Psychology as a Pradigm Essay

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Thomas Kuhn asserts that sciences more mature than psychology have reached what he describes as a paradigm (Kuhn, 1963). A paradigm is a model, universally accepted by practitioners of a science during the period of its development (Watson, 1966). A paradigm must attract adherents away from approaches that oppose its own, and is sufficiently open-ended so that the problems it leaves can be resolved (Locurto, 2013; Kuhn, 1963). Therefore, a paradigm directs research and defines problems worth solving (Locurto, 2013). With a global acceptance among practitioners a paradigm defines the science it operates under. Kuhn (1963) recognizes that the scientific fields of physics, chemistry, astronomy, and biology all are paradigmatic. Illustrative…show more content…
Generally, Kulpe’s lab asked subjects to perform more complex behaviors and report after the fact their conscious experiences. It was in these instances that they reported a lack of images associated with problem solution (Locurto, 2013). Kulpe found that subjects could not state how they made their judgments. This suggested that it was far more difficult to pin down the contents of the mind (Locurto, 2013). As a result of not being globally accepted, Wundt’s theory of introspection was dismissed and failed to serve a paradigm for psychology. One of the next major fields of psychology was introduced by American psychologist, William James. William James wrote the first American introductory psychology textbook, Principles of Psychology, in 1890 (Locurto, 2013). William James, influenced by Charles Darwin’s biological principles, defined the study of psychology as the study of mental life, but it was the function of mental life that was central-consciousness must have survival value- to his definition. It is in James’ work that the transition from dualism, a term coined by French philosopher Rene Descartes stating that the body exerts a greater influence on the mind than previously believed in history, to a more monistic functionalism where the brain and the mind are the same (Locurto, 2013). Moreover his believed in the free will, according to his auto-motor theory of behavior
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