Psychology Conference

Ivan Pavlov by Michael Volker

Early Life and Education

Born on Septemeber 14 1849 in Ryazan Russia. Wanted to become a priest untill 1870. In 1870 he enrolled in the physics and mathematics faculty to take the course in natural science. 1875 Graduated from the University of St. Pertersburg and took an assistantship from Cyon in his laboratory at the Military-Medical Academy; received the degree of Candidate of Natural Sciences. 1879 Graduated from the Military-Medical Academy. He then became a surgeon after becoming an assitsant to a couple of people.


In 1870 Pavlov left his school ofreligion and focused on science. From 1876-1878 he was an assisant to Ustimovich. In 1883 he Discovered dynamic nerves of the heart and submitted thesis for the degree of Doctor of Medicine. In 1890 he was appointed professor of pharmalogy at Military Medical Academy. 1890 Appointed director of physiology department at the Institute of Experimental Medicine in St. Petersburg
June 13, 1891 Gained directorship of the Department of Physiology in the Institute of Experimental Medicine. May 29, 1895 Appointed to Chair of Physiology until 1925
1901 Elected as a corresponding member of the Russian Academy of Sciences.1907 Elected Academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences
1912 Given an honorary doctorate at Cambridge University

Significant Accomplishments

It was at the Institute of Experimental Medicine in the years 1891-1900 that Pavlov did the bulk of his research on the physiology of digestion. It was here that he developed the surgical method of the «chronic» experiment with extensive use of fistulas, which enabled the functions of various organs to be observed continuously under relatively normal conditions. This discovery opened a new era in the development of physiology, for until then the principal method used had been that of «acute» vivisection, and the function of an organism had only been arrived at by a process of analysis. With extreme clarity he showed that the nervous system played the dominant part in regulating the digestive process, and this discovery is in fact the basis of modern physiology of digestion. Pavlov's research into the physiology of digestion led him logically to create a science of conditioned reflexes. In his study of the reflex regulation of the activity of the digestive glands. This discovery of the function of conditioned reflexes made it possible to study all psychic activity objectively, instead of resorting to subjective methods as had hitherto been necessary; it was now possible to investigate by experimental means the most complex interrelations between an organism and its external environment.

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