Individual Differences Studies

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  • Created on: 30-05-13 20:18

Rosenhan (Being Sane in Insane Places)

Method1: field, USA. 8 people tried to be admitted to psychiatric hospitals saying they head voices.

Results1: 7/8 diagnosed with schizophrenia, all 8 admitted. Said they were fake symptoms - ignored. Other patients could see they were sane. Average 19 days before released with 'schizophrenia in remission'.

Method2: told hospitals pseudo patients would try to be admitted.

Results2: 41 genuine patients were thought to be pseudo patients.

Conclusion: medical staff can't distinguish sane/insane.

Evaluation: low int. calidity (field), 'schz. in remission' rarely used (staff may have known patients were sane), ethics: PPs lost freedom, mentally healthy people received treatment, genuine patients denied treatment, staff deceived.

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Gottesman and Shields

Aim: relationship between schizophrenia and genetics.

Method: history of 45,000 people treated in London hospitals. Found 57 schizophrenics with a twin.

Findings: 42% agreement rate for identical, 9% for non identical.

Conclusion: shows a strong genetic basis to schizophrenia (identical twins have the same genes).

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Torrey et al

Aim: schizophrenia due to viral infection. People with schz. are mainly born in late winter/early spring.

Method: foetal brain most vulnerable to infection during middle months of pregnancy, when the brain is developing interconnections (which are incomplete in schizophrenics).

Findings: highlighted danger of schizophrenia for people who were exposed to influenza during 5h month of foetal development.

Conclusion: association between viral infection during development + schizophrenia.

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Little Hans

5y/o. Scared of horses pulling cart. Freud believed he had unconscious anxieties. Heard a man say 'don't put your finger to the horse or it will bite you'. Asked his mother to put her finger on his penis, she refused. Linked the two sources of anxiety - became scared of horse but really scared of his mother leaving him.

He saw a horse with a laden cart fall over - horse symbolised his father, cart - pregnant monther. Falling over represented his mother giving birth and his father dying - both events caused anxiety. 

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Anna O

Paralysis, nausea, dififculty drinking. Freud said she was scared of drinking because a dog she didn't like drank from her glass. Other symptoms came from when she looked after her sick father. She couldn't express anxieties at the time but did so during psychoanalysis, and then her paralysis disappeared. 

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Little Albert

11 y/o. No initial fear of rats. John Watson wanted experimental evidence of classical conditioning.

Before: unconditioned stimulus (loud noise) → unconditioned response (crying)
neutral stimulus (rat) → nothing

During: unconditioned stimulus (loud noise) + neutral stimulus (rat)  conditioned response (crying)

After: conditioned stimulus (rat) → conditioned response (crying)

AO2: unethical, not generalisable.  

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