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Critically evaluate the impact behaviourism has had on psychology For hundreds of years philosophers speculated about the mind and in around the 1880s the popular method of psychology dealt only with the conscious mind The experiments carried out at this time were criticised for their lack of objectivity and by the 1920s a new brand of psychology emerged in the form of behaviourism Psychology became a recognised discipline in around 1897 when Wilhelm Wundt started the first psychology lab in Germany Wundt along with others attempted to investigate the mind through introspection and observed their own conscious mental processes While analysing their thoughts images and feelings they recorded and measured their results under controlled conditions and aimed to sort conscious thought into its basic elements as a chemist would with a chemical compound This theory was known as structuralism A particular critic of this method in the early 1920s was John Broadus Watson 1878-1958 who felt that introspection was subjective and therefore erroneous He also felt the only way forward was by using methods that could be observed by more that just one person and this could be achieved by studying behaviour He wrote that Behaviourism claims that consciousness is neither a definable nor a usable concept that it is merely another word for the soul of more ancient times Watson 1924 Behaviourist theories of learning are often called stimulus-response S-R and though only classical conditioning fits the S-R model the other major form operant conditioning is often included under the same heading though it is significantly different Classical conditioning is triggered involuntarily by a particular environmental stimulus This means that a stimulus that does not normally produce a particular response can be paired with another stimulus that does eventually resulting in both stimuli inducing the same effect even when used separately A good example of this was shown in the first experiments by Ivan Petrovich Pavlov 1849-1936 in the early 20th Century During
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