Psychology Optional Syllabus: Paper-1

Foundations of Psychology

1. Introduction:

  • Definition of Psychology;
  • Historical antecedents of Psychology and trends in the 21st century;
  • Psychology and scientific methods;
  • Psychology in relation to other social sciences and natural sciences;
  • Application of Psychology to societal problems.

2. Methods of Psychology:

  • Types of researchDescriptiveevaluativediagnostic and prognostic;
  • Methods of Research: Survey, observation, case-study and experiments;
  • Characteristics of experimental design and non-experimental design, Quasi-experimental designs; Focussed group discussions, brain storming, grounded theory approach.

3. Research Methods:

  • Major steps in Psychological research (problem statement, hypothesis formulation, research designs, sampling, tools of data collection, analysis and interpretation and report writing)
  • Fundamental versus applied research;
  • Methods of data collection (interview, observation, questionnaire);
  • Research designs (ex-post facto and experimental);
  • Application of statistical technique (t – test, two way ANOVA correlation, regression and factor analysis);
  • Item response theory.

4. Development of Human Behaviour:

  • Growth and development; Principles of development,
  • Role of genetic and environmental factors in determining human behaviour;
  • Influence of cultural factors in socialization;
  • Life span development – Characteristics, development tasks, promoting psychological well-being across major stages of the life span.

5. Sensation, Attention, and Perception:

  • Sensation: concepts of threshold, absolute and difference thresholds, signal-detection and vigilance;
  • Factors influencing attention including set and characteristics of stimulus;
  • Definition and concept of perception, biological factors in perception;
  • Perceptual organization-influence of past experiences, perceptual defence-factors influencing space and depth perception, size estimation and perceptual readiness;
  • The plasticity of perception;
  • Extrasensory perception;
  • Culture and perception,
  • Subliminal perception.

6. Learning:

  • Concept and theories of learning (Behaviourists, Gestaltalist and Information processing models);
  • The Processes of extinction, discrimination and generalization;
  • Programmed learning, probability learning, self-instructional learning, concepts;
  • Types and the schedules of reinforcement, escape, avoidance and punishment, modeling and social learning.

7. Memory:

  • Encoding and remembering;
  • Short term memory, Long term memory, Sensory memory, Iconic memory, Echoic memory:
  • The Multistore model, levels of processing; Organization and Mnemonic techniques to improve memory;
  • Theories of forgetting: decay, interference and retrieval failure: Metamemory;
  • Amnesia: Anterograde and retrograde.

8. Thinking and Problem Solving:

  • Piaget’s theory of cognitive development;
  • Concept formation processes; Information processing, Reasoning and problem solving, Facilitating and hindering factors in problem solving,
  • Methods of problem solving: Creative thinking and fostering creativity; Factors influencing decision making and judgment;
  • Recent trends.

9. Motivation and Emotion:

  • Psychological and physiological basis of motivation and emotion;
  • Measurement of motivation and emotion;
  • Effects of motivation and emotion on behaviour; Extrinsic and intrinsic motivation;
  • Factors influencing intrinsic motivation;
  • Emotional competence and the related issues.

10. Intelligence and Aptitude:

  • Concept of intelligence and aptitude,
  • Nature and theories of intelligence – Spearman, Thurstone, Gullford Vernon, Sternberg and J.P; Das;
  • Emotional Intelligence, Social intelligence, measurement of intelligence and aptitudes,
  • concept of IQ, deviation IQ, constancy of IQ; Measurement of multiple intelligence;
  • Fluid intelligence and crystallized intelligence.

11. Personality:

  • Definition and concept of personality;
  • Theories of personality (psychoanalytical, sociocultural, interpersonal, developmental, humanistic, behaviouristic, trait and type approaches);
  • Measurement of personality (projective tests, pencil-paper test);
  • The Indian approach to personality;
  • Training for personality development;
  • Latest approaches like big 5 factor theory;
  • The notion of self in different traditions.

12. Attitudes, Values, and Interests:

  • Definition of attitudes, values and interests;
  • Components of attitudes; Formation and maintenance of attitudes;
  • Measurement of attitudes, values and interests;
  • Theories of attitude change; Strategies for fostering values;
  • Formation of stereotypes and prejudices; Changing others behaviour;
  • Theories of attribution;
  • Recent trends.

13. Language and Communication:

  • Human language – Properties, structure and linguistic hierarchy, Language acquisition- predisposition, critical period hypothesis;
  • Theories of language development – Skinner and Chomsky; Process and types of communication – effective communication training.

14. Issues and Perspectives in Modern Contemporary Psychology:

  • Computer application in the psychological laboratory and psychological testing;
  • Artificial intelligence; Psychocybernetics;
  • Study of consciousness-sleep-wake schedules; dreams, stimulus deprivation, meditation, hypnotic/drug induced states;
  • Extrasensory perception; Intersensory perception Simulation studies.

Psychology Optional Syllabus: Paper-2

Psychology: Issues and Applications

1. Psychological Measurement of Individual Differences:

  • The nature of individual differences;
  • Characteristics and construction of standardized psychological tests;
  • Types of psychological tests;
  • Use, misuse and limitation of psychological tests;
  • Ethical issues in the use of psychological tests.

2. Psychological well being and Mental Disorders:

  • Concept of health-ill health;
  • Positive health, well being;
  • Causal factors in mental disorders (Anxiety disorders, mood disorders, schizophrenia and delusional disorders;
  • personality disorders, substance abuse disorders);
  • Factors influencing positive health, well being, life style and quality of life;
  • Happiness disposition.

3. Therapeutic Approaches:

  • Psychodynamic therapies;
  • Behaviour therapies;
  • Client centered therapy;
  • Cognitive therapies;
  • Indigenous therapies (Yoga, Meditation);
  • Bio-feedback therapy;
  • Prevention and rehabilitation of the mentally ill;
  • Fostering mental health.

4. Work Psychology and Organisational Behaviour:

  • Personnel selection and training; Use of psychological tests in the industry;
  • Training and human resource development;
  • Theories of work motivation – Herzberg, Maslow, Adam Equity theory, Porter and Lawler, Vroom;
  • Leadership and participatory management;
  • Advertising and marketing;
  • Stress and its management;
  • Ergonomics; consumer psychology;
  • Managerial effectiveness;
  • Transformational leadership;
  • Sensitivity training;
  • Power and politics in organizations.

5. Application of Psychology to Educational Field:

  • Psychological principles underlying effective teaching-learning process;
  • Learning styles; Gifted, retarded, learning disabled and their training;
  • Training for improving memory and better academic achievement;
  • Personality development and value education, Educational, vocational guidance and career counseling;
  • Use of psychological tests in educational institutions;
  • Effective strategies in guidance programmes.

6. Community Psychology:

  • Definition and concept of community psychology;
  • Use of small groups in social action; Arousing community consciousness and action for handling social problems;
  • Group decision making and leadership for social change; Effective strategies for social change.

7. Rehabilitation Psychology:

  • Primary, secondary and tertiary prevention programmes-role of psychologists;
  • Organising of services for rehabilitation of physically, mentally and socially challenged persons including old persons, Rehabilitation of persons suffering from substance abuse, juvenile delinquency, criminal behaviour;
  • Rehabilitation of victims of violence, Rehabilitation of HIV/AIDS victims, the role of social agencies.

8. Application of Psychology to disadvantaged groups:

  • The concepts of disadvantaged, deprivation; Social, physical, cultural and economic consequences of disadvantaged and deprived groups;
  • Educating and motivating the disadvantaged towards development; Relative and prolonged deprivation.

9. Psychological problems of social integration:

  • The concept of social integration;
  • The problem of caste, class, religion and language conflicts and prejudice;
  • Nature and manifestation of prejudice between the in-group and out-group;
  • Causal factors of social conflicts and prejudices;
  • Psychological strategies for handling the conflicts and prejudices;
  • Measures to achieve social integration.

10. Application of Psychology in Information Technology and Mass Media:

  • The present scenario of information technology and the mass media boom and the role of psychologists;
  • Selection and training of psychology professionals to work in the field of IT and mass media;
  • Distance learning through IT and mass media;
  • Entrepreneurship through e-commerce;
  • Multilevel marketing; Impact of TV and fostering value through IT and mass media;
  • Psychological consequences of recent developments in Information Technology.

11. Psychology and Economic development:

  • Achievement motivation and economic development;
  • Characteristics of entrepreneurial behaviour;
  • Motivating and training people for entrepreneurship and economic development;
  • Consumer rights and consumer awareness,
  • Government policies for promotion of entrepreneurship among youth including women entrepreneurs.

12. Application of psychology to environment and related fields:

  • Environmental psychology-effects of noise, pollution and crowding;
  • Population psychology: psychological consequences of population explosion and high population density;
  • Motivating for small family norm;
  • Impact of rapid scientific and technological growth on degradation of environment.

13. Application of psychology in other fields:

  • Military Psychology Devising psychological tests for defence personnel for use in selection, Training, counseling; training psychologists to work with defence personnel in promoting positive health; Human engineering in defence.
  • Sports Psychology Psychological interventions in improving performance of athletes and sports. Persons participating in Individual and Team Games.
  • Media influences on pro and antisocial behaviour.
  • Psychology of terrorism.

14. Psychology of Gender:

  • Issues of discrimination,
  • Management of diversity;
  • Glass ceiling effect,
  • Self fulfilling prophesy,
  • Women and Indian society

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