Doing Psychology

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Doing Psychology

The first week covers key conceptual and historical issues relating to Psychology. It begins with the textbook definition of Psychology as a science of the mind, and asks: what is science, and what is the mind? The next two lectures consider the what and why of Psychology: the objects of psychological study, and the aims of psychological knowledge.

The seventh week focuses on quantitative methods in Psychology. The lectures discusses experimental design, surveys and questionnaires, and the importance of research synthesis.

 

Lecture 1
What is Psychology?
Psychology is defined as the science of the mind, but what is science, and what is the mind? This lecture describes how science has been defined as a particular kind of knowledge, and provides a brief overview of some philosophical issues concerning the relationship between mind and brain.
Monday, 21 September, 2020 - 09:00 to Friday, 25 September, 2020 - 17:00
Lecture 2
Psychological objects: what we study
This lecture considers the relationship between mental stuff in our heads and the words that we use to describe it. It discusses how psychological descriptions define the object of study, reflect certain assumptions, and more generally shape how we think about mental phenomena.
Monday, 21 September, 2020 - 09:00 to Friday, 25 September, 2020 - 17:00
Lecture 3
Psychological aims
This lecture considers why psychologists ask the questions that they do. It discusses how these have been shaped by the aims of psychology as a science, as a body of knowledge that is applicable to others, and as a reflection of wider society.
Monday, 21 September, 2020 - 09:00 to Friday, 25 September, 2020 - 17:00
Learning Outcomes: 

By the end of this section, students should be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of some of the key problems of defining science (versus non-science) and the mind (versus the brain), and of how psychological knowledge is shaped by both the ways we describe mental phenomena, and the wider aims of science and society.

References: 

Reading for these lectures can be found on Learn.