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The contemporary perspectives in psychology Essay

Which of the contemporary perspectives in psychology makes the most sense to you? Discussion It is evident that psychology is being increasingly used in daily events. Employment for example, in Europe more companies are subjecting potential personnel to psychological profile checks and psychological tests during interviews. Even our social lives are becoming affected. People who are seeking the right partner are using psychological techniques to establish the emotional state of their potential partners. As psychology becomes more and more accessible and understandable to more people, I feel that it will begin to influence our lifestyles more. The evolutionary perspective “focuses on why a particular behavior or physical structure developed and how the behavior or structure aids in adaptation to the environment” (Lahey, 20). Charles Darwin was the innovator who popularized the evolutionary theory. This summarizes how a being can adapt to an environment and keep certain habits, in turn passing these traits along to future generations. Sociocultural perspective “focuses on the different cultures, ethnic identity and other sociocoultural factors to fully understand a person” (Lahey, 17) – which I think is makes the most sense.

At a point in time the psychology field was dominated by Caucasian males. Females and people from different races were not allowed to be in the field or even to obtain a doctoral degree. Thought the years, the percentage of men and women in the field have changed dramatically. Once dominated by men, the field has shifted more toward women dominating the field. The contemporary perspective in psychology that makes the most sense to me is the neuroscience perspective. I think the neuroscience perspective is very important especially within the medical field. I understand why this course is a pre-req for entry into pharmacy school. The neuroscience perspective “focuses on the nervous system in explaining behavior and mental processes. Psychologists are interested in the structures of the brain that play roles in emotion, reasoning, speaking, and other psychological processes” (Lahey, 20). For example, after drinking alcohol you slur you speech and are unable to walk a straight line. Alcohol affects the part of the brain that controls muscle coordination. Also,the illegal drug MDMA/ecstasy effects serotonin levels in the brain.

This plays a role in emotion. While on the drug you have a wide range of good emotions. After the drug is out of the brain you don’t feel as good. The brains of people with schizophernia, bipolar disorder, MS and Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s are different than people without these conditions. MRI’s, EEGS and PETS (scans of the brain) have shown this difference. New drugs have been created to treat these conditions based on neurotransmitters and chemicals in the brain. With more and more research being today on these diseases, better and effective treatments are being developed based on the way are body/brains are built and function. Most psychologists agree “Human beings are biological creatures” (Lahey, 26) The new drug Namenda, for Alzheimer’s works by attaching to a certain receptors and allowing just enough chemical that effects learning and memory. Too much of this chemical and the nerve cells die, too little and information cannot be stored.

I think all of the perspectives have some value. They are different and some similar in explaining behavior and mental processes. “Generally, contemporary psychologists do not align themselves with a single theoretical position. Rather, they integrate the best contributions of each perspective into their own eclectic view.” (Lahey, 25) I think when evaluating behavior and mental processes, each perspective should be considered and the best parts used. I agree with Aga when she says in her post “The evolutionary perspective “focuses on why a particular behavior or physical structure developed and how the behavior or structure aids in adaptation to the environment” (Lahey, 20). Charles Darwin was the innovator who popularized the evolutionary theory.

This summarizes how a being can adapt to an environment and keep certain habits, in turn passing these traits along to future generations.” Many traits are passed along and also bipolar disorder can be passed on to future generations. The behavior of a son/daughter having bipolar disorder can be similar to the mother/father that has bipolar disorder. Also, bipolar disorder is somehow connected with out physical makeup, DNA. That is how it is passed on. “Although Darwin wrote long before the mechanisms of genetic inheritance were understood, he hypothesized that variations occur occasionally in the process of reproduction” (Lahey 20) Who knows maybe bipolar disorder was originally a “mutation”.


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