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Cognitive Psychology Definition

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Cognitive Psychology Definition Paper | Kyle GrossoPSY/360December 21, 2014 |

Cognitive Psychology is a branch of psychology that is concerned with our mental processes, such as perception, thinking, learning, and memory. It is also specifically concerned with the relationship between sensory stimulation and the overt expression of behavior (Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary, n.d.). There are many disciplines in psychology that helped in the development of cognitive psychology, such as Structuralism, Functionalism, Behaviorism, and Gestalt psychology (Galotti, 2014). Structuralism is a discipline of psychology developed by Wilhelm Wundt that established a “science of mind” to determine the laws and principles that explain our conscious experiences. Wundt wanted to identify the different parts of the brain and study how all these parts work together to make up the human brain as a whole (Galotti, 2014). Functionalism was another discipline of psychology that aided in the development of cognitive psychology. Functionalism was developed by William James who, like Wundt, was also concerned with our conscious experiences. But contrary to Wundt, James was more concerned about why the mind works the way that it does (Galotti, 2014).
Both functionalism and structuralism had a major impact in the development of many different disciplines of psychology. Structuralism was considered the first school of thought in psychology and influenced experimental psychology. Functionalism helped influence behaviorism and applied psychology. Functionalism was developed as a counter argument to Wundt’s theory of structuralism (Benjamin Jr, 2007), you were either in favor of one side or the other. Behaviorism also influenced cognitive psychology in becoming a discipline of psychology. Behaviorism was a very important discipline in psychology in itself. There were many…...

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