1. Choose one person from the following list whom you feel played an important role in the history of psychology: Freud, Pavlov, Skinner, Maslow, or Piaget. Describe what that person did, the approximate time that this person lived, what makes their contribution important, and criticisms of their work or theoretical position.
2. You are an experimental psychologist interested in finding out how effective a new medication might work for treating depression. Describe a study you might conduct to reach some conclusions on this matter. Be sure to define and provide examples of the following terms and concepts, demonstrating your understanding of each: hypothesis, independent variable, dependent variable, random assignment of participants, ethical guidelines.
3. David’s history teacher asked him why so many German people complied with Hitler’s orders to systematically slaughter millions of innocent Jews. David suggested that the atrocities were committed because the Germans had become unusually cruel, sadistic people with abnormal andtwisted personalities. Use your knowledge of the fundamental attribution error and Milgram’s research on obedience to highlight the weaknesses of David’s explanation.
4. Choose a behavior that you would like to modify or change using the principles of operant conditioning. Be sure to use and explain the following terms: operant conditioning, positive reinforcement, negative reinforcement, punishment, schedules of reinforcement, shaping and extinction.
5. Imagine that you were involved in a legal case in which an eyewitness claimed that he has seen a person commit a crime. Based on your knowledge about memory and cognition, discuss some of the problems of eye-witness accounts.