Psychology Discipline and Its Diverse Nature

Introduction

The purpose of this paper is to analyze the diverse nature of psychology as a discipline. The discipline of Psychology is perhaps more diverse than any other discipline. It has more than 50 divisions, which focus on different elements of psychology and human existence. The discipline of Psychology is almost applicable in all aspects of human interaction, and it is related to other disciplines (Nordqvist, 2014). The discipline of psychology through its subdisciplines and subtopics has emerged to resolve various but specific topics within the study of the human mind and behavior. Most importantly, the diverse nature of the discipline of Psychology has the ability to account for various elements of human interactions.

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The influence of diversity on psychology’s major concepts

Generally, the diverse nature of the discipline of Psychology has allowed it to influence major concepts in psychology. The most prominent concepts in Psychology include humanistic, cognitive-behavioral, psychoanalysis, and environmental psychology, among others. These concepts provide diverse solutions to unique challenges of the human mind and behaviors. They also provide a theoretical background to account for human nature.

Psychological concepts focus on various elements of the human mind and behaviors, particularly behaviors, social issues, cognitive factors, and other unconscious elements noted in human behaviors (Gazzaniga, 2010).

Psychologists have diverse opinions or modes of thinking on similar concepts and therefore offer alternative solutions. This diversity makes the discipline rich in ideas.

It is imperative to recognize that the diversity of the discipline of Psychology has led to several concepts or theories for explaining the same issue. Hence, except for major issues, Psychology lacks a single unifying factor on different issues due to diverse points of view.

“Two” examples of subdisciplines and “two” examples of subtopics within psychology

Clinical psychology aims to capture, avert, and relieve human psychological distress and enhance well-being and health. Psychotherapy and psychological evaluation are core practices in clinical psychology. Today, clinical psychologists have extended their practices to include management of patients with brain conditions. Clinical psychologists apply different therapeutic techniques to manage their clients. There are four main theoretical concepts, which guide clinical psychology. They include family therapy, psychodynamic, cognitive-behavioral, and humanistic perspectives.

Given the availability of many therapeutic methods, there has been a call to integrate different therapeutic techniques so that they can provide comprehensive approaches to human issues. Today, available research findings have shown that psychotherapy could work best when different approaches are combined (Leichsenring & Leibing, 2003). As a result, psychologists have focused on developing eclectic skills in other subdisciplines to ensure integrated approaches in interventions.

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Developmental psychology concentrates on human mind development throughout individuals’ lifespan (Gazzaniga, 2010). Developmental psychologists want to comprehend individuals’ perceptions and actions during different periods in life. Developmental psychologists have shown interest in moral, social, cognitive, and neural development. Researchers may adopt various methods to study individuals in their natural settings or use controlled laboratory experiments to determine outcomes. Developmental psychologists seek to understand mental activities and processes in children must find suitable approaches to do so in a supportive environment. At the same time, this subdiscipline also studies aging and old age from adolescence to old age periods when there are rapid changes in the body. Developmental psychologists rely on different psychological theories in their studies.

Application to other disciplines and venues in contemporary society

Both clinical psychology and developmental psychology focus on the issues of human welfare. Given the diverse nature of psychology, there are also relationships between its subdisciplines, topics, and other disciplines.

Clinical psychology relates to other areas, such as counseling psychology and neuropsychology. In addition, social workers and psychiatrists also find the subdiscipline and its subtopics applicable in their works. It has been noted that clinical psychology has a broad knowledge base that no single specialist can become an expert in all subtopics of this subdiscipline. Hence, clinical psychologists must collaborate with other specialists and work within their expertise. They must also acknowledge their weaknesses in certain areas and scope of practice. Clinical psychologists also refer their clients to other specialists either within or outside the field of clinical psychology.

Developmental psychology also relates to several other subdisciplines of psychology alongside other disciplines such as linguistics when studying language difficulties in learners. These applications help psychologists and other experts to understand changes in human life. Hence, it has become common for various disciplines to share approaches in aspects of human development, such as emotional, cognitive, social, physical, and personality development (Gazzaniga, 2010). Moreover, development psychologists help nurses to understand various conditions such as Alzheimer and prenatal conditions.

Relate the subdisciplines and subtopics to the theoretical perspective

Clinical psychology and developmental psychology and their related subtopics relate to theoretical perspectives in psychology, such as cognitive-behavioral and psychoanalytical. Psychoanalytical and cognitive-behavioral provide unique and diverse interventions for human mental health.

Psychoanalytic theoretical perspective focuses on unconscious directives to restore cognitive challenges related to behaviors and thought disorders. Conversely, cognitive-behavioral perspective aims to influence human behaviors to restore health. Psychoanalytic aims to identify and change internalized unconscious conflicts of the brain and resolve conflicts to consciousness. Cognitive-behavioral perspective strives to change thought processes, which will later alter behaviors.

These theoretical perspectives of psychology apply different techniques. For instance, cognitive-behavioral therapy has gained widespread recognition because of its effectiveness and short duration supported with practical approaches (Reisner, 2005). While strengths of cognitive-behavioral therapy have been demonstrated empirically for many disorders, some scholars have questioned the effectiveness of psychoanalytic approach. Overall, it is imperative to recognize that these theoretical perspectives strive to restore human health by finding solutions to inappropriate thoughts, behaviors and conflicts.

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“Psychological contribution” to society in the areas of work, education, health, and leisure

Generally, psychological knowledge has been used in evaluating and treating human mental conditions (Nicholas & Stern, 2011). At the same time, the diverse nature of the discipline has allowed it to contribute to other segments of society, particularly in comprehending and resolving many issues within the human existence. Many psychologists engage in different forms of therapeutic interventions and practicing in schools, hospitals, work environments and even in leisure related settings. In addition, several psychologists are engaged in many different forms of research related to mental health, behavior, learning, memory and language among others. They mainly work in medical schools or clinical settings.

In addition, some psychologists practice in industrial and organizational settings. This diversity reflects the strength of the discipline and its influence in society. As many psychologists focus on much more eclectic approaches, psychology will continue to shape society in different ways.

Conclusion

This essay has analyzed the diverse nature of psychology as a discipline (Nordqvist, 2014). Diversity of the discipline has resulted into several subdisciplines and subtopics, which attempt to resolve human mental health and behavioral challenges. All these subdisciplines and subtopics of psychology have distinct, specific approaches to problems of human health. Diversity of the discipline has resulted into a widespread relationship with other subdisciplines and distinct disciplines. For instance, developmental psychology and clinical psychology relate and affect each other and other disciplines in different ways. There is a growing trend toward a more eclectic approach in the discipline of psychology and psychologists collaborate to ensure improved human health and behaviors.

References

Gazzaniga, M. (2010). Psychological Science. New York: W.W. Norton & Company.

Leichsenring, F., & Leibing, E. (2003). The effectiveness of psychodynamic therapy and cognitive behavior therapy in the treatment of personality disorders: A meta- analysis. The American Journal of Psychiatry 160(7). Web.

Nicholas, D., & Stern, M. (2011). Counseling psychology in clinical health psychology: The impact of specialty perspective. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice. Web.

Nordqvist, C. (2014, September 26). What is psychology? What are the branches of psychology? Medical News Today. Web.

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Reisner, A. (2005). The common factors, empirically validated treatments, and recovery models of therapeutic change. The Psychological Record 55(3), 377–400.

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