John Watson

July 21, 2009

Born in Greenville, S Carolina, Watson was a student of both Angell and Loeb but was greatly influenced by the writings of Pavlov. Applying the principles of classical conditioning to all learning, Watson became the focal point of behaviorism. [Read more]

Animal Psychology In A Nutshell

July 20, 2009

 Seven people deserve mention in regard to the development of animal psychology. Together they show how positivism and belief that science is the answer to all questions became a pervasive force in psychology. [Read more]

Carl Jung

July 20, 2009


Jung was born and raised in Switzerland, along the shore of Lake Constance, where his father pastored a small Swiss Reformed Church. Jung received his MD from the University of Basel in 1900, and spent the next nine years working in a psychiatric clinic associated with the University of Zurich. [Read more]

Gordon Allport

July 20, 2009

The first modern personality trait theorist was Gordon Allport. In the 1930’s, Allport and his students searched through dictionaries to find words that described personality. They started with 17,953 adjectives but settled on 4504 of them. [Read more]

Edward Thorndike

July 19, 2009

Born in Willamsburg, Massachusetts, Edward Lee Thorndike attended Wesleyan University, and studied under James as Harvard. His initial animal studies used chickens as subjects but Thorndike’s landlady objected to their presence in his room. [Read more]

Francis Galton

July 17, 2009

In contrast to the view of his day, Francis Galton believed that intelligence was inherited. Although most people thought everyone had the same amount of intelligence but that they differed in will and effort, Galton contended that heredity not only played a large role in determining intelligence, it held the primary role.  [Read more]

Vladimir Bechterev

July 15, 2009


A contemporary of Pavlov and a major competitor, Vladimir Bechterev began the first experimental psychology lab in Russia (at the University of Kazan). Following his graduation, Bechterev studied with Wundt, DeBois-Reymond and Charcot. [Read more]

Edward B. Titchener

July 14, 2009

Born in Chichester, England (with a well known family name and no money), Edward B. Titchener attended college (Malvern College and then Oxford) on scholarships. He studied in Wundt’s lab, then moved to Cornell where he stayed for the rest of his life. [Read more]

Robert Woodworth

July 12, 2009


Educated at Amherst, Harvard and Columbia, Robert Woodworth is best known for his S-O-R paradigm. In contrast to the behaviorist’s S-R (stimulus-response) model, Woodworth’s “dynamic psychology” insisted that the organism plays an important part in the process (S-O-R). [Read more]

Rene Descartes

July 12, 2009


Born in La Haye, France, René Descartes came from a wealthy family but was in poor health for most of his life. His mother died with he was very young; his father (a lawyer) traveled a lot) He was raised by his grandmother, together with an older brother and sister. [Read more]

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