The Nature of Psych.
- Psychologist study language and how we recognize words.
- Psychology: Science study of behavior and the mind.
- Behavior: Actions and responses that we can directly observe,
whereas the term mind refers to internal states and processes
(thoughts and feelings) that cannot be seen directly.
- Clinical PSYC: Study and treatment of mental disorders.
- COG PSYC study of mental process. (Consciousness, attention,
memory, decision-making and problem solving.)
- Psycholinguistics: Focuses on the PSYC of language.
Biopsychology: Biological underpinnings of behavior. How brain,
genes, hormones influences our actions, thoughts and feelings.
Developmental PSYC: Examines human physical, psychological
and social development across a lifespan. Ex: Emotional world of
infants or parenting styles that can affect childhood.
Experimental PSYC: Focuses on basic process as learning,
sensory systems (vision, hearing), perception and motivational states.
Industrial-organizational (I/O) PSYC: Examiners people
behaviors in the workplace. Study leadership, teamwork and
Personality PSYC: Study of human personality. Seek to identify
core personality traits and how different traits relate to one another
and influence behaviors.
Social PSYC: Examines peoples thoughts, feelings and behavior
pertaining to the social world: the world of other people.
PSYC (sc of behavioural and mental processes) Biology, Anthropology,
Economics, Sociology, Engineering, Computer Sc. and Medicine
PSYCs SCIENTIFIC APPROACH p.6
- Science is a process that involves studying behavior.
- Empirical evidence is evidence gained through experience and
observation. (Manipulating then observing) We collect empirical data
by exposing people to intellectual tasks and observing how they
Understanding Behaviour: Some Pitfalls of Everyday Approaches
- Media provide us with info to understand humans.
Mix of our own intuition (knowledge that we all commonly know)
and conventional/folk wisdom (our personal beliefs about what makes
- Inaccurate beliefs can provide by all forms of media including us.
- We often take mental shortcuts when forming judgments, which
sometimes measure up poorly. (Ex: Stereotypes) - We may assume. Many factors in real life operate simultaneously to
influence behaviour; we may fail to consider alternative explanations
for why behaviour has occurred.
- Once our beliefs are established, we often fail to test them further.
Using Science to Minimize Everyday Pitfalls p.6-7
- Psychologists usually use statistics to analyze their data.
- When Psychologists publish their affair it allows for other
psychologists to challenge their theories. (To minimize the risk of
- Theres a grand difference between faith and science. (Religion and
what can be proven)
- In principal, science ultimately is a self-correcting process. As better
or more info is gathered that can help support or change something.
THINKING CRITICALLY ABOUT BEHAVIOUR p.7
- Critical thinking involves taking an active role in understanding the
world around you rather than merely receiving info. To reflect on what
the info means, how it fits in with experiences and implications in life
and society. To help validate something.
- Whats the claim?
- Who is making the claim? Credible and trustworthy?
- Whats the evidence and how good is it?
- Other explanations possible?
- What is the most appropriate conclusion?
Of astrology and asstrology: Potential costs of uncritical thinking
- People uncritically accept many misconceptions that do have
concrete harmful consequences. Ex: Buying Baby Einstein to make
your baby smart, (Make statements without scientific evidence)
therapies, hand readers, oils, and needles.
- Pseudoscience a field that incorporates astrology, graphology and
rumpology are dressed up to look like science and it attracts believers
despite its lack of credible scientific evidence.
Psychologys goals p.9
1. Describe how people and other animals behave.
2. Explain and understand the causes of these behaviours.
3. Predict how people and animals will behave under certain
4. Influence or control behaviour through knowledge and control of its
causes to enhance human welfare.If we understand the causes of behaviour and know what the causal
factor are present or absent, then we should be able to successfully
predict when the behaviour will occur. If you can control the causes,
then we can control the behaviour.
Psychology as a basic and applied science
- Basic research quest of knowledge purely for its own sake; applied
research designed to solve specific practical problems.
- The goal is to describe how people behave and to identify the factors
that influence or cause a particular type of behaviour.
In review p.10
- PSYC is the study of behaviour and the mind. (Behaviour refers to
the actions and responses that we can observe; the mind refers to
internal states and processes like thoughts and feelings, that cannot
be seen directly)
- Primary goals of PSYC are to describe, explain, predict and influence
behaviour and to apply PSYC knowledge to enhance human welfare.
- Basic research is the quest for knowledge for its own sake, whereas
applied research is to solve practi