Psychological Perspectives Explaining Behavior


Martin is a 21-year-old student, and he suffers from bizarre behaviors. His parents noticed that he could talk to himself, Martin refused to use his cellphone to avoid activating a deadly chip in his brain, and the guy accused his parents of conspiring with the aliens. This information explicitly demonstrates that Martin has some mental issues, but it is challenging to state for sure what factors contributed to this state of affairs. Three psychological perspectives, including psychodynamic, behavioral, and biological ones, can be used to explain Martin’s behavior.

Psychodynamic Perspective

It is possible to use the psychodynamic perspective to explain why Martin has such mental problems. Sigmund Freud developed this approach that focuses on the role of the unconscious mind (Cherry, 2019). According to this perspective, every psychological issue was caused by a particular event in the past. In particular, this approach focuses “on developmental pathways from infancy to adulthood and on how disruptions in developmental tasks as a result of complex interactions among biological and psychosocial factors are expressed across the lifetime” (Luyten & Fonagy, 2021, p. 2). In other words, it is necessary to identify what happened to a person while they were young to understand current behaviors.

The information above can be applied to Martin to explain his bizarre behavior. Even though the case study does not present such information, it is still possible to suppose that he experienced some shocking events in his childhood. The rationale behind this supposition is that the first bizarre episodes appeared without any evident reasons and when Martin was in high school. If one applies the psychodynamic perspective, it is necessary to talk to the guy and his parents to identify his childhood experiences. This information is of significance because it can help find the most suitable treatment strategy to address Martin’s condition.

Behavioral Perspective

In addition to that, it is possible to rely on a behavioral perspective to comment on Martin’s case. The primary characteristic feature of this approach is that it focuses on observable and learned behaviors rather than internal states (Cherry, 2019). his description demonstrates that a person can make some actions or decisions because there are some external motivations. Unusual experiences and multiple stressors can relate to an individual’s inability to appraise and reinforce them properly. This information results in the fact that a person develops unusual and even unhealthy behaviors to respond to new challenges. When such a problem exists for an extended period of time, individuals develop strong beliefs that affect their everyday lives.

As for Martin’s case, the behavioral perspective can be applied to this individual. Firstly, the emergency of bizarre episodes in high school and their strengthening in university can be associated what many stressful experiences that education can bring. Since these challenges were severe for the guy, the mental disorder became a learned behavior to respond to those experiences. In addition to that, marijuana abuse could contribute to the problem of drug overuse, another learned behavior, because it affected Martin’s mind. Consequently, the behavioral perspective stipulates that Martin witnessed educational challenges, external motives, and the mental disorder became a suitable way to respond to the issue.

Biological Perspective

Finally, a biological perspective is worth considering because it can provide relevant information. This approach stipulates that behavior has physical and biological bases, which makes scientists focus on people’s nervous system, brain, genetics, immune system, and others (Cherry, 2019). That is why this psychological perspective draws significant attention to laboratory tests and screening methods. For example, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is suitable for identifying how the brain functions and whether its separate areas have any issues (Cherry, 2019). According to this information, the given approach tries to find physical explanations for why a person has behavioral problems.

The given perspective can also be applied to the individual under analysis. On the one hand, the case study reveals that Martin has an estranged aunt with similar mental issues. That is why it is reasonable to rely on genetics to identify whether the guy has any hereditary conditions. On the other hand, it is possible that a brain dysfunction contributes to the behavior. That is why it is reasonable to subject Martin to MRI to identify whether such issues exist. Consequently, the biological perspective has a few approaches to explain Martin’s behavior, and it is rational to rely on them to determine whether the individual has health peculiarities that result in the problem.


The case study under analysis has demonstrated that Martin suffers from some mental issues. That is why it is rational to use a suitable psychological approach to understand and explain his behavior. One can consider the situation through psychodynamic, behavioral, and biological perspectives. Each of these approaches offers its own explanation as to what makes Martin behave abnormally. However, it is impossible to mention that any of the views are better than the others because the three focus on various phenomena. That is why it is reasonable to apply them all to find the broad picture of Martin and his condition.


Cherry, K. (2019). Perspectives in modern psychology. Verywell Mind. Web.

Luyten, P., & Fonagy, P. (2021). Integrating and differentiating personality and psychopathology: A psychodynamic perspective. Journal of Personality, 00, 1-14. Web.

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PsychologyWriting. "Psychological Perspectives Explaining Behavior." January 25, 2023.