Cognitive Approach

  • Created by: Annagc
  • Created on: 31-05-19 13:02

Basic Assumptions

  • Information recieved from our senses is processed by the brain and this directs how we behave 
  • We can infer what a person is thinking from how they act
  • Our brain inputs, stores and retrieves information in a similar way to a computer 
  • Schemas help us to interpret incoming information quickly and effectively 
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  • Studies into memory e.g the working memory model have led to the development of the cognitive interview 
  • Helped us understand the causes of depression and therefore create therapy which is effective 
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Positive Evaluation

  • Uses a scientific method, mainly lab studies, they are therefore reliable 
  • Wide range of practical applications e.g. eyewitness testimony and mental disorders e.g. Beck
  • Less deterministic than the learning approach as it doesn't deny the influence of moral values and social norms 
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Negative Evaulation

  • Lab studies lack ecological validity e.g. Baddeley's word list memory encoding test
  • Doesn't consider genetic factors in mental disorders e.g. SZ 
  • It is reductionist as it doesn't consider emtions and motivation which influence the processing of information and memory e.g. Yerkes-Dodson law 
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Stance on debates

  • Free will e.g. CBT can change the way we think, Deterministic e.g. schemas determine how we think
  • Interactionist on nature vs nurture, nature e.g. our brains innate capacities as information processors, nurture e.g. behaviour is influenced by learning and experience 
  • Reductionist as it isolates processes from other cognitive processes but we use many at the same time 
  • Nomothetic 
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