psych vocab

Wilhelm Wundt

established the first psychology laboratory at the University of Leipzig, Germany

Stanley Hall

American psychologist who established first research lab and American Psychological Association.

Mary Whiton Calkins

First female president of the APA

Margret Floy Washburn

first woman to earn a Ph.D. in psychology

John B. Watson

founder of behaviorism

Sigmund Freud

Austrian neurologist known for his work on the unconscious mind. Father of psychoanalysis.

Abraham Maslow

Humanistic psychologist known for his "Hierarchy of Needs" and the concept of "self-actualization

Dorothea Dix

Activist who helped improve conditions of mental patients


the idea that knowledge comes from experience, and that observation and experimentation enable scientific knowledge


early school of thought promoted by Wundt and Titchener; used introspection to reveal the structure of the human mind


early school of thought promoted by James and influenced by Darwin; explored how mental and behavioral processes function- how they enable the organism to adapt, survive, and flourish


the process of looking inward in an attempt to directly observe one's own psychological processes


the view that psychology (1) should be an objective science that (2) studies behavior without reference to mental processes. Most research psychologists today agree with (1) but not with (2).

humanistic psychology

historically significant perspective that emphasized the growth potential of healthy people and the individual's potential for personal growth

cognitive psychology

the scientific study of mental processes, including perception, thought, memory, and reasoning

evolutionary psychology

the study of the evolution of behavior and the mind, using principles of natural selection

positive psychology

the scientific study of human flourishing, with the goals of discovering and promoting strengths and virtues that help individuals and communities to thrive

biopsychosocial psychology

an integrated approach that incorporates biological, psychological, and social-cultural levels of analysis

social-cultural psychology

the study of how situations and cultures affect our behavior and thinking


a branch of medicine dealing with psychological disorders; practiced by physicians who sometimes provide medical (for example, drug) treatments as well as psychological therapy

clinical psychology

a branch of psychology that studies, assesses, and treats people with psychological disorders

basic research

pure science that aims to increase the scientific knowledge base

applied research

scientific study that aims to solve practical problems

biological psychology

the scientific study of the links between biological and psychological processes

psychodynamic psychology

a branch of psychology that studies how unconscious drives and conflicts influence behavior, and uses that information to treat people with psychological disorders