• Created by: caseyh07
  • Created on: 28-08-18 20:04
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  • Comparison of Approaches
    • Reductionism/Holism
      • Behaviourism- breaks up complex behaviour into stimulus response units to make testing in the labs easier. 
      • Cognitive - machine reductionist; presenting people as information processing systems, and ignoring influence of emotion on behaviour. 
      • Social Learning Theory - reduce complex learning to a handful of key processes (eg. imitation, modelling). However place emphasis on cognitive factors that mediate learning and how these interact with external influences. Therefore, this approach  is both part reductionist and holistic. 
      • Biological approach-reductionist  because it attempts to reduce human behaviour and human emotion to biological causes such as: genes and the nervous system.
      • Humanistic - holistic approach to understanding human behaviour; investigates all aspects of an individual (including effects of interaction with others and wider society). 
      • Psychodynamic approach-Their case-study approach to research reflects this uniqueness and exemplifies an ideographic way of studying people. However, it generally explains complex behaviours as manifestations of more primitive biological drives, it is widely regarded as a reductionist approach to psychology rather than a holistic one. 
    • Nature/NurtueDebate
      • Biological approach-believes us to be as a consequence of our genetics and physiology. It is the only approach in psychology that examines thoughts, feelings, and behaviors from a biological and thus physical point of view. They state  behaviour is a genetic blueprint inherited from our parents. Comes from NATURE. 
      • Behaviourism-characterises babies as 'blank slates' at birth. All behaviour comes from NURTURE; learnt through associations and reinforcement 
      • Social Learning Theory - same as behaviourismbut learn through observation and imitation. NURTURE. 
      • Cognitive - many of our information processing abilities are innate; they are constantly refined through experience. 
      • Psycho- dynamic - Freud thought much of behaviour was driven by biological drives/ instincts. However also thought relationships with parents as fundamental in future development. 
      • Humanistic - regard parents, friends and wider society as having critical impact on a persons' self- concept. 
    • Determinism/  Free will
      • Behaviourism - all behaviour as environmentally determined by external influences that we are unable to control 
      • Cognitive - we chose our own thoughts and behaviours, but these choices can only operate within the limits of what we know and have experienced. 
      • Humanistic - human beings have 'free will' and operate as active agents who determine their own development. 
      • Social Learning Theory - reciprocal determinism; where as well as being influenced by the environment, we exert some influence onto it through our behaviours. 
      • Psycho- dynamic - psychic determinism; where we don't know the unconscious forces driving behaviour, but can be explained by our conscious minds. 
      • Biological - advocates genetic determinism; much of our behaviour is directed by innate influences. 
    • Idiographic/ Nomothetic
      • Biological Psychologists take a nomothetic approach when explaining psychological disorders, such as OCD and depression. They typically pinpoint biological factors, such as neurotransmitters, that are responsible for such disorders and use biological therapies (e.g. drugs) to treat all patients.
      • Behaviourists, such as Pavlov and Skinner, conducted experiments with animals in order to establish laws of learning (classical and operant conditioning) that could be generalised to humans and non-human animals. NOMOTHETIC
      • Cognitive Psychologists, such as Atkinson and Shiffrin, developed general laws, such as the Multi-Store Model of Memory, which they believed could be generalised to everyone.
      • Social Psychologists, such as Milgram and Asch, used a nomothetic approach to create general conclusions about human behaviour: that situational factors are responsible for both obedience and conformity.
      • Humanistic psychology is probably the best example of the idiographic perspective. Carl Rogers and Abraham Maslow took a phenomenological approach to the study of human beings and were interested only in documenting the conscious experience of the individual or ‘self’ rather than producing general laws of behaviour.
      • The psychodynamic approach is often labelled ‘idiographic’ because of Sigmund Freud’s use of the case study method when detailing the lives of his patients. However, Freud also assumed he had identified universal laws of behaviour and personality development (which is more akin to a nomothetic approach


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