Depression could be caused by psychological factors 

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  • Created by: 08rmorris
  • Created on: 05-04-15 17:34
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  • Depression could be caused by psychological factors
    • Socio-cultural factors
      • Evidence for
        • Brown and Harris (1978) studied depression by interviewing housewives in London
          • They found that 61% of the subjects with depression had recently experienced a stressful life event, compared with only 19% of the non-depressed subjects
            • Evidence for
              • Brown and Harris (1978) studied depression by interviewing housewives in London
                • They found that 61% of the subjects with depression had recently experienced a stressful life event, compared with only 19% of the non-depressed subjects
                  • Of the subjects who had experienced a stressful event but had a close friend, only 10% has depression, compared to 37% of depressed subjects who didn't have a close friends
                    • these results suggest that depressions influenced by stressful life events and a lack of emotional support
                • Of the subjects who had experienced a stressful event but had a close friend, only 10% has depression, compared to 37% of depressed subjects who didn't have a close friends
                  • these results suggest that depressions influenced by stressful life events and a lack of emotional support
          • Evidence against
            • 1. Brown and Harris's study just shows correlation, so you cant prove cause and effect
            • 2. The effect of social factors doesn't explain why some people experience endogenous depression (sudden depression that occurs due to internal factors)
          • Social psychologists focus on how depression can be triggered by something external, e.g. bereavement or divorce
        • Behavioural factors
          • Evidence for
            • Seligamn (1975) restrained dogs so that they couldn't avoid receiving electric shocks
              • Later she they could actually avoid the shocks they didn't even try
                • demonstrating learned helplessnedd
                  • This can be generalised to humans when people aren't in control of stressful events they eventually learn not to try and improve them, causing them to become depressed
          • Evidence against
            • Behaviourist theory ignores the influence of biological factors
              • It also only explains reactive depression (depression caused by external events)
                • It may be that biological factors are responsible for causing endogenous depression
          • Behavioursitsrecko that depression develops when stressors lead to a lack of positive reinforcement. The attention that depressive behaviour draws can then provide positive reinforcement, meaning that the person learns to continue being depressed
            • May also be influenced by learned helplessness.Occurs when people learn not to try because they believe they'll never succeed
        • Cognitive factors
          • Evidence for
            • Beck et al (1979) found that depressed people had negative thought processes
            • - they exaggerated their weaknesses and played down their strengths
          • Evidence against
            • This is just a correlation it doesn't prove cause and effect
          • Abramson eta al (1978) developed Seligman's theory of learned helplessness into a cognitive theory
            • They looked at people's thought processes in response to failure and stated that faille can be interpreted as:
              • 1. internal  (the person's fault) or external (caused by something else)
              • 2. Global  (applies to all situations) or specific (just applies to this situation)
              • 3. Stable (likely to continue) or unstable (could easily change)
        • Psychodynamic theory
          • Evidence for
            • Brown and Harris (1978) found that the women they interviewed were more likely to have depression if they experienced disrupted childhood attachments, especially if their mother had died
          • Evidence against
            • There isn't any research evidence to support frauds theory, so its unfalsifiable. it also ignores the significance of other factors in causing depression, e.g. biological factors
          • Freud claimed that if a child feels unloved by its parents it become angry.
            • This creates guilt, so the anger is redirected towards the self. These feelings are repressed, but may return following a stressful life event, causing depression

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