Throughout the course, you have been exposed to theories in cognitive psychology and have been asked to use those theories to solve problems and evaluate human cognition. Based on what you have learned, discuss the role you think cognitive psychology plays in understanding human behavior and interactions. How has this field advanced our understanding of human cognition and behavior? How has cognitive psychology helped us to create socially responsible strategies for improving cognition? What directions do you think the field will take next, and how will that research be important in solving contemporary problems or real-world issues?
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Everything that we do in a day requires us to use our cognitive functions. We are then able to understand or try to understand human behavior and interactions. This is where cognitive psychology comes into play. Cognitive psychology is focused on the higher mental processes that we use, along with focusing on the instincts and other unconscious forces that help us to make decisions (APA, 2009). We use these processes to communicate, consciously to make decisions and unconsciously to make decisions, to make connections with others around us and to survive. The role cognitive psychology plays is vital to human survival. Without cognitive psychology, we would not have been able to develop treatments for mental health disorders such as Alzheimerâ€™s disease and ADHD or brain injuries. Cognitive psychology has allowed us to understand many aspects of how humans think and behave and how negative behaviors can be corrected.
The field of cognitive psychology has advanced in many ways from helping to develop treatment plans for mental health disorders to helping with advancements in treating brain injuries. Cognitive psychology has helped us better understand how the human brain works after a traumatic event or what brings serial killers to do what they do. Despite the advancements, there is room for much more to be developed and understood about cognition and human behavior within this field.
Cognitive psychology has helped to improve policies in the professional fields such as seeing those of us with mental health issues as humans and no longer things that should be locked up and thrown away. Cognitive psychology has helped to create strategies for teaching many of us coping skills to deal with mental health issues such as memory loss, depression, anxiety and stress. This field has helped to develop many therapeutic techniques that companies and individuals can use no longer to just get through life but to live it to the fullest.
I think this field will continue to advance with its treatment methods and resources for people of all backgrounds. Unfortunately, mental health issues seem to be abundant but I believe that this field will continue to make advancements and hopefully one day to find ways to prevent mental health issues. I would be wonderful if technology and cognitive psychology could advance enough so we can eliminate many of the ailments of life like depression, anxiety, ADHD and dementia.
APA. (2009). APA college dictionary of psychology. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
As we learned early on in this course, cognitive psychology encompasses everything from our perception of the world around us by utilizing our senses, to how we interpret and process those particular stimuli. Cognitive psychology also encompasses how our memory operates and how we process language. Cognitive psychology plays a huge role in understanding human behaviors and cognition. In everyday life, we use these cognitive processes to communicate with our peers and form relationships and understand one another. In professional fields, researchers are using neuroimaging studies to see different parts of the brain that are active or nonactive in patients with diseases such as Alzheimerâ€™s or Traumatic Brain Injuries. Educators and child psychology professionals can use resources learned from cognitive behaviors to help create programs to help children with ADHD, Autism, or even language/learning disorders. These are all great advances in this field that help us understand human behaviors and cognition. I foresee that the advancements in cognitive psychology will continue to increase as we continue to improve technology.
Socially responsible strategies are tools that are being utilized more and more by big corporations to better provide quality care to the public, to create a better working environment for their employees, to conduct business ethically, and to improve the environment and relations with the community. With that in mind, these same socially responsible strategies can be used to improve cognition. In therapeutic or medical professions, these tools can be used to help create programs for patients that suffer anxiety or have learning/behavioral disabilities. In classrooms, educators can use these tools to teach children to be more self-aware, to have an open and inviting classroom for all students to learn equally. These strategies can help children with dyslexia or those that speak more than one language feel less anxiety and that they are just as important as the other students in the class.
As mentioned earlier, I think we are on the right path of creating programs and resources for everyday people. We are in a society with more and more people being diagnosed with mental health issues and/or learning/behavioral disabilities. I think this is partly due to the advancements in research and technology to help give these diagnoses. The field of cognitive psychology will continue to grow as we continue to advance in technology. We have already seen the capabilities of neuroimaging. I think it will continue to see advancements, which will help us in pinpointing exact areas of the brain to focus on. I also believe we are on the right track of being able to test what particular medications will work for certain people based on DNA, bloodwork, and neuroimaging. We are already seeing this with children with ADHD. Apparently, there are tests that can be done to see if certain medications will help more than others. This could help the trial and error process of figuring out medications for children to see how they react on medications, then having to switch. I look forward to seeing what the future holds.