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Third force movement. Leading psychologists in third-force psychology development - Essay Example

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According to Grogan (2008), Third force or humanistic psychology is based on the study of the whole person and studies people as individuals. …
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Third force movement. Leading psychologists in third-force psychology development
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Download file to see previous pages There was a strong desire to develop an approach that considered the individual as a whole and internal self through a measurable and structured design that emphasises the individual values and experiences (Nicholas, 2008). Third force opposes behaviouristic and psychoanalysis approach to study of psychology. Bernstein (2011) asserts that psychoanalysis studies the unconscious motivations that influence human behaviour while behaviourist psychology focuses on observable behaviours that occur through either classical conditioning or operant conditioning. The early approaches to psychology failed to account for the free will, moods, feelings and conscious learning that occur in human beings. This field of psychology gained prominence in the 1970s and 1980s and offered expanded horizons on the study of human behaviour and more effective methods in practice of psychotherapy (Nicholas, 2008). Humanistic psychology offers new set of values for approaching human nature and human conditions that influence interactions in the society. Some basic characteristics of humanism include the non-mechanistic view of human beings, the rejection of determinism, acceptance of conscious human behaviour and holistic adaptive status of human behavioural actions (Bernstein, 2011). Humanistic psychology is geared at attaining self-actualisation, development of meaningful relationships, attainment of self-awareness and acceptance of inner feelings of an individual. The approach can be termed as a ‘common-sense psychology’ that fosters creativity, advancement of ideal self and achievement of person’s goals (Kalat, 2011). By the mid-20th century, only behaviorism and psychoanalysis approaches remained influential since movements like structuralism and functionalism has lost their distinctiveness. Psychoanalysis and behaviourism approaches had some shortcomings that led a group of psychologists like Abraham Maslow and others to start the third-force psychology that combines philosophy of existentialism and romanticism (Bernstein, 2011). Humanism recognises the value of human beings and their potential since it emphasises the belief of wholeness and free will. Third-force psychology is based on the assumptions that human being cannot be reduced to components and supersede the sum of their parts and they exist in a uniquely human context as well in cosmic (Rowan, 1998).). Human beings are self-aware in the context of other people and make conscious choices. Accordingly, human beings are capable of making intentional aims, goals and seeking value. This approach to psychology appreciates individual’s potential and importance of personal growth that leads to self-actualisation (Rowan, 1998). For instance, Abraham Maslow advanced the idea of hierarchy of needs in 1943 in his motivation theory while Carl Rogers published the client-centered therapy in 1951 that takes care of the unique needs of the client (Kalat, 2011). Humanistic psychology entails several approaches of counseling such as hierarchy of needs of Abraham Maslow and existential psychology developed by Rollo May. Rollo May acknowledged the need of human choice while Carl Rogers developed the person-centered therapy approach that considers the client’s need for self-development and self-direction (Bernstein, 2011). One of the core strengths of humanistic psychology is its appreciation of role of individuals I controlling their conscience and credits the environment for its influences on internal desires and thoughts of human beings (Kalat, 2011)). The psychology is applicable in several fields of study such as healthcare, education and therapy thus making ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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