology

From the 1920s to today, psychology has surely developed. Technological advancements as well as new ideas and ways of thinking about the subject helped to reform what psychology is today. Rather than completely changing, psychology has actually built up more and more through the decades. New branches were added to the field as those who studied it made new breakthroughs. Over the years many scientists and psychologists have contributed to the transformation of psychology.

Up until the 1920’s, psychology was defined as the science of mental life. It wasn’t until then that the idea of behaviorism became more prominent in psychology. During the time period between the 1920’s and the 1960’s, American psychologists led by John Watson redefined the meaning of psychology into a science of mental life and observable behavior. Not only did Watson redefine psychology, he also started the psychological school of behaviorism. It was also around this time that Watson and his partner Rosalie Rayner conducted their conditioning experiment. The idea of classical conditioning came into play when behaviorism became a major branch of psychology. Between the 1950’s and 1970s, the mental perspective of psychology came back, producing another new branch. This new branch was called cognitive psychology. Cognitive psychology focused mainly on mental processes such as thinking, problem solving, memory, decision making, and language. The term “cognitive psychology” was first used in 1967 by the American psychologist named Ulric Neisser. To go along with cognitive psychology is the topic of cognitive development. This theory was concerned with the development of a person’s thought process. Jean Piaget published The Moral Judgment of Children which began his popularity as a theorist in cognitive development.

As a reaction to behaviorism and psychoanalysis (a type developed by Freud, before the 1920s) , another new type of psychology called...

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