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What is Psychology?

Psychology is the study of the mind and behavior. The discipline embraces all aspects of the human experience – from the functions of the brain to the actions of neurons, from child development to care for the aged. In every conceivable setting from scientific research centers to mental health care services, “the understanding of behavior” is the enterprise of psychologists.

Is Psychology a Science?

Yes. Psychology is sometimes considered a natural science and sometimes a social science. Psychological scientists form hypotheses, collect data, and test hypotheses through experiments, quasi-experiments, and correlational studies. There are many areas of psychology, such as clinical, cognitive, developmental, and affective, that can be studied through a neuroscientific, biological, or behavioral lens. Psychology also includes the scientific study of what therapies work to help those who are experiencing struggles related to thoughts, emotions, memories, learning, and relating to others and how to effectively apply these therapies. If you are interested in neuroscience, emotions, thoughts, memories, learning, social interactions, beliefs, cognitive development, psychological disorders, or therapy, psychology is for you!

Why Study Psychology?

An undergraduate major in psychology offers a student preparation for a wide variety of careers. Many majors find psychology to be an excellent preparation for such service-oriented professions as social work, counseling and guidance, special education, and management. Those who pursue graduate work in one of the many fields of psychology often seek positions in teaching and research or applied human services. In addition, the study of psychology provides a knowledge and an understanding of behavior that has applications in other professions as well, including nursing, medicine, law, teaching, business, and public relations.

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Undergraduate Psychology News and Highlights

You don’t need ‘natural talent’ to be good at something says Brooke Macnamara

Medium: Brooke Macnamara, an associate professor in the Department of Psychological Sciences at the College of Arts and Sciences, is cited for her research into the extent that practice of activities contributes to excellence and expertise. Read the article here: https://medium.com/moments-matter/you-dont-need-natural-talent-to-be-good-at-something-51e9165e04ac  

How to find a mental health therapist who’s affordable, nearby and a good fit for you: Coping through COVID

The Case Western Reserve Psychology Clinic at the College of Arts and Sciences was highlighted regarding services available to Northeast Ohioans for coping with stress caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Read the entire article here: https://www.cleveland.com/coronavirus/2021/01/how-to-find-a-mental-health-therapist-whos-affordable-nearby-and-a-good-fit-for-you-coping-through-covid.html  

Research Participants Needed: Experiences of Trans*, Gender Fluid, Genderqueer, and Gender Non-Conforming Adults

Researchers at Case Western Reserve University are conducting an online study of the experiences of transgender, gender non-binary, genderqueer, gender nonconforming, and gender fluid adults. The study involves completing online questionnaires about your experiences and emotions. In order to complete it, you must be at least 18 years of...

Your child may mention COVID-19 during playtime. Experts say that’s OK

Deseret News: Sandra Russ, Distinguished University Professor and the Louis D. Beaumont University Professor in the Department of Psychological Sciences at the College of Arts and Sciences, said that incorporating COVID-19 into children’s playtime can actually be beneficial—as a healthy way for young ones to cope with the pandemic. Read...

Graduate Student Silvia Hernandez quoted in New York Times

Finding Hope When Things Feel Gloomy In analyzing dozens of studies on brief hope interventions in older adults, Silvia Hernandez, a doctoral candidate at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, said cognitive behavioral therapies can significantly improve hope in people struggling with depression, health and bereavement. “We know that if...

Are you a parent of a child between 8 and 12 years old?

Researchers at Case Western Reserve University need your help! We are currently conducting a research study on fatigue and childhood brain injury and need children who have and have not experienced a brain injury. Please view the flyer and contact Jessica Salley Riccardi at jxs1654@case.edu to participate or for more information. Recruitment Flyer

Forget Halloween. Children are frightening year-round.

The New York Times: Sandra Russ, Distinguished University Professor and the Louis D. Beaumont University Professor in the Department of Psychological Sciences at the College of Arts and Sciences, commented on how children talk about death and express their aggression during imaginary play. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/26/parenting/pretend-play-creepy-kids.html

Research on suicidal thoughts

James Overholser, a professor Department of Psychological Sciences at the College of Arts and Sciences, said that passive suicidal ideation is characterized by thinking about dying or a desire to be dead, without actively making a specific plan to carry out those thoughts.   https://uk.style.yahoo.com/had-passive-suicidal-ideation-everyone-061217252.html?guccounter=1

Mandel School Dean Grover C. Gilmore to retire at end of academic year

When Grover “Cleve” Gilmore agreed to lead the Jack, Joseph, and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences in 2002, his appointment was only supposed to last a year. After all, he was a longtime professor of psychology, not social work. And, the request had come from an interim...