The word ‘psychology’ originated from the Greek term “psyche”, which means spirit or soul and “logos”, which means study. So, the answer to the question, what is psychology is basically the study of the mind.
Psychology is an academic and applied discipline that studies the human mind and behavior. Research related to psychology seeks to explain and understand how human beings think, act and feel.
The scientific basis of psychology is its scientific method on which psychologists rely in their research. The scientific method means that psychologists reach their conclusions by identifying a specific problem or question, formulating a hypothesis, collecting data through observation and experiment, and analyzing the data.
General principles of psychology are to enable specialists to investigate human development throughout the lifespan from birth to death, examine mental and physical health, care and treat people who are emotionally distressed.
Psychology borders on the biological sciences at one end and touches on the social sciences at the other. This broad range makes psychology a science of many faces. Among psychology’s architects were philosophers, physicists, physiologists, physicians, as well as specialists in many other disciplines, including anthropology, linguistics, and even computer science.
Five Basic Goals in Psychology
Description. It is important to understand the problem first. Hence, an observation is made and the problem is described in detail.
Explanation. The description is solely based on observation. But, psychologists need to use their skills and expertise and explain why one person did what he did.
Prediction. After the root cause has been understood, the next is an inference or prediction, where the psychologists explain what the person might do in future.
Control. Next is control. After the problem has been understood, now it is time to deal with it. In order to cope with the problem, it must be taken under control so that the negative behavior is not repeated again.
Improvement. After the actions have been controlled, it is noted if there is some improvement in the case. If not, then a different approach is applied so as to help the person heal properly.
Psychology is both real and theoretical. While some psychologists spend more time on research and thinking about the deeper depths of the mind, other psychologists pay attention to solving everyday life problems.