Strengths and Weaknesses of approaches

2 strengths and 2 weaknesses for each approach and the psychodynamic perspective with links to studies

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  • Created by: Gemma
  • Created on: 17-05-12 15:32

Developmental Approach


  • Shows that childhood is a critical period in our development. Bandura
  • Shows how ageing and maturation can affect out behaviour. Samuel and Bryant


  • Samples often use children which can lead to ethical issues. Bandura
  • Samples can often be culturally biased or too small to generalise to the rest of the population. Freud and Samuel and Bryant
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Cognitive Approach


  • Provides support for the Is psychology a science debate as it often used scientific methods such as laboratory experiments which have high control and allow for replicability. Loftus and Palmer
  • Provide further information into cognitive impairments and may help to find practical applications in the form of treatments and therapy. Baron-Cohen


  • May lack ecological validity due to the scientific methods of laboratory experiment. Loftus and Palmer
  • Collects mainly quantitative data which does not give reasons for results. Savage-Rumbaugh
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Social Approach


  • Studies factors that are relevant to our society. Reicher and Haslam
  • Demonstrates the way situational factors affect our behaviour. Milgram


  • Can often raise ethical issues due to deceit. Piliavin
  • Deterministic. Assumes that all people will respond to their social situation in the same way. Ignores any free will the person has to over ride it. Milgram.
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Individual Differences


  • Provides a better understanding about mental illness which can lead to treatments. Griffiths and gambling addiction or MPD from thigpen and cleckley
  • Can reduce prejudice and discrimination against people who have a mental illness. Rosenhan


  • Data collected is often qualitative and can be very subjective making it susceptible to researcher bias. Thigpen and Cleckly
  • Raises many ethical issues. Thigpen and Cleckly or Rosenhan
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Physiological Approach


  • Uses reliable scientific methods such as MRI scans and EEG. Dement and Kleitman and Maguire
  • Provides support for the nurture side of the nature-nurture debate. Maguire shows plasticity of the brain


  • Can lack ecological validity due to scientific measures. Sperry and his specialised equipment.
  • Hard to determine cause and effect. Maguire showed only a correlational relationship between variables.
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Psychodynamic Perspective


  • Shows that childhood can determine who we become in later life. Thigpen and Cleckly
  • Data collected is often qualitative so provides rich in depth data. Freud


  • Because data is often qualitative it is very subjective and open to researcher bias. Freud
  • Often uses small ungeneralisable samples. Freud and little Hans
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Physiological approach provides support for the nature side of the debate not nurture.


Not when you use the Maguire study to support your arguement. As Maguire's study shows support for plasticity of the brain which is nurture.

In effect its a relationship between nature and nurture


plasticity of the brain is not nature your hippocampi changes according to your surrounding witch is nature Remember special navigation thats nature


This is great but theirs no Behaviourist perspective

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