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Psychology is the scientific study of human behavior and mental processes. Until about 100 years ago, it was a branch of philosophy. Depending on the time period, psychology has been used as the term to describe the study of the mind, brain, behavior, consciousness, and soul. Contemporary psychology focuses on topics such as the biological bases of behavior, sensation, perception, memory, cognition, emotion, motivation, learning, language, dreaming, social interaction, prejudice, development, aging, intelligence, personality, and stress.

Psychology is a broad field. Abnormal psychology observes maladaptive behavior patterns and psychopathology. Clinical psychology applies therapeutic methods to the treatment of individuals experiencing problems in life. Comparative psychology studies similarities and differences in behavior of various animal species. Developmental psychology measures the stability and change of characteristics, such as intelligence or social skills, over the life span. Educational psychology is concerned with improving teaching methods and learning in the classroom. Industrial or organizational psychology studies work and working environments, then applies findings to improve job satisfaction and productivity. Personality psychologists examine individual differences across a number of personal attributes, such as shyness and conscientiousness. Physiological psychologists investigate biological bases of behavior, focusing on the nervous system. Social psychology interprets behaviors of individuals in groups and how people affect one another's behavior. Positive psychologists evaluate factors that contribute to human happiness in order to improve the mental well-being of patients.

The thread that unifies the diverse, multi-disciplinary areas of psychological science is the notion that it can be studied in a systemic, clinical way.

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Psychology Resources

Gale provides resources that support research with collections from databases, primary source archives, and eBooks.


Gale databases include psychology books, up-to date newspapers, peer-reviewed journal articles, primary source documents, and multimedia like images and videos, that support research. Easy-to-use citations allow students to choose by academic style, such as APA.

Primary Source Archives

Gale Primary Sources contains full-text archives and psychology collections that provide firsthand content, including historical documents, archives, journals, and news articles that examine and analyze psychology.

Gale eBooks

Gale offers a variety of eBooks covering a wide range of subject areas, including research methods, perspectives, and more. Users can add Gale eBooks to a customized collection and cross-search to pinpoint relevant content. Workflow tools help users easily share, save, and download content.

  • Encyclopedia of Applied Psychology, 1st Edition

    Encyclopedia of Applied Psychology, 1st Edition

    Elsevier Inc.  |   2014   |   ISBN-13: 9780080547749

    Encyclopedia of Applied Psychology encompasses applications of psychological knowledge and procedures in all areas of psychology. This compendium is a major source of information for professional practitioners, undergraduate students, graduate students, and anyone interested in applied psychology. In-depth, empirical study of topics including, but not limited to, aging (geropsychology), assessment, clinical, cognitive, community, counseling, educational, environmental, family, industrial or organizational, health, methodology, school, sports, and transportation psychology.

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  • A New Psychology Based on Community, Equality, and Care of the Earth: An Indigenous American Perspective, 1st Edition

    A New Psychology Based on Community, Equality, and Care of the Earth: An Indigenous American Perspective, 1st Edition

    Praeger  |   2020   |   ISBN-13: 9781440869266

    Psychology is a relatively new discipline with foundations formed narrowly and near-exclusively by white, European males. According to the author, a fellow of the American Psychological Association, those foundations, filled with implicit bias, are too narrow to best help diverse people and societies. A narrowly based perspective prevents out-of-the-box thinking, research, and treatment that could guide greater healing and avoidance of disorders. In this text, he explains the Native American perspective on psychology, detailing why it needs to be incorporated as a new model for social work, mental health, and related disciplines. As a Native American psychologist, he contrasts the original culture of psychology's creators—as it includes individualism, autonomy, independence, and hierarchal relationships—with that of Native Americans in the context of communalism, interdependence, earth-centeredness, and egalitarianism. As he explains, psychological happiness is redefined by the reality of our interdependence rather than materialism and individualism, and how we do things becomes as important as what we accomplish.

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