PSY20150 Foundations of Psychology UCD Assignment Sample Ireland
PSY20150 Foundations of Psychology is a unit offered by University College Dublin that aims to acquaint students with the basics of psychology. The unit covers various topics such as research methods, physiology, evolutionary psychology, cognition, and social psychology.
The main focus of the unit is to enable students to develop scientific thinking skills and to become aware of their own biases which might prevent them from making objective decisions. In order to do so, the unit employs both lectures and interactive activities.
Lectures cover ideas and foundational concepts while interactive activities help connect these concepts to real-life situations. This combination helps build a strong understanding of psychological phenomena. Students are also encouraged to reflect on their personal experiences in order to apply what they have learned to their own lives.
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In this unit, we are describing some tasks. These are:
Assignment Task 1: Discuss the chronological development of Psychology as a discipline.
The chronological development of psychology as a discipline can be divided into five periods: physiological, structuralism, functionalism, behaviorism, and cognitive psychology.
Physiological psychology was the earliest form of psychology and focused on understanding the workings of the human brain.
Structuralism was the next major school of thought and focused on breaking down complex psychological phenomena into their basic parts (i.e., structures).
Functionalism was next and focused on how these structures functioned in relation to one another.
Behaviorism was an offshoot of functionalism that focused exclusively on observable behavior.
And finally, cognitive psychology emerged in the late 20th century and focused on understanding mental processes such as thinking, memory, and problem-solving.
Each of these periods has made important contributions to our understanding of psychology as a discipline.
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Assignment Task 2: Describe the key features of the main Schools of Psychology (e.g. Structuralism, Functionalism, Gestalt, Psychodynamic, and Behaviourism).
The main schools of psychology are Structuralism, Functionalism, Gestalt, Psychodynamic, and Behaviourism. Each school of thought has its own unique perspective on human thought and behavior.
Structuralism is the first school of psychology and was founded by Wilhelm Wundt. Structuralism focuses on the structure of the mind, specifically how the mind is structured and how different elements interact with one another.
Functionalism is the second school of psychology and was founded by William James. Functionalism focuses on how mental processes work in order to adapt an individual to their environment.
Gestalt is the third school of psychology and was founded by Max Wertheimer. Gestalt emphasizes that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. In other words, the mind processes information as a whole rather than breaking it down into individual elements.
Psychodynamics is the fourth school of psychology and was founded by Sigmund Freud. Psychodynamics focuses on the role of unconscious mental processes in shaping behavior.
Behaviourism is the fifth school of psychology and was founded by John B. Watson. Behaviourism focuses on observable behavior and the role of conditioning in shaping behavior.
Each school of thought has its own strengths and weaknesses, but all have contributed to our understanding of human thought and behavior.
Assignment Task 3: Compare and contrast the main approaches to Psychology in the 19th and 20th centuries.
The approaches to psychology in the 19th and 20th centuries diverged significantly, with the former concentrating more on the scientific study of behavior and the latter vitally interested in understanding the inner workings of the human Mind. 19th-century approaches were heavily influenced by philosophy, while 20th-century approaches were shaped by developments in biology and other sciences.
This distinction is reflected in the different terminology used by psychologists in each era: while 19th-century psychologists talked about æsthetics, pleasure/pain principle, drive reduction theory, etc., their successors in the 20th century spoke of behaviorism Gestalt psychology, psychoanalysis, cognitive science.
The late 19th century was dominated by structuralism ICC tripartite model of the mind, which posited that the mind could be broken down into its constituent parts. This approach was spearheaded by Wilhelm Wundt, who is often considered the father of psychology.
In contrast, the early 20th century saw the rise of functionalism, which emphasized the adaptive nature of behavior and downplayed the role of consciousness. The major figure in this movement was William James, who famously argued that the only thing worth studying is consciousness.
The middle of the 20th century was marked by a number of different schools of thought, including behaviorism, Gestalt psychology, psychoanalysis, and cognitive science. These approaches all had their own unique perspectives on human behavior, but they all shared a common interest in understanding the inner workings of the mind.
The late 20th century and early 21st century have seen a resurgence of interest in the scientific study of behavior, with a focus on uncovering the underlying mechanisms that drive it. This approach, known as neuroscience, has been aided by advances in technology, which have allowed researchers to study the brain in greater detail than ever before.
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Assignment Task 4: Critically analyze the relationship between Psychology and Society, e.g. with regard to concepts such as ‘race’, ‘gender’, and ‘madness’.
The relationship between psychology and society is complex. On one hand, psychology can be used to understand and explain social phenomena. For example, psychologists have studied the effects of gender on socialization, the role of race in social attitudes, and the ways in which Madness is understood and constructed by society.
On the other hand, society can shape psychology. For example, many psychological concepts (such as race, gender, and Madness) are not natural or universal categories but are instead socially constructed. Additionally, society can dictate how psychologists treat certain mental health issues. For instance, until fairly recently homosexuality was considered a mental disorder by the American Psychiatric Association.
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