The History of Psychology

  • 384

    Aristotle

    Aristotle
    Aristotle was born 384 B.C. and raised many questions about human behavior which are still used today. He outlined the laws of associationism which is still used at the heart of learning theory almost 2,000 years later. He died in 322 B.C.
  • 428

    Plato

    Plato
    Plato was born in 428 B.c. and was a student of Socrates in ancient Greece who recorded his teacher's advice "Know thyself". This has been the motto of Psychology ever since. He died in 348 B.C.
  • 460

    Hippocrates

    Hippocrates
    Hippocrates was born in 460 B.C. and he believed that psychological disorders were caused by abnormalties of the brain. He died in 377 B.C.
  • Jan 1, 1500

    Nicolaus Copernicus

    Nicolaus Copernicus
    Nicolaus Copernicus was a polish astronomer who lived in the 1500s. He challenged the view that the sun revolves around the earth, suggesting that the earth revolves around the sun.
  • Sir Isaac Newton

    Sir Isaac Newton
    Sir Isaac Newton was an English scientist in the 1600s and he formulated the laws of gravity and motion.
  • John Locke

    John Locke
    John Locke was a English philospher who built on the principles of associatism and theorized that knowledge is not inborn but is learned from experience.
  • Antoine Lavoisier

    Antoine Lavoisier
    Antoine Lavoisier was a French scientist in the late 1700s who founded the science of chemistry and explained how plants and animals use oxygen and respiration.
  • Wilhelm Wundt

    Wilhelm Wundt
    Wilhelm Wundt founded the field of psychology known as stucturalism which deals with the basic elements of consciousness. He broke down the content of consciousness into two categories: objective sensations and subjective feelings. He died in 1920
  • William James

    William James
    William James was a professor at Harvard who founded the school of functionalism which deals with how mental processes help organisms adapt to their environment.
  • Sigmund Freud

    Sigmund Freud
    Sigmund Freud was born in 1856 and was a Viennese physcian and is one of the most famous early psychologists. He founded the school of psychoanalysis which emphasizes the importance of unconscious motives and internal conflicts in determining human behavior. Freud gained his understanding of human behavior through consultations with paitents. His theory is sometimes called psychodynamic thinking. He later died in 1939.
  • John B. Watson

    John B. Watson
    John B. Watson was born in 1878 and he believed that it was unscientific to study the consciousness of an animal, so he founded the school of behaviorism. He asserted that if psychology was to be a natural science, it must be limited to observable, measurable events. He died in 1958.
  • B. F. Skinner

    B. F. Skinner
    B. F. Skinner was born in 1904 and was a psychologist at Harvard who added to the behaviorist tradition by introducing the concept of reinforcement. He showed that if animals are rewarded because they do a certain action, then they are more likely to do it again. He died in 1990.
  • Kenneth B. Clark

    Kenneth B. Clark
    Kenneth B. Clark was born in the Panama Canal Zone in 1914 to Indian parents. He moved to Harlem, New York for education purposes. Unlike most African- Americans, he attended a academic high school and later went to Howard University. He earned a Ph.D in psychology from Columbia University. Clark worked to end segregation in schools and was successful. In 1954, when the supreme court overturned the "seperate but equal" doctrine, Clark's work was cited. He later died in 2005.
  • The Biological Perspective

    The Biological Perspective
    The biological perspective emphasizes the influence of biology on our behavior. Biological psychologists study how our mental processes are related to the nervous system. They use CAT scans and PET scans to show which parts of the brain are used in which mental process. Biological psychology has shown that different parts of the brain function when we do different things. Biological psychologists study the influences of genes on personality traits, psychological health, and behavior patterns.
  • The Evolutionary Perspective

    The Evolutionary Perspective
    The evolutionary perspective deals with the evolution of behavior and mental processes. Charles Darwin had a theory that said the most adaptive organisms would survive. Evolutionary psychologists believe many behavior patterns have a heredity basis and that inherited tendencies influence people to act in certain ways.
  • The Cognative Perspective

    The Cognative Perspective
    The cognitive perspective focuses on how thoughs determine our behaviors. Cognitive psychologists study mental processes to try to understand human nature. They also study how people process information. They use the computer analogy comparing our memory to the storage on a computer. They believe that behavior is influenced by values, perceptions, and choices.
  • The Humanistic Perspective

    The Humanistic Perspective
    The humanistic perspective focuses on the human capacity for self-fulfillment and the importance of consciousness, self-awareness, and the capacity to make choices. Humanistic psychologists consider people's experiences to be the most important aspect of psychology. They believe that we are free to choose our own behavior and they view people as good who try to help people.
  • The Psychoanalytic Perspective

    The Psychoanalytic Perspective
    The psychoanalytic perspective focuses on the influence of unconsciousness forces on human behavior. They focus more on conscious choice and self-direction rather than unconscious sexual and aggressive impulses. They also believe that aggressive impulses are just common reactions to frustrations. By holding in the aggression, we set ourselves up for later explosions.
  • The Learning Perspective

    The Learning Perspective
    The learning perspective focuses on the effects of experience on behavior. They believe that learning is the essential factor in observing, describing, explaining, predicting, and controlling behavior. They believe that people act and react because of their learning histories. They believe that behavior is learned either from experience or by observing other people.