Psychological Perspectives and Behaviours

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There are various ways of assuming how individuals behave in certain ways. Modern psychology comprises of divergent perspectives alike psychodynamic, behaviorist, cognitive…etc.Some psychologists might delineate the human behaviors as a result of early childhood experiences like Freud, others might accredit specific behaviors to biological factors as genetics e.g. Charles Darwin. Besides, some assume that individuals behaviors are learned ones. Theses assumptions are established as psychological perspectives. Two perspectives are psychodynamic perspective and Behaviourist approach and these approaches can be applicable to Amy and Andrew’s scenario
“Psycho” assigns consciousness and the term dynamic specify to change of activity. This approach was proposed by Sigmund Freud in the late nineteenth/early twentieth centuries (Cited in Hill, 2001,pg 159). Freud ( 1890s-1930s) evolved a collection of ideas that enhanced the psychodynamic approach to psychology. His theories were clinically derived – i.e., occupied on what his patients told him throughout the therapy. The psychodynamic therapist would usually be treating the patient for depression or anxiety affiliated disorders.

Freud’s psychodynamic approach has had an impact on the expansion of psychology. (Cited Pennington et al., 2002,pg .11). He supposed that most our mental life transpires at an unconscious level substantially modified the way people perceived themselves. By claiming few sectors of the mind are above our consciousness signifying that we aren’t capable of defining ourselves, which effect other psychologists who were involved in the psychodynamic approach as like Carl Jung (1964).

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In Freud’s psychoanalysis of personality, the conscious mind may be a reservoir of feelings, thoughts, urges and recollections outside of our acutely aware consciousnesses, most of which are unacceptable or unpleasant, such as feelings of pain, anxiety and conflict. The conscious mind consists of everything inside an individual’s consciousness. This is the side of our mental process that we will assume and discuss in an exceedingly rational means. Besides, preconscious, include things that might not be presently aware of, we can pull into the conscious awareness when needed. For instance, you might not presently be thinking about how to do long divisions, of personality which is present from birth is the id which is driven by the pleasure principle, that striven for instantaneous gratification of all desires, wants and needs. If these needs are not content immediately, the limit is a state anxiety or tension. For example, an increase in hunger or thirst should produce an immediate attempt to eat or drink. The ego is the reality principle of personality that mediates between the id and superego. The superego holds all our internalized moral standards and ideals that we require from both parents and society-our sense of right and wrong it provides guidelines of making judgments.

The ego has a crucial role in protecting us from threatening thoughts in our unconscious. It protects us through defense mechanisms including repression which is blocking unpleasant thoughts by pushing them into the unconscious. For example, sexually abused in childhood or traumatic event happened in the past but individuals blocked such thoughts and deposited them into the unconscious. Displacement is the diversion of emotions such as anger from the original source to substitute target. For example, your friend said something hurtful and instead of confronting your friend, you later cash out at your sister.
While, Projection involves individuals attributing their own thoughts, feelings and motives to another person. Thoughts most commonly projected onto another are the ones that cause guilt such as aggressive and sexual fantasies or thoughts. For example, you might hate someone but your superego tells you that such hatred is unacceptable. You can ‘solve’ the problem by believing they hate you.

Another presupposition that Sigmund Freud ( 1909) created in his psychodynamic approach was that time of life contend a crucial role within the development of the adulthood temperament. Freud declared that development occurs via 3 phases of psychosexual development representation development: the oral, anal and phallic stages. The phallic phase is outlined because the most vital stage in the psychosexual stage as a result of it consists of the Oedipus complex. This is an associate unconscious distinction within the four-to six-year previous kid through that the kid wants to possess the opposite-sex parent and eliminate the same-sex parent. The conflict is resolved by distinctive with the same-sex parent. Memories of the conflict ar inhibited in childhood, yet may come back to concern the person in adulthood. (Cited in Pennington et al., 2002,p.10)

One of the most consequential applications of the psychodynamic approach is the establishment of therapeutic techniques that assist sufferers from overcoming psychological disorders, for instance, obsessive-compulsive behaviors and anxiety associated issues. The authentic approach to treatment developed by Freud is specified as psychoanalysis, which required daily sessions lasting for hours, which continued for many months or even years.

The psychodynamic configuration of medical aid is situated on Freud’s psychotherapy. He declared that people experiencing mental disorders have repressed threatening thoughts and feelings. Techniques a psychological state, intellection, and dream analysis need to be accustomed to assemble insight into the client’s issue and former experiences. The treatment typically necessitates transference, with the client’s transferring powerful sensations towards anyone of great importance to his/her life onto the therapy. Psychoanalysis depends mostly on the therapist’s explanation of what the client state. Therefore, this explanation might be inaccurate. The dissent occurring according to the efficiency of psychoanalysis, thus it is predominately acknowledged as reasonably influential. This perspective utilize hypnosis, dream interpretation, slips of the tongue and free association as a proposal of treatment. These therapists are manipulated to medicate mental disorders like anxiety and depression. Furthermore, it’s connected to the primitive conjecture of the psychodynamic perspective every individual’s behavior is controlled via the unconscious thoughts and if outrageous occasions attained memories may be repressed toward the conscious hence this can result in mental health conditions.

According to the analyst, we tend to square measure born with a psyche that has sure in-built drives and needs. Later in his career, analysts outlined these as eros and Thanatos. This makes sure the components of our temperament – such as aggression – a segment of our nature. However, Sigmund Freud conjointly argues that we tend to square measure formed by our childhood experiences, particularly our relationship with our folks. This nurture decides that defense mechanisms we tend to adopt and that they persist to choose our temperament and the way we tend to show aggression towards people and ourselves

As stated by Freud, individuals are raised amidst a psyche that has sure in-built drives and needs. Henceforth, Sigmund Freud outlined these as eros and Thanatos. This makes sure the components of our temperament – such as aggression – a segment of our nature. However, Sigmund Freud conjointly argues that we tend to square measure formed by our childhood experiences, particularly our relationship with our folks. This nurture determines the defense mechanisms we tend to adopt and that they persist to choose our temperament and the way we tend to show aggression towards people and ourselves. The theory also focuses mostly on sexual issues and de-emphasizes the importance of interpersonal and social factors in causing and maintaining mental disorders. Freud’s psychoanalytic theory was based on a case study. The use of the case study method allows details, qualitative data to be controlled and more information can be controlled about the individual’s life.

Freud relay particularly on occurrence studies like a little Hans and collecting qualitative information. As well as, there’s less quantitative information within the inside of his analysis. This could impact his findings which can become onerous to examine and rely mostly on clarification he proposed.


In Amy’s circumstance, the psychodynamic approach will strongly assert that all of Amy’s memories remain in her unconscious mind as she has no memories remind after her story. Equally important, the perspective may also propose that the anxiety, panic disorders and the breathing difficulties she recently experienced are an outcome of her previous experiences throughout her childhood. Her fear is repressed into the unconscious mind as she has no memory of what had occurred recently. As this may not be always recognized but it will arise in other ways suchlike feeling horrified, getting panic attacks or feeling isolated. To conclude this, as psychoanalysis is considered to be an influential way of treating mental disorders like depression, Amy’s disorder is much likely to be cured via the psychoanalysis procedure too.

The essence of the behavioral approach is the supposition that all behavior is learned and that we’re born as a blank slate or tabula rasa. Experience and cooperation with our surroundings make us who we are as a result of creating stimulus-response units of behavior in reaction to the environment. This perspective is defined as environmental determinism as it demonstrates that our behavior is resolute by the environments in which we live. (cited in Eysenck, 2006,pg 532). Behaviourism is concerned with the learning of all behaviors which occur through conditioning(classical and operant conditioning). Firstly classical conditioning is related to the Russian psychologist Ivan Pavlov, whether operant is affiliated with B.F Skinner. Skinner’s ideas are often classified as radical behaviorism and this is because he proclaimed for the control of the human community via behaviorist concept. (Cited in Bellingham et al., 2008).

A very crucial distinction between methodological and radical behaviorism examines the expanse to which environmental elements affect behavior. Watson’s (1913) methodological behaviorism asserts the mind is a tabula rasa (a blank slate) at birth. In other words, radical behaviorism accepts the perspective that living things are born with inherent behaviors, and thus recognizes the role of genes and biological constituents of behavior.

Classical conditioning is a learning procedure in which neutral stimulus becomes related with an inborn relevant stimulus and obtains the capacity of evoke an indistinguishable, response.(King, n.d,pg.169-170)

The theory of classical conditioning was introduced by the Russian physiologist, Ivan Pavlov Classical conditioning refers to learning through association. For instance, the Russian psychologists Ivan Pavlov who assessed and worked with dogs by ringing a bell whenever the food has been given, therefore the dog learned that the sound of bell-ringing was associated with gaining food, and accordingly salivated whenever they heard a bell ring. Pavlov found that if the bell was repeatedly rung without food, the salivation process( conditioned stimulus) will gradually disappear, so the behavior is known to be extinguished. And if the conditioned response is extinguished, then the dog would often salivate when the bell rings. This is defined as spontaneous recovery. This procedure can be used to explain how emotional responses may be learned. Where, Operant conditioning, is a learning process where the response is preside over by ramification. However, the possibility of a specific response happening is possibly strengthened or weakened because of reinforcement as well as punishment. A reinforcement assists to strength behavior while punishment helps to decrease behavior. Reinforcement is diverted into three different principles. First, which is known as positive reinforcement which involves adding something( generally something rewarding).A sample of this of could be gaining a person with a parise after an appropriate behaviour has been exhibited.Negative reinforcement involve removing away something( generally something aversive) or unpleasant stimulus succeeding a response in the hope that it will happen again. Another illustration of this could be when fastening the seablet in the car thus the beeping sound can be avoided.In consideration of unwanted stimulus is eliminated the seablet is fasten (.Cited in King, n.d,pg.180-181).Punishment is outlined as a ramification which lessen the likelihood a response could arise when utilizing punishment, by means when punishment weakness performance.Positive punishment is the addition of an unwanted stimulus after a response in order to reduce or stop the response. For instance , requesting someone to fulfill an additional work for misconduct.On the other hand, negative punishment is the shifting of an acceptable stimulus after a feedback hence the response is produced rarely or avoided. To give insance, stopping a child from playing a video game when misbehaving.

Behavioral therapies( behavior modification)was advanced during late 1950s & 1960s.(cited in Eysenck,pg 405&413), the aim is to reinforce desirable behaviours and eliminate undesired maladaptive ones by teaching clients new behaviours to minimize to eliminate the issue.Classical conditioning comprises of techniques to treat psychological complications as like phobias and anxiety.First,systematic desensitization necessitate counterconditioning and anxiety hierarchy is build in each phase the patient is advised to relax and learn new response that is incompatible with Phobia.Although, if systematic desensitisation is accomplished successfully , the patient decides on the stimulus hierarchy and only moves on to the next stage of the hierarchy when they feel ready. This respects the patient’s autonomy and helps them feel less anxious.Secondly,flooding focus to disturb phobic revolution by signifying that there’s no basis to the fear,yet it could be disturbing and emerge in increased resistance.One advantage of flooding is that it is fast,realistic and relatively ethical.Systematic desensitisation is much more ethical than flooding, because participants are only exposed gradually to the thing that they fear and they only move.

On the other hand, operant conditioning principles is operated on the token economy therapy ,that dispense rewards for reaching minor behavioral goals.A beneficial impact may vanish when rewards aren’t given and this maybe a result of the nature context-dependent learning,or rewards demolish intrinsic motivation.It also undervalue the import of cognitive therapy.One thing to consider about behavioural therapies is that they different to other types of theories because they are action-based.

This perspective perceive phobias like behavioural compilation.It indicate that there are various displeasing actions as well as undesirable habits.The behavior can also result provoking distress and terror.People may act restfully when been exposed to their feared target,therefore this can make them feel peaceful.

The behaviourist approach consists of strong scientific reliability.Throughout the consideration of operant and classical,Freud had concentrated mainly on perceptible actions inside a controllable laboratory environment.Yet, analysis is duplicated securely to evaluate integrity.

However, one limitation of the behaviourist approach is the over-reliance on animal research. Some psychologists argue that these studies tell us little about human behaviour, as humans may not respond in the same way as rats/pigeons.Consequently,we may be unable to extrapolate the findings from animals to humans which limits the effectiveness of behaviourist research.
The behaviorist believe that learning is similar between species, animals being more convenient to study and having less ethical restrictions.For instance, Pavlov tested his ideas on paired associations and classical conditioning on dogs or of skinner,whose theories on operant conditioning were tested on rats/cats thus both results were generalized to humans.

Moreover,experimental methods allow researchers to infer relationships between variables,implying cause and effect.This type of of scientific methodology produces reliable, replicable and generalized results.The kind of artificial settings occuring in laboratory experiments are not representative,therefore lacks ecological validity.


  • Pennington, D., Boswell, K., Dancer, L., Mcloughlin, J., Robinson, D. and Smithson, R. (2002). Introducing psychology. London: Hodder Arnold, p.10.
  • Eysenck, M. (2006). A2 psychology. 2nd ed. London: Psychology Press Ltd, pp.544,545.psychology. 2nd ed. London: Psychology Press Ltd.
  • Bellingham, M. (2008). AQA psychology B. Cheltenham: Nelson Thornes.
  • King, L. (n.d.). Experience psychology. 2nd ed. London: McGraw-Hill Education.
  • Hill, G. (2001). AS level psychology through diagrams. 2nd ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

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