Social Psychology as a science desciple by itself – complete relationships
The conception of Psychology
According to Richard Growth (2010): he defines psychology as a science of mind and behavior where psychology comes from two Greek words, psych means mind, soul or spirit and logos means knowledge or study. Therefore, psychology is a science of behavior and mind embracing all aspect of conscious and unconscious experience as well as thoughts.
It is an academic discipline and a social science which seek to understand individual and group by establishing general principles and researching specific cases. Psychologists explore behavior and mental process including perception, cognition, attention and emotions.
According to American sociological association, they define social psychology as the study of how people are shaped and affected by their social environment. It includes evaluation of the society, it is including analyzing pattern of social interaction, relationship with others and culture. Myers, (1986) define social psychology as scientific study of how people think about influence and related to one another.
Brief Talk of Anthropology – Social Psychology as a science
Anthropology is the study of various aspects of human within past and present society. Social anthropology and cultural anthropology study the norms and values of the society. Linguistic anthropology studies how language affect social life, biological or physical anthropology studies the biological development of humans.
Science comes from Latin word scientia, which means knowledge. It is a systematic enterprise that builds and organizes knowledge in form of testable explanation and prediction about the universe.
Contemporary science is subdivided into the natural science which studies the material world and the social sciences which study people and societies and the formal science like mathematics. The formal science often distinguished from the empirical science as the former does not depend on empirical observation. The discipline which uses science like engineering and medicine may also be considered as applied science.
The following are the reasons to why social psychology is a science like other sciences. The argument below gives evidence and examples from different authors, who support the idea that, social psychology is a science.
The science in deep touch – Social Psychology as a science
Empiricism; this approach states that only the knowledge can be obtained through experiences of senses such as touching, smelling, sight, tasting and hearing. Empirical approach focuses on collection of data through direct observation and experiment.
“Social psychology is a science as it committed to seek for answers by means of science of controlled observation and possible experiments”(Asch and Koch, 1959). And these authors have given example of their experiment known as Asch`s experiment on primacy- recency and this experiment was about the effects of peoples effect on other individual behaviors.
Therefore it viewed that all knowledge is based on or gained through experience quickly become science and greatly influenced the development of physics, chemistry, and other scientific disciplines.
Hypothesis testing; this is the tentative statements from observation made, or statements made from the theories before the investigation to predict the outcome. For example the failure of students is caused by their laziness. Therefore after the investigation, the hypothesis made can bring positive or negative relationship between the variables.
Social psychology is a science – Baron, 1997
“Social psychology is a science as it studies bases in hypothesis testing”. (Baron, 1997). Therefore, the author has supported the argument that forming of hypothesis is the character of science as social psychology does, and come to prove that social psychology is the science.
Systematic; this means that in scientific approaches there should be a definite set of procedures and steps which must be followed for a research process. Social psychology is said to be a science because it bases on systematic techniques for data collection.
“Social psychology contribute to the inquiry in other social sciences, namely in the development and refinement of techniques for collecting data systematically”. (Riecken, 1965). This supportive argument proves that social psychology is conducted in a systematic manner which is one of the features of science.
Replication; this refer to whether the particular findings can be repeated with the same or different occasions to know if the outcomes are similar. If we obtain the same outcomes over and over again under the same procedures, we can be sure of the accuracy of the outcomes and hence can be used up to build knowledge.
In social psychology, replicability is done so as to verify its outcomes and findings. “Reproducibility of findings is a cornerstone of scientific findings, and that we ensure that we are on solid footing when translating those findings into applications such as new technologies”. (Nosek, 2014).
Objectivity, according to Nugent, (2013). Objectivity means the standard of a research study such that its hypothesis, choices of variables, methods of control and experiments are lacking bias as much as it possible. Objectivity is a feature of science, and if anything is objective it’s not confronted with personal feelings and experiences of the researchers.
The relationship reveals
The following are relationship between social psychology and other disciplines such as psychology, sociology and anthropology.
Beginning with social psychology and psychology: Psychology deals with the behavior pattern of an individual in relation to the environment which is physical as well as socially. The individual mind grows and develops through interaction with the society. Psychology and social psychology relates in the sense that some principles of psychology can be applied in social psychology, such as personality of an individual develops through social interaction with people around them as well as environment.
Also they differ in the manner that psychology is primarily concerned with the experience and behavior of an individual while social psychology on the other hand is concerned with roles that an individual plays in the society, on how we think about influence and relationship.
Social psychology and sociology. Social psychology looks at behavior of an individual in social context that is how individual is shaped and affected by the environment and how related to one another. And sociology looks on how groups behave and look at the actions of the group rather than individual psychology of people who are comprised in the group. Sociology and social psychology relates in the sense that both looks on social groups, especially human groups, their organization, development and human behavior.
Social psychology and Sociology differences
Also social psychology and sociology differ in some context like sociology studies the society at whole or as a group as definition by Palispis (2007) sociology is the scientific study of patterns of human interaction that deals with the study of group life, while social psychology studies individual behavior of man as social being. Thus sociology deals with social being. Thus it deals with social processes like interaction, relationship with others and culture, while social psychology deal with mental process of an individual.
Social psychology and anthropology. Anthropology is the study of people throughout the world, their evolutionary history, how they behave, adapt to different environments, communicate and socialize with one another. The study of anthropology is concerned both with the biological features that make us human such as physiology.
And with social aspects such as language family and religion. Example Social and cultural anthropology, however, is concerned with social relations in the here and now. The sense that it deals with how people behave their psychology community and adaptation makes it similarly to social psychology since social psychology also deals with people psychology relationship adaptation and communication.
Nafsa descriptions on anthropology
Also these fields differ where anthropology goes deep in dealing with human history and fossils. Examples from Nafsa, (2017) Primatologists carry out non-human primate studies. This is usually done in a natural setting among wild apes, monkeys, and related animals.
They are principally interested in learning about the capabilities and behavior patterns of primatesour closest living relatives. It is likely that the great apes in particular can give us important clues to understanding the lives of our earliest human ancestors over two million years ago.
And Paleoanthropologists recover the fossil record of early humans and their primate ancestors in order to understand the path of our evolution. Social psychologists deals with the way human is living in his society at the same time or at the spot and how he relate with other social members rather than his history and fossils.
The field of social psychology plays a very important role in the community since it helps people of different characters to communicate harmoniously and live in a very controllable manner. It thus shapes people to behave in an acceptable way while they are with others or by imagining the presence of others.