Women Contribution to Psychology

Topics: Psychology, Mind, Animal cognition Pages: 6 (1648 words) Published: June 24, 2013
Women Contributions to Psychology
Jovon Sutphin
8 March 2013
Brandi Reynolds

The essay is written about Margaret Flow Washburn. The essay speaks of her background from her early teenage years and progressing through her career as a psychologist, her battles of a woman during an American period where women equal rights of educational progress was not the same as men. The essay also speaks on the contributions to her field of psychology presenting theories on the animal mind and her motor theory.

Women Contributions to Psychology
Margaret Floy Washburn started out as a decisive student who attended Vassari College upon graduation was divided between science and philosophy. Margaret Floy Washburn would go on to be a one of the few Pioneers for women who would go onto be successful Psychologist. Today Margaret Floy Washburn is known best for her work in comparative psychology and her book The Animal Mind would go to be four editions, become the standard textbook of its day (Goodwin, 2008). Her experimental research and focus toward cognitive process of perception, attention, and consciousness of various species would go on to be groundbreaking, contributing to scientist of today experimental theories. As with any Psychologist of past time her theory or experiments should be looked as steppingstones, to apply corrective action to information they may have missed or did not at the time have the capabilities of requiring.

Margaret Floy Washburn
Throughout this essay briefly discussing on Margaret Floy history, struggles as a woman trying to break the barrier, and her some of her best known work as a psychologist below.
Brief early history of Margaret Floy Washburn
Margaret Floy Washburn was born July 25, 1871 in New York City (Biography of Margaret Flow Washburn, Para. 1). At the age of 15, she attended college at Vassar College in Poughkeepsie and soon became a member of Kappa Alpha Theta Sorority. Ladd-Franklin had also attended the same college many years before Margaret and soon after Margaret graduation she applied for graduate studies at Columbia University. Women were not permitted to study at Columbia at the time, she had entered the college only as observer where she was noticed as a serious student by Cattell but could only attend his classes unofficially (Goodwin, 2008). Cattell recommended her to apply at the Sage school of Philosophy at Cornell because they were accepting women graduate students and seen the un-keen potential in her. Margaret would encounter E.B. Titchener, who accepted Margaret into his laboratory, and she would go on to be responsible for experiments and research under E.B. Titchener. Margaret will go on to be the first woman to earn a PhD in Psychology in 1894. During the rest of her adult life, Margaret taught at several colleges, including Sage College, Wells College, and University of Cincinnati and in 1903 returning to her Alma mater as Associate Professor of Philosophy for Vassar up until her retirement in 1937 (Biography of Margaret Flow Washburn, Para. 1). She died on October 29, 1939 at her home in Poughkeepsie, New York.

Breaking through the Barrier
Margaret Floy Washburn fought many battles as woman trying to break into Psychology. First, she had been accepted into the graduate school of Columbia University as only a “hearer” because women were not permitted entry into Columbia University graduate program. She only attended Columbia University for a year...

References: Goodwin, J. (2008). American Pioneers. A history of Modern Psychology (3rd Ed.)
Retrieved from https://ecampus.phoenix.edu/content/eBookLibrary2/content/eReader.aspx#bib279
Good therapy. (2007-2013) Margaret Floy Washburn (1871-1939)
Retrieved from http://www.goodtherapy.org/famous-psychologists/margaret-floy-washburn.html
Margaret Floy Washburn. (2013, February 4). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Margaret_Floy_Washburn&oldid=536601032
Pillsbury, W.B. (1940). Margaret Flow Washburn. Psychological Review
Retrieved from http://www.brocku.ca/MeadProject/Washburn/Pillsbury_1940

Rodkey, E. (2010). Margaret Floy Washburn. Psychology’s Feminist Voices
Retrieved from http://www.feministvoices.com/margaret-floy-washburn/
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