Cognitive Psychology History

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Psychology has evolved greatly since its philosophical roots and was first founded by Wilhelm Wundt in 1879.
Psychological experimentation originally began in 700 BC in Ancient Egypt, when Pstamik I who was fascinated with language ordered children into the wild to see how their language skills would develop as, in spite of this psychology had not yet emerged as a separate discipline. Years later, in the 17th century, Rene Descartes introduced the theory of Cartesian dualism, suggesting the mind and body were separate, also distinguishing humans from animals. Descartes believed that animals acted purely on instinct whereas, humans had the ability to thought process. In 1859, Charles Darwin proposed the theory of evolution, indicating that
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(Cardwell et al, 2003) The cognitive approach put forward studied the functions of the brain and saw an individual as an active information processor, and is commonly used to explain how we make sense of information received from our senses, using introspective methods. (Bainbridge et al, 2008) Cognitive psychologists compared the information processing of both computers and human brains to understand human minds and takes into consideration perception, attention, memory, language and thinking thought of as processing systems. In comparison to a computer the human brain has an input which are the senses, then processed by the brain with the output being the behaviour. (Russell & Jarvis 2007) John Piaget also played a fundamental role in understanding that children have four stages of cognitive development including, sensorimotor stage, pre-operational stage, concrete-operational stage and formal operational stage, in which they can improve their basic mental structure. Cognitive psychology is beneficial in understanding how the brain works, taking into account all thought processes which can be the cause of our behaviour and helps to show the limitations the brain may face. Furthermore, experiments within psychology such as the stroop test can be repeated indefinitely and are therefore reliable. …show more content…
(Gross, R 2010) “It investigates how chemical and electrical events that occur within us affect our thinking, emotions and behaviour.” (Russell & Jarvis, 2007: 3) Within the brain there are different areas which control what we do from our emotions to movements, these lobes include, frontal, parietal, temporal, occipital and cerebellum each with their own function. The endocrine system which secretes hormones also has an influence over our behaviour, emotions and thinking as well as affecting the actions of specific organs. There are also neurons within the body which conduct electrical messages; motor neurons cause our muscles to contract whereas interneuron’s are concerned with decision making.(Russell & Jarvis, 2007) Brain activity has been measured by PET scans, showing response of different areas within the brain to different stimuli. Biopsychology has been a significant factor in helping develop treatments for mental health disorders as it has enabled psychologists to have a more in-depth understanding of how the human brain works and the behavioural outcome of stimuli. Furthermore, through studying a person’s biology it allows for clear predictions of behaviour to be made of the individual and those who are genetically related. In addition, permits explanations of behaviour to be scientifically tested and proved. (Simply psychology, 2007)In spite

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