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Psychology - Essay Example

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Name: Title: Course: Tutor: Date: Psychology 1. Description of Psychology In my understanding, psychology refers to a field of study of the human mind in relation to the exhibited behaviors. It entails what one thinks about and using this information to the benefit of the subject or a third party…
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Download file to see previous pages Indeed, Ash (2004) supports this postulate, noting that up to the early 1990s, psychology was literally defined as the study of human mind and soul. According to this scholar, the term psychology has been derived from two Greek words, psyche and logos, meaning soul or mind and word respectively. Therefore, adopting the definition by Kalat (2013), psychology refers to the science of studying human behavior and mind. Of the many subfields in psychology, this paper focuses on learning, social and developmental psychologies. Learning psychology entails the learnt experiences that could change human behavior. In this context, the theory of operant conditioning, for instance, postulates that punishment and reinforcement serve as learning tools. In the modern context, reinforcement has become popular in shaping children’s behavior positively as people move away from corporal punishment to positive reinforcement. Social psychology studies how the social context influences human behavior. It entails how thoughts, feelings, beliefs, goals and intentions get constructed and how these influence human interactions. The social identity theory in this context postulates that humans need to uphold a positive aspect of not just personal but also social identity, which is partly attained through the emphasis of the desirability of own group, focusing on what distinguishes it from lesser groups. For example, students identify with their school and would always want to it perceived as the best. Finally, studying the progressive psychological changes in humans as they age describes developmental psychology. It considers theoretical areas like emotional, social, biological and cognitive processes. The theory of cognitive development appreciates that humans develop their cognitive abilities through actions that are self-motivated in the world. That explains how children acquire mental representation of information, gradually acquiring habits they learn from adults. 2. What Psychology Means to My People To understand what psychology means to my people, I interviewed my friend, Smith. According to Smith, psychology is a science of studying the thinking of people that causes them to behave the way they do so as to bring out positive aspects from the subject. I sought to find out what informed his definition. The reason he referred to it as a science was because the study entails a lot of learning of human cognition. Psychologists engage in intense research to understand why people behave the way they do at their places of work, learning institutions and homes among others. They use scientific approaches in carrying out these studies. Furthermore, from the thoughts arises human behavior. The way one behaves is a true reflection of what that person thinks. To support this argument, Smith gave the example of a child. When a child refuses to go to school, it could be because such a child has thought of how the school environment is unfriendly. Probably, the child could have thought of how better it would be remaining home to watch television as opposed to being in class. Therefore, thinking inspires behavior in humans, hence the focus of psychology. Finally, just like any other study, psychology intends to relate one’s thinking and behavior to positively benefit people. Therefore, in the explanation of psychology, Smith argues that there has to be an indication that it aims at positively transforming human lives. However, my friend also admitted ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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