Biological And Phychoanalytical Perspectives In Psychology

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“What are the core assumptions and key features of the biological and psychoanalytic perspectives in psychology? In what ways are they similar and how do they differ?”
Two major areas within psychology include the biological and psychoanalytical perspectives. The biological perspective assumes that all our behaviours must have a basis in our physiology and treats humans as any other organism (Glassman & Hadad, 2009). The biological perspective’s main aims are to discover the psychological basis of behaviour, understand the chemistry of the brain and the genetic explanation of our behaviour (Price, Glickstein, Horton & Bailey, 1982). On the other hand, the psychoanalytic perspective focuses on how our internal processes affect our external
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Within the biological perspective there are three prominent areas that biological psychologists focus on. The first concentrates on the relationship between the mind and the body, mainly on the role of the nervous system in this. The central nervous system is comprised of the brain and the nerve pathways of the spinal cord. It is responsible for gaining information about and reacting to the surrounding environment (Carlson, 2014). The second is the influence that our genetics or heredity has on our behaviour. This idea stems from the ideas of Darwin who proposed that desired characteristics would be passed on to the next generation which he termed as natural selection. Psychologists today are still studying Darwin’s work to uncover information on instincts and how these evolve (Gordillo-García, 2016). In terms of the biological perspective, psychologists would use this information to infer that our behaviours and characteristics are inherited. The third most prominent area that the perspective attempts to understand is the chemistry of the brain and how this affects behaviour. This involves identifying different neurotransmitters such as dopamine which is important in sensory …show more content…
The biological perspective is fully falsifiable as it would be possible to prove areas of it as false. However, psychoanalysis is not falsifiable at all as the variables measured are inferred and not observed. This means it has very low validity. The ways in which the core assumptions of these perspectives are studied also differs drastically. A basic assumption of the biological perspective is that psychology is a science and therefore needs to be studied like one. The use of EEG, CAT and PET scans have allowed psychologists to make various discoveries about how the brain connects to the rest of the body and how this consequently affects behaviour (Carlson, 2014). In contrast, the psychoanalytical perspective uses individual cases to determine whether theories are correct. For example, Freud’s theories were highly based upon the case study of Anna O (Perelberg, 2005). However, this means that his theory may not account for individual differences but the use of methods such as EEG may also only use individual cases which makes it impossible to generalise. It also must be made clear that behavioural studies may be considered just as scientific if they are

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