Edward Thorndike (1874–1949) supported the scientific movement in education. He based teaching practices on empirical evidence and measurement.  Thorndike developed the theory of instrumental conditioning or the law of effect. The law of effect states that associations are strengthened when it is followed by something pleasing and associations are weakened when followed by something not pleasing. He also found that learning is done a little at a time or in increments, learning is an automatic process and all the principles of learning apply to all mammals. Thorndike's research with Robert Woodworth on the theory of transfer found that learning one subject will only influence your ability to learn another subject if the subjects are similar.  This discovery led to less emphasis on learning the classics because they found that studying the classics does not contribute to overall general intelligence.  Thorndike was one of the first to say that individual differences in cognitive tasks were due to how many stimulus response patterns a person had rather than a general intellectual ability.  He contributed word dictionaries that were scientifically based to determine the words and definitions used.  The dictionaries were the first to take into consideration the users maturity level.  He also integrated pictures and easier pronunciation guide into each of the definitions.  Thorndike contributed arithmetic books based on learning theory . He made all the problems more realistic and relevant to what was being studied, not just to improve the general intelligence .  He developed tests that were standardized to measure performance in school related subjects.  His biggest contribution to testing was the CAVD intelligence test which used a multidimensional approach to intelligence and the first to use a ratio scale.  His later work was on programmed instruction, mastery learning and computer-based learning:
Cognitive psychology is one of the more recent additions to psychological research, having only developed as a separate area within the discipline since the late 1950s and early 1960s (though there are examples of cognitive thinking from earlier researchers). The cognitive approach was brought to prominence by Donald Broadbent 's book Perception and Communication in 1958 . Since that time, the dominant paradigm in the area has been the information processing model of cognition that Broadbent put forward. This is a way of thinking and reasoning about mental processes, envisaging them as software running on the computer that is the brain. Theories refer to forms of input, representation, computation or processing, and outputs. Applied to language as the primary mental knowledge representation system, cognitive psychology has exploited tree and network mental models. Its singular contribution to AI and psychology in general is the notion of a semantic network . One of the first cognitive psychologists, George Miller is well-known for dedicating his career to the development of WordNet , a semantic network for the English language. Development began in 1985 and is now the foundation for many machine ontologies.
Welcome to the Department of Psychology at The Ohio State University. Our department is noted for a long history of excellence in research, teaching, and service. With approximately 50 faculty, 150 graduate students, and 1800 undergraduate majors, we are one of the largest departments at Ohio State. We are also one of the top ranked psychology departments in the country providing extensive course offerings and research opportunities in seven program areas. Faculty in the department work in diverse areas of human and animal cognition, emotion, and behavior and engage in many interdisciplinary research activities. By exploring the web links above, you can learn about our educational and research programs, the people responsible for them, and admission requirements.