Emergence of Psychology as a Science

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Empiricists believe that knowledge comes from observation & experience (not introspection)

The two major assumptions are:

  • All behaviour is seen as being caused (or determined) by certain factors.
  • So it should be possible to predict how humans will behave in certain situations.

Techniques used to explore these assumptions became known as the scientific method.

Most fundamental characteristic of science is its reliance on empirical methods where we can observe results objectively through testing and experimentation.

Characteristics of science:

Theories must be falsifiable. This means they must be tested so that it is possible to show that it is wrong

Studies must be:

  • Objective; free from bias so that the researcher’s own ideas and opinions don’t alter the results.


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