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15 Cards in this Set

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Scientific Method
Traditional view: Science seeks to understand “natural laws”
Over time we gather more and more evidence to support hypotheses, then general laws
Induction-basing general statements on accumulated knowledge; demarcates science from non-science
Karl Popper’s Observation
There is an asymmetry in science between verification and falsification
The logic: if a single black swan can be observed, not all swans are white
A scientific law must be conclusively falsifiable, but not conclusively verifiable
The bottom line: seeking refutation helps further develop our theories—it does not hurt them; We should not seek only to prove our theories, but to disprove them as well
Thomas Kuhn
Scientists in a field follow a paradigm.
Paradigm=widely accepted viewpoint, way of doing things
How does this relate to Psychology?
Psychology could be considered preparadigmatic - many competing theories

OR, maybe psychology will always have several competing theories and will never experience a true “revolution” stage
Persistent Questions in Psychology
Human nature
Mind/Body Interaction
Rationalism vs. Empiricism
Comparative studies
Realism vs. constructivism
The Mind Body Problem
Descartes
Started with Descartes
Cartesian Myth
Descartes in Context (early 1600s)
Lived during the Renaissance, from a wealthy family
French mathematician
Early rationalist—likely because of his exposure to mathematics-deductive reasoning; follow rules of logic to attain the “truth”
Devout Catholic, though he at times doubted God’s existence (he also doubted his own existence)
“I think, therefore I am” proved his existence
Thinking comes from Mind (soul), which is separate from the body (material, mechanical, automatic)—but they can interact in the pineal gland (interactionism).
Descartes Continued
Humans, but not animals, have passions
Wonder, love, hate, desire, joy, and sadness
These can be combined
Animals lack these because they do not have language or self-awareness (your thoughts on this?)
Animal rights proponents would not like Descartes—no anesthesia—cries are just hydraulic hisses!
Back to the Mind Body Problem
Types of Dualism
Interactionism-Descartes
Psychophysical Parallelism (Leibniz—German mathematician)—functions of mind and body are the same, but they do not interact; parallel clocks
Occasionalism-a deity can intervene
Monism
Baruch Spinoza
Spinoza in Context (born 30 years after Descartes)
Portuguese Jew living in exile in Holland—expelled from rabbinical school for defending heretics
He studied Descartes
Rationalist
Physical and mental are two modes of the same substance; the only real substance is God

Baruch Spinoza
Spinoza in Context (born 30 years after Descartes)
Portuguese Jew living in exile in Holland—expelled from rabbinical school for defending heretics
He studied Descartes
Rationalist
Physical and mental are two modes of the same substance; the only real substance is God

Baruch Spinoza
Spinoza in Context (born 30 years after Descartes)
Portuguese Jew living in exile in Holland—expelled from rabbinical school for defending heretics
He studied Descartes
Rationalist
Physical and mental are two modes of the same substance; the only real substance is God

Materialist Monism
All there that exists is body
Watson
Skinner—thought is just private behavior
Idealistic Monism
All that exists is mind
Berkeley—matter does not exist without mind
Hume (I sense, therefore I am)
Metaphysics
concerned with explaining the nature of the world, e.g., what is the nature of reality, is there a God?
Ontology
the study of being or existence
Branch of metaphysics
The question: “What actually exists?”
Originated in early Greece (though some debate that this may have originated in early India or China)
Examples of ontological approaches
Realism-facts are waiting in nature to be discovered
Constructivism-denies that any objective truth can be obtained; we construct our reality; truth is relative; based on sensory experience
Epistemology
study of the nature of knowledge; type of metaphysics
How is knowledge acquired?
Examples of theories of knowledge acquisition

Rationalism-knowledge is acquired by a priori reasoning; deductive

Empiricism-emphasizes experience; inductive; knowledge builds as we gain more experience
Rationalism
knowledge is acquired by a priori reasoning; deductive
Theory of knowledge acquisition— how do we know what we know
We know “truth” because of deductive reasoning, intuition, mental analysis
Sensory experience is not ignored, but cannot explain thought and behavior by itself.
Empiricism
emphasizes experience; inductive; knowledge builds as we gain more experience

Most scientists use both rationalism and empiricism in their quest for knowledge
Important Rationalists
Spinoza

Malebranche

Leibniz

Reid

Kant