General Psychology 9:05 MWF FALL 2010


Danielle Herman

Humanistic Perspective: Focuses on how people strive for potential and self determination in a positive and healthy manner. Emphasizes worth in an individual. Instead of performing laboratory experiments they asked people to report their experiences and the feelings that came from them.


Abraham Maslow created a hierarchy of needs pyramid that is based off humans motivations for their needs. The theory is people meet their needs from the bottom of the pyramid to the top.raham Maslow was born April 1, 1908 in Brooklyn, New York. His parents pushed him to exceed academically. He studied law at CCNY.
Maslow and his wife moved to Wisconsin, where he attended college and got interested in psychology and humans motivations.

He received his Bachelor’s in 1930, his master’s in 1931 and his PhD in 1934.
When generating the ideas that became his theory he would study warm, happy and healthy people. By studying these people he created the definition of what self actualization is. Someone who has reached self actualization is someone who has lived a full and happy life with experiences that they have learned from.

  • Psychological Needs- oxygen, water, air and vitamins and minerals.
  • Safety Needs- security, stability, and structure.
  • Belonging Needs- belonging to a family, or community, friendship and an affectionate relationship.
  • Esteem Needs- (two different versions a higher and a lower) The lower – respect, attention from others. The higher- self respect, confidence and independence.
  • Self Actualization- reaching our full potential. Feeling like we used all our effort to accomplish our goal.

A very small percent of the world is actually self actualizing. According to his theory, you must meet your lower level needs to be self actualized. Such as, if you are hungry you will eat, if you are lonely you will find someone to be with, and if you feel unsafe you will be more cautious.

Some of our world leaders have met those terms, including Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson, Albert Einstein and Eleanor Roosevelt. Maslow formed his theory from studying these people. They met his criteria because they where able to differentiate lies from truth, deal with problems and find solutions, and had a different view of life. They could take people as they are, they were independent but also enjoyed long meaningful relationships. Maslow believed their values were natural.

Peoples views differ from others and their values perfectly fit each individuals personality.

Brandon Standage

Early Psychology

Psychology is a very important part of the world today. Most people don’t stop to think about how psychology affects the world. Where would we be without it? There wouldn’t be many of the medicines we have now. Also there would be a lot more people who would have mental conditions and they wouldn’t be able to get help with them. This could result in a lot higher suicide rates.

So where did psychology come from? Wilhelm Wundt was the first person to start studying psychology. Wundt was born on August 16, 1832. Wundt had many amazing accomplishments in his life. Perhaps his most successful accomplishment was opening up the first psychology lab in eighteen seventy nine, in Germany. He is credited for being the founder of psychology. Wundt died in nineteen twenty shortly after writing an autobiography.

Sigmund Freud also did a lot for psychology. Freud was born in 1856 in the Austria-Hungarian Empire. In 1900 Freud tried interpreting why we had dreams. He wrote twenty four books on interpreting dreams. He covered unconscious thoughts and used sexuality as the driving force for his experiments. Although, around the time of the holocaust the Nazis took over Austria and took all of Freud’s books and burned them. So there are no longer any original copies existing. Today there are many people that believe Freud’s work was very successful and useful. On the other side there are critics that believe that Freud was just a pervert and his studies were pointless.


Ivan Pavlov won the 1904 Nobel peace prize award for his interesting work with dogs. He learned that dogs would start salivating before they were even going to get food. Pavlov discovered this interesting fact by watching the dogs when his assistant entered the room. His assistant always feed the dogs and after a while when the assistant entered the room the dogs would start salivating without the assistant even bringing in food.

After Pavlov witnessed how the dogs reacted to just seeing his assistant he got to wondering what else they would salivate too. He started to play a metronome when he would feed the dogs. Sure enough after a couple weeks of playing the metronome before they feed the dogs they would start salivating just to the sound of the metronome.

Pavlov findings were arguably the most interesting and useful of all the experiments. His findings helped show us how a person should go about training an animal. Not only that it helped to prevent animals from eating other animals. For example, they injected sheep with something that made the meat taste bad. Then they fed the meat to a pack of coyotes. The injected meat made the coyotes sick. After the coyotes had tried the meat and got sick they left all the other sheep alone.

Wundt Freud and Pavlov were the greats of their time. They made studies and experiments that still affect some people’s everyday lives. So now when you stop to think about psychology it’s easier to see how it affects the world and it’s hard to imagine how the world would be without it.

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