What is psychology?
Psychology is the study of the human mind. It explores the connection between our mental processes and our behaviors, covering topics such as personality, brain function, the conscious and unconscious mind, and more. There are multiple branches of psychology. For example, experimental psychology focuses on the use of scientific methods to collect data and perform research. It explores phenomena ranging from personality to cognitive processes. Social psychology explores how people’s thoughts, feelings, beliefs, intentions, and goals are influenced by their interactions with others. Psychological research and knowledge from different branches can be used to analyze and treat patients, including those with mental health issues such as depression and personality disorder.
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How to learn about psychology online
To better understand psychology, learners have the option of pursuing online coursework, including individual courses, an online bachelor's in psychology program, and an online master‘s in psychology program. Additionally, edX offers the option to pursue verified certificates in psychology courses. The level of education a learner should pursue is dependent on personal and professional goals.
Learners can choose from specialized self-paced courses in clinical, developmental and social psychology. An introductory course to clinical psychology can cover the causes of mental illness, exploring common psychological disorders such as anxiety and schizophrenia. Learn how clinical psychologists treat patients with those conditions.
Developmental psychology courses teach about social, emotional, and cognitive development in humans. Courses in human development examine the various stages of language, cognitive, and moral development throughout life. Learners can explore how children develop social attachments and how they grow their abilities to communicate and function in the world.
And social psychology specifically focuses on human interaction. Gain a better understanding of why people think or behave in different ways and what motivates people to act differently in various social settings. This branch of psychology covers topics such as prejudice and stereotypes, exploring how individuals think about themselves and others.
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Careers in psychology
Psychology can provide a rewarding career for anyone with an interest in helping others. Research how human behavior is affected by natural disasters. Explore how children who have experienced tragedy at school can heal from trauma. And help clients experiencing addiction forge a healthy path forward. Explore how psychology can be applied to help individuals and communities with online psychology courses delivered through edX.