Psychology is a science that involves the behavior of a person and their state of mind. In addition, it also involves the conscious and the unconscious part of a person. Psychology can also be defined as an academic discipline that includes various interests and when combined, they bring out an understanding of all brain factors and properties. Psychology has been used on different occasions, to heal, reconcile, to remember and also to understand. More so, psychology can be applied to anyone; children, teenagers, youths, adults and the older people. According to Robert, Jean and Kristin (2007), Psychology became common in the 1980s where many people studied to become psychologists. Today, the number of psychologists has heightened to almost a million. To be specific, the paper will discuss three important figures in the history of psychology; how they brought about new understanding and also how their studies and finding has influenced the discipline today.
First, Burrhus Frederic Skinner was one of the best researcher and teacher. Skinner started the study of psychology known as behaviorism. He was born in 1904 in Pennsylvania with a younger brother, Edward. In addition, Fred was resourceful, imaginative and playful; this helped him deal with the problems he had as a teenager and in his youthful years. Skinner suffered a traumatic loss after his brother and grandfather passed away, living him vulnerable and broken to pursue his dreams. Later in August 1926, he read about behaviorism, which was considered as the answer to the criticism claiming that psychology was not a true science. In 1928, Skinner started psychology classes at Harvard. More so, he was determined to make his own discoveries on behaviorism. In addition, Skinner believed that positive reinforcement was always very effective than severe punishment. Today, therapists have used Skinner’s ideas to help people overcome phobias without using emotionally driven actions. Recently, scientists have declared that learning involves different factors and that delayed action can be much more effective than immediate ones.
Secondly, Jean Piaget was another important figure in the history of Psychology. The Swiss psychologist was born in August 1896 and died in 1980. Piaget is known for his extensive study in child development. More than anything, he was dedicated to the importance of children education claiming that education is the only thing capable of saving the society from any downfall. Piaget established several organisations such as the International Center for Genetic Epistemology in 1955 while he was working at University of Geneva. The Centre led to great finding and research hence being referred to as the Piaget Factory. Furthermore, his ideas led to the creation of the study of development as a major and well-known discipline in psychology. This field has been studied and acknowledged to date.
Thirdly, Sigmund Freud was one of the best neurologists in the history of psychology. Freud was born in 1856 and died in 1939. In essence, he founded psychoanalysis, a method that is used in the treatment of psychopathology. In this process, the patient converse with a psychoanalyst giving in ways of treatment. When he created psychoanalysis, he developed very crucial therapeutic techniques including the use of free association. More so, Freud analyzed dreams as a way to fulfill wishes and he also discovered libido which is an energy comprised in someone’s mind which bring about erotic attachments. Later, Freud developed a deep understanding of religion and culture. Today, psychoanalysis is an influential part of psychology, psychiatry and psychotherapy. According to Tom Burns, psychoanalysis continues to generate arguments regarding its therapeutic efficacy, its status in the scientific world and its contribution to the feminist cause. Nonetheless, his work has been contemplated with western thought and culture.
In conclusion, Skinner, Pigeat and Freud bring about the development of major disciplines in the history psychologists. They gave psychology a meaning and new understanding that has been referred and used to date. Many psychologists today follow in the footsteps of various important figures in the history of psychology.