The word Psychology is derived from the Greek words

  • Psyche ------ soul, mind
  • Logos ------- study, science

Definition of Psychology:

The scientific study of behavior and mental processes

  • Scientific study means that Psychologists use scientific research to answer the questions.
  • Psychologists study the thing that we can see (Human Behavior) and the things that we cannot see (Mental processes such as thoughts, feelings, emotions, etc.)

Common sense of Psychology:

  • It makes the psychologist a face reader
  • It makes the psychologist a mind reader

Four main stages of Psychology:

1. Philosophical stage ------ Study of mind/ Study of soul.

2. Structural stage ------- Science of mental life or consciousness.

3. Behaviorist stage ------- Science as an observable behavior.

4. Modern stage ------- Considered as the science of behavior and mental process.

Characteristics/ Nature/ Features of Psychology:

  • Psychology is the combination of Nature and Nurture
  • It doesn’t believe in Stereotypes or Superstition
  • It possesses a body of the Fact
  • Scientific psychology began in 1879
  • The word Psychology was coined in 1590
  • It has its own applied aspects
  • It makes prediction about Human Behaviors


Goals of Psychology:

  • To understand
  • To predict
  • To explain
  • To control
  • To describe

Approaches to Research in Psychology:

Psychologists use descriptive, experimental and correlational methods to conduct the research. Descriptive or qualitative, methods include the case study, naturalistic observation, surveys, archival research, longitudinal research and cross sectional research.

Psychology is considered as a science:

Psychology studies how Humans and Animals behave under certain conditions. Psychologists use the scientific methods to conduct their research.

The scientific method is a standardize way of making observations, gathering data, forming theories, testing predictions and Interpreting the results.

As a Science Psychology has some basic Character:

  • Investigation is possible
  • Observation and Experiment is possible
  • Accurate measurement is possible
  • Objectivity is possible
  • Prediction is possible
  • Generalization is possible
  • It also studies the cause effect relationship


As by Sigmund Freud:

Stresses on the human motives and desires that are contained in the individual’s unconscious experiences which are normally driven out of awareness

His theory encompasses many of the themes in psychoanalysis about the unconscious and uses it to explain the personality.