Meaning of Psychology

What is Psychology:

Psychology is a discipline that aims to analyze the mental and behavioral processes of human beings and their interactions with the physical and social environment.

The word “psychology” comes from the Greek psycho either psychewhich means ‘soul’, ‘psyche’ or ‘mental activity’, and lodge, which means ‘study’ or ‘treaty’. Therefore, psychology means the study or treatise of the psyche.

According to the Austrian psychologist H. Rohracher, psychology is the science that studies or investigates conscious processes and states, as well as their origins and effects.

Within psychology, at least two approaches are possible and justifiable: that of the natural sciences, which seeks a causal explanation, and that of the philosophical sciences, which seeks an explanation of meaning and sense.

Much of the research in psychology is carried out through the method of systematic observation. In some cases, observation may be occasional.

Meaning of Psychology

Origin and development of psychology

Ancient philosophers such as Socrates, Plato and Aristotle were precursors of psychology, as they reflected on the human soul and its way of relating to the world.

The same was done by later authors such as Saint Thomas Aquinas in the Middle Ages, Descartes in the Renaissance, Christian Wolf and Immanuel Kant, just to name a few.

Naturalistically oriented psychology had its heyday in the 19th century. He was associated with the sensory physiology of J. Müller and H. Helmholtz, and the invention of psychophysical methods of measurement by EH Weber and G. Th. Fechner.

In 1879 experimental psychology arose in Germany with Wundt, who founded the first experimental psychology laboratory. It was from there that the separation between philosophy and psychology took place.

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Psychology soon expanded through the investigation of thought, will, conditioned reflexes (Pavlov), the introduction of factor analysis (Ch. Spearman) and, finally, the measurement of intelligence (A. Binet). .

Main currents of psychology

The psychological currents known today originated from the following main lines:

  • The Gestalt: based on the psychology of form, created by Christian Von Ehrenfels in 1890.
  • Psychoanalysis: refers to the analytical psychology developed by the Austrian physician and neurologist Sigmund Freud (1856-1939).
  • Behaviorism: current dedicated to the analysis of human behavior based on the contributions of Pavlov.
  • Cognitive psychology or cognitivism: current dedicated to the study of cognition or knowledge acquisition processes. It was promoted by Jerome Bruner and George Miller.

In addition to these currents, there are many branches of psychology. Among them we can mention: humanism, functionalism, systemic psychology, psychobiology, physiological psychology, functionalism, associationism and structuralism.

Within basic psychology, there is developmental psychology, learning psychology, art psychology, psychopathology, and personality psychology.

Within applied psychology, there is clinical psychology, child psychology, educational psychology, social psychology, occupational psychology (work and organizational psychology), health psychology, emergency psychology, psychology community and forensic psychology.

Clinical psychology

Clinical psychology is the field that studies and analyzes the patient’s mental and behavioral processes in order to alleviate their pain and improve their human condition so that they can be integrated into society.

Social psychology

The objective of study of social psychology is the social behavior of human beings in the collective context. Analyzes phenomena such as meeting or social encounter, interdependence and social interaction.

See also Social Psychology.

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Occupational psychology

Labor psychology, also called work, occupational or organizational psychology, studies the human behavior of workers in organizations and institutions. It also intervenes in labor processes and in the management of human resources.

See also Occupational Psychology.

Child psychology

Child psychology is the area of ​​evolutionary psychology that deals with the investigation and study of psychic manifestations in childhood through adolescence. In addition to recording each of the evolutionary stages, various functions are investigated in particular, such as the evolution of speech, memory, feelings of value, etc.

See also Evolutionary Psychology.

Color psychology

Color psychology analyzes the effect that colors have on human perception and behavior. It is applied in the areas of design and marketing in order to send messages and provoke specific behaviors in people. According to this theory, some of the emotions that colors transmit are:

  • Yellow: optimism
  • Orange tree: kindness and sympathy
  • Red: arousal, attention
  • Purple: creativity and mystery
  • Blue: confidence and strength
  • Green: peace, organic
  • Grey: balance and calm

See also:

  • Personality theories.