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By Dr. Stephen F. Davis, Dr. William Buskist

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Some parents would subject a daughter’s suitor to such an examination, to see if he was of good character and a promising provider. Some businesses used phrenologists as personnel offices to test prospective employees. Yet most persons sought the services of a phrenologist for personal counseling (see Sokal, 2001). Phrenologists would not only identify areas of personal strength and weakness but also, in the case of weaknesses, prescribe a program of behavioral change. Some bumps signaled the need for “restraint”; some indentations identified characteristics to be “cultivated” (O.

He founded the American Psychological Association (APA) in 1892 and served as its first president. In the 1890s he was an important force in launching the child study movement, which will be discussed later. His research focused mostly on what would today be called developmental psychology. His most important contribution in that regard was a two-volume work titled Adolescence: Its psychology and its relations to physiology, anthropology, sociology, sex, crime, and religion (1904). This work was important, in part, because it changed the word adolescence from a largely technical term to a word in everyday usage in the English language.

Edward B. Titchener, an Englishman, arrived that same year to direct psychology at Cornell University, and Hugo Münsterberg, a German, was recruited to Harvard University by William James to direct that laboratory. Each of these individuals would prove especially important to the development of American psychology. Structuralism Edward Bradford Titchener (1867–1927) was 25 years old when he arrived at Cornell University. He established a brand of psychology there that would become known as structuralism, a reductionistic approach to the study of consciousness that sought to study consciousness by breaking it down into its fundamental elements, namely sensations, feelings, and images.

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