What are the core assumptions of the biopsychological approach?

Biological Psychology Worksheet

Answer the following questions with 50-to 100-word responses. Prepare to discuss your answers.

  1. What are the core assumptions of the biopsychological approach?

Biopsychological approach is also known as physiological psychology, which focuses on the relationship between behaviors, biological makeup, and experiences (Carlson, 2010). Studies of the functions of the nervous system include examples of brain damage, by damaging or disconnecting conscious brain functions from the speech mechanisms in the left hemisphere (Carlson, 2010). The phenomenon of blindsight is partial damage to the visual system on one side of the brain (Carlson, 2010). The phenomenon of unilateral involves consciousness operations of the verbal mechanisms of the left hemisphere (Carlson, 2010). The understanding of the language functions of the brain will lead to an understanding of how the brain may be conscious of its own existence (Carlson, 2010).

  • What historical disciplines converge to create biological psychology?

Physiological psychologists use both reduction and generalization to explain behavior (Carlson, 2010). Generalization refers to the classification of phenomena according to their essential features so that general laws can be formulated (Carlson, 2010). Reduction refers to the description of phenomena in terms of more basic physical processes (Carlson, 2010). Generalizations use the traditional methods of psychology whereas reduction explains behaviors in terms of physiological events within the body primarily within the nervous system (Carlson, 2010). Physiological psychology builds upon the tradition of both experimental psychology and experimental physiology (Carlson, 2010).

  • What are some of the earliest examples of a biological approach to studying behavior?

The most popular example is the evolution of the Darwin’s theory, which is based upon the concepts of natural selection (Carlson, 2010). The theory suggests that it is important to have an understanding of the performing functions of organs, body parts, and behavior (Carlson, 2010). Changes in genetics may cause the production of different proteins, which alters physical characteristics (Carlson, 2010). After the changes confer with a selective advantage, the new genes will be transmitted to other members of the species (Carlson, 2010). Behaviors may also evolve, through the selective advantage of alterations in the structure of the nervous system (Carlson, 2010). Examples of homo neanderthalis evolving into homo sapiens is the perfect study

  • What are some examples of modern careers that have resulted from studying biological psychology? Include an overview of the careers.

A career in physiological psychology must be obtained with a graduate degree and serve years as junior scientist. Physiological psychology includes the study of neuroscience (Carlson, 2010).A career as a Neuroscientists concerns there study with all aspects of the nervous system: its anatomy, chemistry, physiology, development, and functioning (Carlson, 2010). The research of neuroscientists ranges from the study of molecular genetics to the study of social behavior (Carlson, 2010). Most professional physiological psychologists are employed by colleges and universities, where they are engaged in teaching and research (Carlson, 2010).

  • How is biological psychology viewed by other professionals in psychology today?

The field provides a unique forum for the collaboration and interaction of professionals unparalleled in other areas of scientific and clinical study (Rosenzweig, Breedlove & et al, 2001). Biological psychology contributes to the advancement of empirical and theoretical perspectives (Rosenzweig, Breedlove & et al, 2001). The diverse professionals include representation of investigators trained in the areas of anatomy, anthropology, behavioral medicine, biochemistry, clinical neuropsychology, endocrinology, genetics, molecular biology, paleontology, psychiatry, and psychophysiology (Rosenzweig, Breedlove & et al, 2001). Working together, the professionals study the structural and functional aspects of behavior across species, explore the developmental processes of biology and behavior across the life span, and utilize findings to formulate practical applications that promote human health while respecting each other views and opinions (Rosenzweig, Breedlove & et al, 2001).


Carlson, N. R. (2010). Physiology of behavior. (10th ed.). Boston, MA: Allyn & Bacon.

Rosenzweig, M.R., Breedlove, S.M. & Leiman, A.L. (2001). Biological Psychology: An Introduction to Behavioral, Cognitive, and Clinical Neuroscience. (3rd ed.). Sunderland, MA.

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