Friday, June 7, 2013

What is cognitive psychology? Would you classify cognitive psychology as a hard science or a soft science? Explain your answer.

          Cognitive psychology is a scientific approach to studying the mind, which arose as a response to the flaws in other methods in studying the mind (Willingham, 2007). Cognitive psychology is a field that is nearly 50 years old; it is a field of psychology, which emphasizes the study of mental processes that include perceiving, thinking, believing, problem solving, remembering, and speaking, and it seeks to identify behavior by characteristics other than its obvious properties. Cognitive psychology replaced behaviorism, and it acknowledges internal states and rejects introspective techniques that other perspectives employee. Cognitive psychology ideas grew out of older ideas, or in direct opposition to older ideas (Willingham, 2007). I would classify cognitive psychology as a hard science. The reason why is because it uses pre-defined methods, such as the scientific method to test hypotheses, it adheres rigidly to rigorous standards, and makes solutions directly from theories. Soft sciences normally rely on qualitative descriptions in obtaining results.

Willingham, D. T. (2007). Cognition: The thinking animal (3rd ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson/Prentice Hall.

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