Discuss early schools of Psychology.
Psychology is a multifaceted discipline that has a long and complex history, with many different schools of thought emerging over the years. Some of the earliest schools of psychology include:
Structuralism: Structuralism was an early school of psychology that was founded by Wilhelm Wundt in the late 19th century. Structuralists believed that the mind could be understood by breaking it down into its individual components, or structures, and studying each component separately. Structuralists used techniques such as introspection, in which people were asked to describe their thoughts and feelings in great detail, to try to understand the structures of the mind. Structuralism was an influential early school of psychology, but it has since been largely replaced by other approaches.
Functionalism: Functionalism was another early school of psychology that emerged in the late 19th century. Functionalists believed that the mind could be understood by studying the functions or purposes of its various components. They were particularly interested in how the mind adapts to the environment and how it helps people solve problems and achieve their goals. Functionalists used techniques such as naturalistic observation and case studies to study the mind and behaviour. Functionalism was an influential school of psychology that helped to shift the focus of psychology away from structuralism and towards the study of real-world behaviour and mental processes.
Psychoanalysis: Psychoanalysis was a school of psychology that was developed by Sigmund Freud in the early 20th century. Psychoanalysis is based on the idea that unconscious thoughts and feelings, particularly those related to sex and aggression, play a significant role in shaping behaviour and personality. Psychoanalysis uses techniques such as free association and dream analysis to try to uncover these unconscious thoughts and feelings, and it often focuses on the role of early childhood experiences in shaping personality. Psychoanalysis has been highly influential in the field of psychology, but it has also been the subject of much criticism and debate.
Behaviourism: Behaviorism was another early school of psychology that emerged in the early 20th century. Behaviourists believed that psychology should focus on observable behaviour, rather than on mental processes and that behaviour could be explained by learning and conditioning. Behaviourists used techniques such as operant conditioning, in which rewards and punishments are used to shape behaviour, to study animal and human behaviour. Behaviourism was a dominant force in psychology for many years, but it has since been largely replaced by more cognitive approaches that focus on mental processes.
In conclusion, early schools of psychology such as structuralism, functionalism, psychoanalysis, and behaviourism all contributed to the development of psychology as a discipline and helped to shape our understanding of the mind and behaviour. While these schools of thought are no longer dominant, they continue to influence contemporary psychology and are an important part of its history.
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