Psychology is the scientific study of the mind and behaviour. Psychologists are actively involved in studying and understanding mental processes, brain functions, and behaviour. Psychology includes the study of conscious and unconscious phenomena, including feelings and thoughts It encompasses the biological influences, social pressures, and environmental factors that affect how people think, act, and feel.
Types of Psychology
There are 8 main types of psychology
1. Abnormal psychology
3. Social Psychology
4. Cognitive psychology
5. Developmental psychology
6. Personality psychology
7. Forensic psychology
8. Industrial-Organizational psychology
Abnormal psychology that studies unusual patterns of behaviour, emotion, and thought, that is understood as a mental disorder. Although many behaviours could be considered as abnormal, this branch of psychology deals with behaviour in a clinical context.
Biopsychology that analyses how the brain, neurotransmitters, and other aspects of our biology influence our behaviours, thoughts, and feelings.
For example, biopsychology examines topics such as how your hands are able to inform your brain what you are touching, how the brain interprets this information, and how your brain communicates with your hand to pick up the glass and drink water.
Social psychology is the study of how individual or group behaviour is influenced by the presence and behaviour of others. Social psychology focuses on three main areas:
1. social thinking
2. social influence
3. and social behaviour.
The decisions you make and the behaviours you exhibit might depend on not only how many people are present but exactly who you are around. For example, you are likely to behave much differently when you are around a group of close friends than you would around a group of colleagues or supervisors from work.
Cognitive psychology is defined as the study of individual-level mental processes such as information processing, attention, language use, memory, perception, problem solving, decision-making, and thinking.
Examples of things studied in this field are attention span, memory, reasoning and other functions and actions of the brain that are seen as a complex mental process.
,Developmental psychologists focus on human growth and changes across the lifespan, including physical, cognitive, social, intellectual, perceptual, personality and emotional growth. The study of developmental psychology is essential to understanding how humans learn, mature and adapt. Throughout their lives, humans go through various stages of development.
Personality psychology is the scientific discipline that studies the personality system. The discipline seeks to understand a person’s major psychological patterns and how those patterns are expressed in an individual’s life. Personality psychology helps people better understand the factors that play a role in personality. It also allows us to know more about how certain personality characteristics affect behaviour. For example, some traits are linked to higher levels of happiness and well-being.
Forensic psychologists apply psychological theory to criminal investigation to help understand psychological problems associated with criminal behaviour, and the treatment of those who have committed offences. They work with all aspects of the criminal justice system. Forensic psychology specializations include adult psychology, child and family psychology, forensic neuropsychology, and law enforcement.
Examples of forensic psychology services
Providing psychological treatment to inmates in prison to help them to change their behaviour (anger management, for example) Using psychological principals to understand criminal behaviour and assist police with investigations.
Industrial and organizational psychologists focus on the behaviour of employees in the workplace. They apply psychological principles and research methods to improve the overall work environment, including performance, communication, professional satisfaction and safety.
Psychological theories are systems of ideas that can explain certain aspects of human thoughts, behaviours and emotions. Psychology researchers create these theories to make predictions for future human behaviours or events that may take place if certain behaviours exist. These theories are based on a hypothesis, which is backed by evidence. Thus, the two key components of a psychological theory are:
1. It must describe a behaviour.
2. It must make predictions about future behaviours.
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