Psychology is a huge topic and conveying the depth and breadth of the subject can be difficult. As a result, a number of different fields of psychology have emerged to deal with specific subtopics within the study of the mind, brain and behavior.
Most general and introductory psychology courses cover many of these fields of psychology. As you delve deeper into the subject, you’ll soon find courses offered in each individual area. Each field of psychology represents a specific area of study focused on a particular topic. Oftentimes, psychologists specialize in one of these areas as a career.
The following are just some of the major fields of psychology. For many of these specialty areas, additional graduate study in that particular field is required.
- Abnormal psychology is a field of psychology that deals with psychopathology and abnormal behavior. Clinical psychologists, psychotherapists, and counselors typically work in this field. Mental health professionals help assess, diagnose, and treat a wide variety of mental disorders including anxiety and depression.
- This area of psychology is focused on how the brain, neurons, and nervous system influence thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. This field draws on many different disciplines including basic psychology, experimental psychology, biology, physiology, cognitive psychology, and neuroscience. People who work in this field often study how brain injuries and brain diseases impact human behavior.
- Clinical psychology is the branch of psychology concerned with the assessment and treatment of mental illness, abnormal behavior, and psychiatric problems.
- This area of psychology is centered on the science of how people think, learn, and remember. Psychologists who work in this field often study things such as perception, language, learning, memory, attention, decision-making, and problem-solving.
- This field of psychology is centered on the study of animal behavior. This area has its roots in the work of researchers such as Charles Darwin and Georges Romanes and has grown into a highly multidisciplinary subject. Psychologists often contribute to this field, as do biologists, anthropologists, ecologists, geneticists and many others.
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