Compare and contrast the Psycoanalitic Theory with the Behaviorist Theory

Essay by rorysimmUniversity, Bachelor'sB, January 2003

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Compare and contrast two psychological approaches

By Rory Simmons

My intention in this essay, is to compare and contrast the following psychological approaches Behaviourism and Psychoanalysis, in doing this I will unpack the key points of these two approaches, highlighting the differences and explaining them.

The first approach I will look at is Psychoanalysis; the most famous psychologist linked to this is Sigmund Freud an Austrian psychologist who first proposed his Psychodynamic approach. These perspectives states, that there are three main sections to the human psyche. The first is the "ID" this is the natural drive, which seeks gratification constantly, the second is the "EGO" this is our personal set of values developed as children, and finally the "SUPEREGO" a set of learned values, taken from society and our parents rules and values. Also he believed that as children we all go through five stages oral, anal, phallic, genital, and latency.

If the child is either under or over gratified in any one of the stages then they will have problems in adulthood.

Another element of Freud's theories was his studies of dreams; Freud believed that dreams acted as a form of fantasy, a defence mechanism against the unacceptable urges of the id. Fantasy allows the individual to act out events in the imagination, which can satiate the urges of the id, which are repressed. Freud theorized that dreams were a subconscious manifestation of these repressed urges, and that they served mainly to satisfy sexual and aggressive tendencies

The other theory I will refer to is Behaviourism; this is an approach, which states that all psychology must be directly measurable and recordable, if it is to be regarded as scientific. In his 1924 book Behaviourism, Watson made the notorious claim that, given a dozen healthy infants; he could determine the...