Skip to comments.Why psychology isn't science
Posted on 07/13/2012 1:03:03 PM PDT by Sir Napsalot
Psychologist Timothy D. Wilson, a professor at the University of Virginia, expressed resentment in his Times Op-Ed article on Thursday over the fact that most scientists don't consider his field a real science. He casts scientists as condescending bullies:
"Once, during a meeting at my university, a biologist mentioned that he was the only faculty member present from a science department. When I corrected him, noting that I was from the Department of Psychology, he waved his hand dismissively, as if I were a Little Leaguer telling a member of the New York Yankees that I too played baseball.
"There has long been snobbery in the sciences, with the 'hard' ones (physics, chemistry, biology) considering themselves to be more legitimate than the 'soft' ones (psychology, sociology)."
The dismissive attitude scientists have toward psychologists isn't rooted in snobbery; it's rooted in intellectual frustration. It's rooted in the failure of psychologists to acknowledge that they don't have the same claim on secular truth that the hard sciences do. It's rooted in the tired exasperation that scientists feel when non-scientists try to pretend they are scientists.
That's right. Psychology isn't science.
(Excerpt) Read more at latimes.com ...
Psychiatry is a science. Psychology is a skill.
Being a skill, there is a lot of room for incompetent morons however, with the right person, a talented psychologist can be a Godsend.
It's a classic. You should google/you tube it. If you thought the Hollywood elites were egomaniacs....Cruise takes the game to a whole new level. He's a total wack job. In fact, he's gone so psychotic, we have taken films he has been in off our family blacklist.
He should be diagnosed as crazy and institutionalized. Ideological pun fully intended here.
“No one on the planet can predict how any one individual is going to react to any given stressful situation.”
lol...never been married, huh?
I vote for the soup.
In case you work for the same company I do...Get back to work! :o)
>>Dr. Sheldon Cooper is definitely a scientist. He would have written an even more scathing paper but would approve the gist of this article.<<
The beautiful irony is he operates in a 100% theoretical branch...
Psychologists aren't claiming to be pedestrian crosswalks; they are, however, claiming to be scientists.
I am - before any female undergarments get uncomfortable accumulations - NOT against psychology or psychiatry.
They do a lot of good for a lot of people - and I am all for rigorously studying of human consciousness in both normal and abnormal states!
But there is more to science than just rigorous study. You can't just add “ology” to the end of something and have it be science.
Ok - back to work!!!
Psychology will only become “real” science when we can digitize the entire working human brain and analyse it like we would a computer in a car.
Politicizing psychology with homosexuality undermines the real good that comes from the discipline. Ask any number of vets who have been successfully been treated for PTSD.
Married 27 years....this time. :-)
Ummm, do I get to vote on that one?
[ Why psychology isn’t science ]
Because modern psychology is just somebodys opinion...
Those opinions are not facts..
The Behaviorist school at least tries to quantify behavior in statistical terms, thereby rendering "normal" as an objective value. The danger there is that in doing so, they reduce their patients to little more than statistical abstractions -- dehumanized standard deviations or analyses of variance.
So while psychology isn't the "hard" science that math is, it can be described scientifically, if that evolves to the patient's benefit. However, I doubt that it does.
First, One of my degrees is in psychology. The first week of every psychology class they would include an introductory chapter stating how psychology is a science.
If someone tells me they are telling the truth, I generally believe them. But if they keep repeating it, I often wonder if they are trying to convince me or themselves. You get my drift, I never considered psychology a science.
The reason I never considered psychology a science was due to the biased variable of the critical mind and the influence of past perceptions on any measured variable. It was impossible to stimulate consciousness without stimulating one of the senses and thus also the critical mind. Thus, psychological studies were correlations at best.
Then I discovered a new technique that stimulated stored memories and directly generates a measurable response in the subject without stimulating any of the five senses. I just demonstrated it at a conference in Chicago this past weekend for over a hundred attendees.
I had volunteers from the group come down and I would touch the stored memories in the fields surrounding their physical bodies and move their physical bodies in various directions. I did this while standing 10-15 feet from the subject, their eyes were closed, I said nothing and did not touch their physical body in any way. Using this, I told them of detail events in their lives back to conception and removed the related emotional trauma (if any) for them. The subject did not speak at all prior to me stating my findings. It is so easy. I can read stored memories of an individual’s life experiences almost the way x-rays do bones. They are real physical tangible objects to me. I do not use power of suggestion in any way. It’s easy to explain the neuroscience of how I am doing this. Eric Kandel and Joe Ledoux are missing the boat in their memory research at Columbia and NYU!
When this scientific methodology is utilized, psychology is a science. The Duke University Medical School IRB has already approved the research project where I demonstrate how this works. It is measurable, repeatable, eliminated variable bias, is a direct stimulus response relationship, and works in a double blind. In my initial trial I hit 17 of 20 tests right on and only missed the three as the screens creating the blind were located too close together and the subject’s memory field overlap was too great. i.e. no matter which screen blind the subject was behind the memory field extended in front of both of them. They need to be at least 20 feet apart to create a separation.
In all fairness, sciences and “social studies”, both exist in a ratio of ‘science’ to ‘study’, which varies between disciplines.
That is, ‘science’ is a very rigorous set of reproducible procedures that should produce a nearly identical outcome each time they are performed.
However, interpolation or extrapolation of scientific outcomes is a study.
A chess analogy is a good one. If you successfully follow the rules and play a game of chess, all you have succeeded in doing is playing a game of chess. If you do not follow the rules, you have not played a game of chess, no matter what it looks like. And even if you have won a game of chess it changes nothing. You cannot interpolate or extrapolate based on what you have done, such as you are a better chess player, beyond that particular game.
In the case of psychology, there is deductive psychology, which is a study, and clinical psychology, which is much more scientific.
Compare that with say, astrophysics, so much of which is theoretical and unique that while they can assert some things as scientific facts, much of what they do is observational and speculative, that is, a study. And since the Hubble telescope, they have been severely humbled, and repeatedly, by what they do not know.
It if weren’t for psychology, those scientists wouldn’t know what they were trying to scientifically fix.
You are describing biochemistry which can have a psychologically measurable result. Even so, most of the drugs perform little better than placebos in the scientific studies.
Patsy Cline OWNS this song - but amazingly enough it was written by Willie Nelson! Now THAT is CRAZY!!!!