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For many centuries, scientific and psychological knowledge has accumulated in the framework of philosophy, biology, medicine, pedagogy, sociology and other sciences related to the study of man. In the second half of the 19th century, psychology became an independent science. Since then, she has developed a large number of her own methods of scientific knowledge aimed at studying the facts, laws, and mechanisms of mental life.
Scientific psychology is based on empirical scientific facts, that is, facts obtained experimentally. This distinguishes psychology as a science from the philosophical knowledge of man with the help of reasoning and logical conclusions.
Scientific and psychological facts are characterized by objectivity, that is, they are independent of the subjective opinion or position of the scientist. The objectivity of scientific and psychological research is given by the use of methods such as systematic observations, experiments, modeling, and document analysis.
Scientific psychological knowledge is rational and conscious.
All this contributes to the reliability, verifiability of conclusions, reduces their partiality and subjectivity. The use of empirical and logical evidence of the truth of scientific and psychological knowledge gives them special weight. Methods of science provide greater reliability and evidence to the knowledge gained.
In scientific psychology, there are reliable and verifiable ways to measure mental phenomena. Obtaining in experiments and tests quantitative data on mental phenomena has become the most important methodological principle of scientific and psychological research.
In scientific psychology, methods of mathematical processing of empirical data are widely used, which ensures greater reliability of the conclusions of the study.
Scientific psychology is systematic. It seeks a systematic description of the whole world of the psychic phenomena of a person, his personality, or any sphere of his mental life. Therefore, psychology attaches great importance to the construction of theories and classifications of psychological phenomena.
Due to the generalization of knowledge obtained in scientific psychology, it is widely based on abstract concepts and general scientific categories, such as, for example, activity, individual, personality, communication, abilities, stress, etc. The most significant properties of objects and phenomena, general connections and relationships between them.
The system of methods and techniques with which the process of cognition in science is carried out is called the method.
Methods of psychological research - these are the techniques and tools that are used to obtain reliable information about mental phenomena. The specificity of the latter is that they are inaccessible to external perception. This creates serious difficulties in their study. Until the second half of the XIX century. psychology used the only method - self-observation, which did not allow to obtain an objective picture of the studied mental phenomena. Later, with the opening of the first psychological laboratories, technical instruments and devices began to be used, allowing the researcher to set up and conduct psychological experiments. Thanks to the application of the methods of natural and exact sciences, the obtained facts began to differ in reliability and objectivity. Modern psychology has many research methods. Consider the most important of them.
Observation is a fairly simple method of psychological research. It is based on the fact that mental phenomena are found in a person’s external behavior: in actions, in movement, in actions, in speech, in facial expressions, in gestures, etc. By perceiving and fixing them, the psychologist has the opportunity to make assumptions about those lying in them basis of mental phenomena: features of attention, emotional state, character traits, etc.
The main disadvantage of this method is the very low reliability of the results. Therefore, it only allows us to formulate preliminary hypotheses that require careful verification using other research methods. Nevertheless, it is perhaps the most common in real research practice. Observation has several options. External observation is a way of collecting data on the psychology and behavior of a person by directly observing him from the outside. Internal observation, or self-observation, used when the psychologist fixes the mental processes taking place in his mind.
A survey is a method by which a person answers a series of questions asked to him. The survey is oral and written. A written survey can be conducted with a large number of people. The most common form is the questionnaire. A free survey is a type of oral or written survey when the list of asked questions and possible answers is not limited to a certain framework. This method is similar to a conversation in which you can change the research tactics, the content of asked questions, and receive non-standard answers to them quite flexibly. Any survey forms are not without the same drawbacks as observation methods.
Using tests allows you to get an accurate quantitative and qualitative assessment of the psychological characteristics of a person. Most tests are standardized and have the required standards. This makes it possible to assess the level of formation in a person of the corresponding mental functions, that is, to make a psychological diagnosis. There are three types of tests: questionnaire tests, task tests, and projective tests. The test questionnaire represents a system of pre-thought out questions, by the answers to which you can judge the psychological qualities of the subjects. The test task is aimed at assessing human actions. It proposes a series of special tasks, based on the results of which they judge the presence or absence and degree of development of the studied qualities in a person. When using these tests, the subject can knowingly influence the results, distort or embellish them. Therefore, to obtain more objective information about the psychological and behavioral characteristics of people, projective tests are used. They are based on the projection method, when a person, answering questions posed in a certain way or completing tasks, reflects in his answers his hidden personality traits.
Tests are widely used in practice for pedagogical diagnostics, professional selection and for solving other problems.
In modern psychology, there are hundreds of diverse tests, the use of which requires good theoretical and special training.
An experiment (from the Latin. Experimentum - test, experience) is a method of cognition, by which, under controlled and controlled conditions, the phenomena of reality are investigated. The experiment is carried out on the basis of a theory that determines the formulation of problems and the interpretation of its results. The experiment is the main method in science in general and in the psychology of business relations in particular.
The main goal of scientific psychology is the search for new psychological knowledge about the inner world of people. Scientific psychology is based on empirical scientific facts, that is, facts obtained experimentally. This distinguishes psychology as a science from the philosophical knowledge of man with the help of reasoning and logical conclusions. In addition to those indicated in scientific psychology, methods of mathematical processing of empirical data are also widely used, which ensures greater reliability of the conclusions of the study.
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