Major Schools of Thought in Psychology

Better Essays
Major Schools of Thought in Psychology

Major Schools of Thought in Psychology

Desirae Carrion

Kaplan University


Several researchers contributed to the development of psychology as a separate field of study. "Their work, along with Wundt 's work, made Germany the undisputed center of the movement" (Schultz, & Schultz, 2011p. 77). The world 's first psychological laboratory was opened by Wilhelm Wundt in 1879 at the University of Leipzig (Schultz &Schultz, 2011).When researchers started to rely on controlled observations and experimentation to study the human mind psychology began to obtain its own identity separate from its philosophical roots (Schultz &Schultz, 2011). Scientific study was occurring in several psychological
…show more content…
There were three stages of behaviorism Watsonian behaviorism, Neobehaviorism, and Sociobehaviorism. Neobehaviorism believed that the core of psychology is the study of learning, most behavior, no matter how complex, can be accounted for by the laws of conditioning, and psychology must adopt the principle of operationism (Schultz & Schultz, 2011).

The gestalt school of thought was considered an original, undistorted, natural approach to understanding a person 's thinking, acting, and feeling. The greatest value in the Gestalt approach, according to Perls, Hefferline and Goodman (1951, p.xi) "lies in the insight that the whole determines the parts, which contrasts with the previous assumption that the whole is merely the total sum of its elements". "Wertheimer asserted that we perceive objects in the same way we perceive apparent motion, as unified wholes rather than clusters of individual sensations. The Gestalt principles are the basic rules that we use to make sense of or organize our perceptual world (Schultz & Schultz, 2011 p. 272). There are six principles proximity, continuity, similarity, closure, simplicity, and figure/ground (Schultz & Schultz, 2011).

The psychoanalytic view believes that there are inner forces outside of our awareness that are causing our behavior. Psychoanalysis main goal was to help clients release repressed feelings that might be from early experiences. Clients who showed signs of hidden disturbances could be cured by
Get Access