Structuralism and Functionalism Worksheet Essay Sample

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Complete the following table:

Main Components

-Structuralism is the school of thought that identifies the components of the mind. -The main focus of structuralism is breaking down the mental processes into components and see how they interact with each other. -Determine laws that the elements of consciousness were associated with. -Connect the elements of psychological conditions.

-Structuralism was founded by Edward B. Titchener, whose teacher was William Wundt. -Mental functions are how people function or adapt to the world around them. -Functions in real world situations.

-Functionalism was founded by William James.
-The four points of functionalism are adaptation, integration, latency, and goal-attainment. Contributions to the field of Psychology

-Structuralism was the catalyst for school of thought. Titchener says that people use their consciousness based upon their sensations.
-He founded the Society of Experimental Psychologists.
-Some forms of introspective are used still in the forms of psychophysics and cognitive psychology.

-Formed the basis of comparative psychology with a focus of animal psychology.
-Instead of the thoughts of consciousness, there was an emphasis on functions.
– An acceptance of methodology.
– Focus on individual differences. Criticisms

-Edward Titchener did not move on with the times. “As a result, many psychologist came to regard his structural psychology as a futile attempt to cling to antiquated principles and methods,” (Schultz & Schultz, pg. 98). -Introspection alters the way that consciousness was intended to be studied. Titchener could not explain introspection. -Auguste Comte argued that the mind could not think for itself, and Henry Maudsley expressed that Meticulously trained observers will become biased of introspection. -He viewed animal psychology and child psychology as not being psychology at all. -An approach that was not considered introspective analysis was not considered psychology. -They are interested in the concept of youth culture more than subculture. -They do not consider gender or ethnic related issues in any way. -“Functionalism has been critiqued by many sociologists for its neglect of the often negative implications of social order. Some critics, like Italian theorist Antonio Gramsci, claim that the perspective justifies the status quo, and the process of cultural hegemony which maintains it,” (Crossman, 2014). -Dispute in functionalism about psychology as being a pure or applied science.


Crossman, A. (2014). Functionalist Theory. Retrieved from Schultz, D.P. & Schultz, S.E. (2012). A History of Modern Psychology, (10th ed.). Belmont, CA: Cengage Learning.

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