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Functionalist and a structuralists

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Describe how functionalists and structuralists might study a topic in human intelligence. Show how these two approaches illustrate the nomothetic and the idiographic perspectives.

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Structuralists and Functionalists on Human Intelligence

Structuralism deals with thought and memory as a set of elements. Bits and pieces of information that are perceived and stored. The way that memory operates under this scheme is by association. One object might evoke the image of another due to similarity or congruity, that is, things happening at the same time or context.

In terms of nomothetic processes, generalization derives from the abstraction from particulars. These universals are not real, but are created by the brain from similarities or other shared qualities of objects. Writers like Titchener seem to lead to an ideographic approach for no other reason than objects were the only realities. We might create "classes" of objects such as genre or species, but these are products of the human mind. Hence, since there are no intrinsic connections among objects (other than our chance associations), the uniqueness of empirical experience is important to Titchener (Raygor, 2005).

Since experience and abstraction are the only way we come to learn or understand anything, interpretations and experience are unique. This is the essence of the ideographic idea. One of the consequences coming from Titchener's extreme nominalism is that objects exist only in accidental, not essential, relations. Therefore, our approach to ...

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