This history of psychology focuses solely on the modern period and begins in 1927. From a historical standpoint this is an important date, because that is the year in which Percy Bridgman’s The Logic of Modern Physics (Bridgman, 1927) was published. Psychology took the term “operationalism” from that book and made it the primary defining characteristic of the field. Since then, psychology has striven to become not just the “hope of a science” that in 1892 William lames said it was (James, 1892, p. 335), but an actual science based on quantification and reproducibility of results. Arguably, operationalism (also often spelled and pronounced “operationism”), the idea that terms in a science are understood only through the means available to measure them, was the first and the most enduring term from the modern philosophy of science adopted by psychology. It permeates all aspects of the psychological enterprise.
Since 1927, three main divisions of psychology have coexisted more or less independently of each other in an unstable coalition. These divisions are, for the purposes of this narrative, theoretical psychology, applied psychology, and clinical psychology. By 1927 each was clearly discernible and each had practitioners. In that year about 80% of psychology was theoretical, devoted to proposing theories about psychological phenomena and experiments to test them. About 15% of psychologists were employed in translating the results of theoretical studies into practical use, in a way similar to the way that engineers convert physics into processes and products.
Also, about 5% of psychologists were forging an alliance with medicine—specifically with psychiatry—that would eventually have far-reaching consequences for the field.
Since then, those proportions have changed substantially: Today, about 25% of psychologists are theorists, and the other 75% are divided between a range of applications in education, law, and business, on the one hand (another 25%), and a version of nonmedical or paramedical psychiatry’ (about 50%).
The beginning student and the interested citizen alike properly’ understand psychology as a ty’pe of advice giving. Its counseling and consulting roles have become prominent and embedded in U.S. culture. The consequences of psychology’s gradual shift from theory to practice, and to a medical/health orientation rather than a strictly biophysical one, is the single most important feature of the modern era.
While a short account of the history of modern psychology cannot resolve all the issues connected with the shift to a medical and health stance, it can at least foreground them and serve as a reminder to seek the primary sources of energy and conflict in the field in that shift.
- Chapter1 The 1920s
- Chapter 1 The 1930s
- Chapter 3 The 1940s
- Chapter 4 The 1950s
- Chapter 5 The 1960s
- Chapter 6 The 1970s
- Chapter 7 The 1980s
- Chapter 8 The 1990s and Веyоnd
Epilogue: fin Interview
Appendix I: Some Notes on the Chnrncters
Appendix II: Suggestions for Further Rending
History of psychology 101 pdf by David C. Devonis – (Psych 101 series)