Majors Field of Study Overview The field of Psychology involves the scientific study of the human mind and human behavior.
This definition enjoyed widespread currency for decades. However, this meaning was contested, notably by radical behaviorists such as John B. Watsonwho in his manifesto defined the discipline of psychology as the acquisition of information useful to the control of behavior. Also since James defined it, the term more strongly connotes techniques of scientific experimentation.
History of psychology The ancient civilizations of EgyptGreeceChinaIndiaand Persia all engaged in the philosophical study of psychology. Historians note that Greek philosophers, including ThalesPlatoand Aristotle especially in his De Anima treatise addressed the workings of the mind. This body of knowledge involves insights drawn from introspection and observation, as well as techniques for focused thinking and acting.
It frames the universe as a division of, and interaction between, physical reality and mental reality, with an emphasis on purifying the mind in order to increase virtue and power.
Chinese scholarship focused on the brain advanced in the Qing Dynasty with the work of Western-educated Fang Yizhi —Liu Zhi —and Wang Qingren — Wang Qingren emphasized the importance of the brain as the center of the nervous system, linked mental disorder with brain diseases, investigated the causes of dreams and insomnia, and advanced a theory of hemispheric lateralization in brain function.
Divergent Hindu doctrines, and Buddhismhave challenged this hierarchy of selves, but have all emphasized the importance of reaching higher awareness.
Yoga is a range of techniques used in pursuit of this goal. However, Indian doctrines influenced Western thinking via the Theosophical Societya New Age group which became popular among Euro-American intellectuals. In Germany, Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz — applied his principles of calculus to the mind, arguing that mental activity took place on an indivisible continuum—most notably, that among an infinity of human perceptions and desires, the difference between conscious and unconscious awareness is only a matter of degree.
Christian Wolff identified psychology as its own science, writing Psychologia empirica in and Psychologia rationalis in This notion advanced further under Immanuel Kantwho established the idea of anthropologywith psychology as an important subdivision.
However, Kant explicitly and notoriously rejected the idea of experimental psychology, writing that "the empirical doctrine of the soul can also never approach chemistry even as a systematic art of analysis or experimental doctrine, for in it the manifold of inner observation can be separated only by mere division in thought, and cannot then be held separate and recombined at will but still less does another thinking subject suffer himself to be experimented upon to suit our purposeand even observation by itself already changes and displaces the state of the observed object.
However, this discipline did not yet embrace experimentation. Gustav Fechner began conducting psychophysics research in Leipzig in the s, articulating the principle that human perception of a stimulus varies logarithmically according to its intensity.
Wundt, in turn, came to Leipzig University, establishing the psychological laboratory which brought experimental psychology to the world. Wundt focused on breaking down mental processes into the most basic components, motivated in part by an analogy to recent advances in chemistry, and its successful investigation of the elements and structure of material.
Stanley Hall who studied with Wundt, formed a psychology lab at Johns Hopkins University in Maryland, which became internationally influential.
Hall, in turn, trained Yujiro Motora, who brought experimental psychology, emphasizing psychophysics, to the Imperial University of Tokyo.The field of psychology had its modern origin just over years ago, and yet interest in the field has grown rapidly.
Researchers with broad and varied interests have expanded the field, and as a result there are many different subdisciplines. Psychology is a broad area that encompasses a number of specialized fields, including clinical, counseling and school psychology.
Read on to learn about a few of the different psychology fields in which you could specialize. Social psychology is the study of how humans think about each other and how they relate to each other. Psychology encompasses many subfields and includes different approaches to the study of mental processes and behavior: Mental testing.
was around five times higher than in fields such as space- or geosciences. Fanelli argues that this. The field of psychology had its modern origin just over years ago, and yet interest in the field has grown rapidly.
Researchers with broad and varied interests have expanded the field, and as a result there are many different subdisciplines.
Highlighted here are several key areas of psychology. The field of Psychology involves the scientific study of the human mind and human behavior. There are a variety of majors and concentrations available for students to choose a . There are a number of different branches of psychology used to study the brain, mind, and behavior.
Explore some of the major ones. There are a number of different branches of psychology used to study the brain, mind, and behavior. Explore some of the major ones. Psychology is always evolving and new fields and branches continue to .