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UPSC - Syllabus - Psychology

Examination Syllabus - Subject : Psychology

  1. Introduction to psychology :
    Concept and definition of psychology. Nature and Scope. Branches of psychology. Application of psychology to soceity and social problems.

  2. Methods in Psychology :
    Characteristics of psychological studies, Observation. Survey method, Clinical and case study method. Experimental method. Application of the method.

  3. Quantitive Analysis :
    Measures of central tendency and dispersion. Correlation. Levels of measurement. Reliability and validity. Application in test construction.

  4. Physiological Psychology :
    Structure of neuron, nerve impulses, synapse and neurotransmitters. Central and peripheral nervous system-structure and neural control of behaviour. Hemispheric specialisation. Endocrine system and hormonal control of behaviour. Application of hemispheric knowledge to diagnostic purposes.

  5. Development of human behaviour :
    Individual Differences : Heredity and environment. Life span developent. Role of early experience and mastering of developmental tasks. Sensitive or critical periods of development in human life cycle and its application.

  6. Perception :
    Preceptual processes. Perceputal organsiation. Perception of form, colour, depth and time. Perceptual readiness and constancy. Role of motivation, social and cultural factors in perception. Application of knowledge of perception to skill development (e.g. for certain jobs like that of driving, airline pilots etc.)

  7. Learning :
    Classical conditioning and operant conditioning. Modeling and observational learning. Transfer of training. Learing and motivation. Application of the above to the improvement of academic performance in education.

  8. Memory :
    Physiological basis of memory. Memory and forgetting. Measurement of memory (Recall, Recognition, Relearning). Short term and long term memory. Theories of forgetting (Decay and Interference theories and Repressive forgetting). Application of Mnemonic devices etc, to improving memory.

  9. Cognition and Language :
    Concept of formation. Nature and development of thinking. Language and thought and acquisition of language. Problem solving. Creative thinking and its applications.

  10. Intelligence and Aptitude :
    Definition and concept. Theories and models of Intelligence. Measurement of intelligence and aptitude. Exceptional intelligence. Mental retardation. Concepts of multiple, emotional and artificial intelligence and their application.

  11. Motivation and Emotion :
    Definition and concept of instinct, needs, drives and motives. Theories of motivation and their application (drive reduction theory, Maslow's motivational hierarchy). Social motivation: Achievement, power, affiliation motives and influence of early experiences. Physiological basis of emotion. Theories of emotion (James-Lange and Cannon-Brad theories, cognitive physiological theory).

  12. Personality :
    Concepts and Definition of personality. Sutdy of personality (Trait, type and eclectic approaches) Development of personality (Freud, Erikson, Biological and socio-cultural determinants). Measurement of Personality (Projective tests, pencil-paper tests). Application of personality profiles in fitting a person to a job.

  13. Adjustment and Stress :
    Concept and definition. Factors affecting adjustment (frustration and conflict). Sources of stress and reactions to stress. Coping with stress. Application of stress management techniques.

  14. Social Behaviour :
    Socio-cultural factors and behaviour. Development of attitudes, stereotypes and prejudice, Measurement of Attidutes (Thurstone, Likert attitude scale and Bogardus Social Distance scale). Strategies for reducing prejudice and changing atitude. Person perception, implicit personality theory and integrating impressions. Application of person perception to impression management.

  15. Application of Psychology :
    Health and mental health (yoga, meditation and relaxation therapies). Education (Programmed learning,. self instructional learning and learning styles). Community (self help through group cohesiveness and leadership). Industry (Assessment centre approach in selection, recruitment and training). Environment (man-nature interaction, personal space concept, pollution reduction) Information technology (Application to commercial, educational and health areas).


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