CBSE Study Material in Psychology For Class XII
Supplementary Reading Material In Psychology For Class XII : Board Examination 2011
UNIT 3 Page No.
3.1 Adaptation and Adjustments 3
3.2 Human Strengths and Virtues 4
5.1 Zen 8
5.2 Counselling 8
8.1 Media and Human Values 12
8.2 Human Rights 14
8.3 Citizenship 15
8.4 Promotion of Peace 15
Application of Psychology to following areas:
9.1 Sports 17
9.2 Education 21
9.3 Communication 25
9.4 Organization 26
3.1 Adaptation and Adjustment
We always face different kinds of challenges in our life. The difficult circumstances, problems and obstacles often block our path leading towards the chosen life goals. Fortunately we also have the capacity to face the challenges and overcome them, both by means of in-built tendencies as well as learned behaviours –which enable to adapt to diverse situations. The term adaptation refers to the process of change in organisms or species to accommodate a particular environment. We try to change ourselves according to the demands of the circumstances. For instance we put on warm clothes during winter and work hard when if the work demands. This enables our survival. Adaptation is crucial to the process of natural selection.
Ethologists, scientists who study the behaviours of animals in their natural habitats have documented two main patterns of adaptive behaviours. Some behaviours, known as “closed programs,” get transmitted from one generation to the next relatively unchanged. Other behaviours known as “open genetic programs” are susceptible to greater degree of environmental influence. Adaptation occurs in individual organisms as well as in species. Sensory adaptation consists of physiological changes that occur in response to the presence or cessation of stimuli. We also adapt to environmental and social circumstances.
In psychology, the behavioural process by which humans and other animals maintain a state of equilibrium among their various needs or between their needs and the obstacles of their environments is called adjustment. A sequence of adjustment begins when a need is felt and ends when it is satisfied. Hungry people, for example, are stimulated by their physiological state to seek food. When they eat, they reduce the stimulating condition that impelled them to activity, and they are thereby adjusted to this particular need.
In general, the adjustment process has four parts: (1) a need or motive in the form of a strong persistent stimulus, (2) the thwarting or non-fulfillment of this need, (3) varied activity, or exploratory behaviour accompanied by problem solving, and (4) some response that removes or at least reduces the initiating stimulus that brings satisfaction and completes the process of adjustment, at least temporarily.
It may be noted that adjustments also take place in social and cultural domains. Such adjustments are quite similar to the process of physiological adjustment. People strive to be comfortable in their surroundings and to have their psychological needs (such as love or affirmation) met through the social networks they inhabit. When needs arise, especially in new or changed surroundings, they impel interpersonal activity meant to satisfy those needs. In this way, people increase their familiarity and comfort with their environments, and they come to expect that their needs will be met in the future through their social networks. Ongoing difficulties in social and cultural adjustment may be accompanied by anxiety or depression.
3.2 Human Strengths and Virtues
In recent years psychologists have shown increasing interest in understanding what makes life good and meaningful. This development is termed as positive psychology. Positive psychology systematically investigates the positive aspects i.e. the strengths and virtues of human beings. They are central to the life sustaining processes of helping, altruism, cooperation, learning etc. A group of leading psychologists have tried to define the universal ‘human strengths’. The strengths and virtues enable individuals and communities to thrive. Positive psychologists seek “to find and nurture genius and talent,” and “to make normal life more fulfilling, not to cure mental illness.” Martin Seligman has provided leadership to the movement of positive psychology. The positive psychologists researched around 200 texts drawn from various traditions including gret thinkers and texts like Aristotle, Plato, Aquinas, St.Augustine, Old Testament, the Talmud, Confucius, Buddha, Lao-Tze, Bushido (the samurai code), the Koran, and the Upanishads. As a result they were able to identify a core set of human virtues shared by these traditions. These include Wisdom and Knowledge, Courage, Love and Humanity, Justice, Temperance, and Spirituality and transcendence. In addition they identified a range of ‘strengths’ – personal characteristics or behaviours by which these virtues can be attained. These 24 strengths are as follows:
Wisdom and Knowledge
1. Curiosity / Interest in the world: An openness to experience; flexibility about things that don’t fit your preconceptions.
2. Love of Learning: Taking pleasure in learning new things; taking every opportunity to expand your knowledge and expertise.
3. Judgment / Critical Thinking / Open-Mindedness: Thinking things through and examining them from all sides; not jumping to conclusions; being objective.
4. Ingenuity / Originality / Practical Intelligence : Finding new and practical ways of achieving results; creativity; ‘street wisdom’.
5. Social Intelligence / Personal Intelligence / Emotional Intelligence : Understanding your own and others’ motives and feelings; acting in socially effective ways.
6. Perspective: Able to adopt the ‘big picture’ so as to act wisely; good at problem-solving and giving advice.
7. Valour and Bravery: Willing to confront challenges and difficulty; prepared to adopt unpopular or dangerous positions.
8. Perseverance / Industry / Diligence: Finishing what you start; prepared to take on difficult projects; doing what you say you’ll do – and more.
9. Integrity / Genuineness / Honesty: Living in a genuine, authentic way; down to earth and without pretence.
Humanity and Love
10. Kindness and Generosity: Helping other people; putting others’ interests as highly as your own.
11. Loving and Allowing Oneself to be Lo
ved: Valuing and engendering close and intimate relations with others.
12. Citizenship / Duty / Teamwork / Loyalty: Working hard for the success of the group; valuing group goals and purposes; respecting authority.
13. Fairness and Equity: Avoiding any personal bias; being guided by principles concerning equality; tackling prejudice.
14. Leadership: Organizing activities well and seeing that they happen; maintaining good relations in and between groups.
15. Self-Control: Checking your own impulses when appropriate; repairing negative feelings; managing yourself.
16. Prudence / Discretion / Caution: Being careful; not saying things you might regret; resisting the impulse to act only for the short term.
17. Humility and Modesty: Not seeking the spotlight; letting your accomplishments speak for themselves; unpretentious.
18. Appreciation of Beauty and Excellence: Appreciating excellence in all domains; able to feel awe and wonder.
19. Gratitude: Not taking things for granted; expressing gratitude to others; appreciating life
20. Hope / Optimism / Future-Mindedness: Maintaining a positive stance towards the future; expecting the best; leading a goal-directed life.
21. Spirituality / Sense of Purpose / Faith / Religiousness: Strong and coherent set of beliefs about larger purpose or meaning; acting in accordance with these beliefs.
22. Forgiveness and Mercy: Forgiving those who hurt or offend you; able to transform how you feel; generosity of spirit.
23. Playfulness and Humor: Laughing and creating laughter; seeing the light side of life.
24. Zest / Passion / Enthusiasm: Throwing yourself, body and soul into activities; inspiring others.
It is though a virtuous life that one can attain lasting happiness and life a full life. The psychologists are trying to measure these strengths and virtues and examining the sources of their development. It has been found that hedonistic pursuit is not enough and one must try to have meaning in life.
A school of Mahayana Buddhism that asserts that enlightenment can be attained through meditation, self-contemplation, and intuition rather than through faith and devotion. It is practiced mainly in China, Japan, Korea, and Vietnam. It is also called Zen Buddhism.
Zen emphasizes dharma practice and experiential wisdom—particularly as realized in the form of meditation known as zazen—in the attainment of awakening. As such, it de-emphasizes both theoretical knowledge and the study of religious texts in favor of direct experiential realization.
According to Warner, Counselling is ‘a therapeutic and growth process through which individuals are helped to define goals , make decisions and solve problems related to the personal – social – educational and career concerns’. Counselling involves helping relationship, that includes someone seeking help and someone willing to give help, who is capable of or trained to help in a setting that permits help to be given and received.
The following elements about counseling are common to the major theoretical approaches to counseling:
1. Counselling involves responding to the feeling, thoughts, and actions of the clients
2. Counselling involves a basic acceptance of the clients’ perceptions and feelings without using any evaluative standards.
3. Confidentiality and privacy constitute essential ingredients in the counseling setting. Physical facilities that preserve this quality are important.
4. Counselling is voluntary. It takes place when the client approaches a counselor. A counselor never uses any kind of coercion for obtaining information.
5. Counselor and clients both transmit and receive verbal and non verbal messages during the process. Therefore awareness and sensitivity to the nature of the message is an important prerequisite for the counselor’s effectiveness.
Counselling is practiced extensively in schools. Many educators spend time with certain students either in groups or more often individually. The following suggests when these “get togethers” may qualify counseling.
How to decide if contact is counseling related
- Are you meeting more than once?
- Does the student asks for or seem to want the contact?
- Is the purpose of the meeting agreed on by both the educator and the student?
- Is there a noticeable progress toward this purpose?
- Does the educator frequently listen and encourage talking?
Thus, a counselor is most often interested in building an understanding of the clients problem by focusing on what understanding the client has of her / his problem and how s/he feels about it. The actual or objective facts of the problems are considered less important and it is more important to work on the feelings and their acknowledgement by the clients. The focus is more on the person and how s/he defines the problem.
Analyzing the above discussion we can say that in counseling
- two people are present
- leads `to action on the part of client
- counselor listens
- client can be trusted to find their own solutions
- personal growth of client usually occurs
- resolution of problems is an expectation.
STAGES OF COUNSELLING PROCESS
1. Getting started – it is decided as to the frequency with which the counselor and the client will meet, the times they will interact, when it is anticipated that the relation will end .
2.Introductory talk – it entails general conversation about their lives, then the counselor works towards specifics, it is quite likely that many people do not know what is troubling them until they begin to talk. Also the client gives personal details.
3. Identifying the issue – Different types of questions are asked by the counselor like, How do you feel about that?, What was it like? How are you feeling at the moment? What did you do then? What happened when you did that?
4. Coping with feelings – four emotions commonly suppressed or bottled up are; Anger, Grief, Fear, Embarrassment. These emotions are to be accepted and allowed to be expressed.
5. Identifying possible solutions – the counselor helps in dealing and coping with help of “ brainstorming “It helps generate as many solutions and come up with an obvious answer.
6. Agreeing on a plan – The goal is identified and also the steps which will lead towards it. A practical plan of action is thought of which is reasonable and achievable.
7. Implementing the plan – The client does it independently, with counselor’s support.
Thus we see that counseling is just a helping process by which the client comes with a plan of action with the help of a counselor. The success of counseling depends on certain characteristics of the counselor. Let us elaborate them.
Characteristics of Effective Helper
Page 192 to 193 of NCERT book in Psychology, Class XII.
Ethics of counselling
Page 193 of NCERT book on Psychology, Class XII.
8.1 Media and Human Values
In contemporary life media is playing a key role in regulating our lives. Media encompasses the whole body of broad based channels of communication in print or electronic form that reach a large public (e.g. radio, television, movies, magazines, newspapers, internet). The term was coined in the 1920’s with the advent of nationwide radio network, and circulation of newspapers and magazines. It is the media that
reaches a mass audience. Mass media can be used for various purposes such as –
1. Advocacy of both business and social concerns. This can include advertising, marketing & propaganda, public relations, and political communication.
- Enrichment and education.
- Entertainment- traditionally through performance of acting music and sports along with light reading. Since the 20th Century there are Video & Computer Games.
- Journalism, News etc.
- Public service announcement.
The use of mass media is becoming a very powerful tool for social change, education, promotion of business and attitude change. It is changing the ways people get motivated, experience emotions, enjoy life and participate in the social activities. The manipulation of large group of people through media outlets, for the benefit of a particular party or groups of people has become very common. Since media crosses the cultural boundaries there are diverse influences and outcomes which are perceived to be a threat to the native culture.
The influence of media on human values is all pervasive. Values refer to what is desirable and contributes to well being of the people. We often imbibe the values which are embedded in the messages and explicitly stated in the media. They are perceived as prevalent in the society and are forcefully projected by the media into our subconscious and we tend to internalize it. It can have both negative and positive effects. For example, the positive outlook toward protection of environment, anti crackers’ campaign and protection of animal rights have yielded positive effects. On the other hand, it might sometimes lead to undesirable changes in value patterns. Take for example the excessive focus on achieving a goal (at any cost) without any regard to the means to achieve them or depiction of violence. Media is working as a key to globalization and cultural change.
8.2 Human rights
Human Rights refer to the “basic rights and freedoms to which all humans are entitled because they are human beings. Examples of rights and freedoms which are often thought of as human rights include civil and political rights, such as the right to life and liberty, freedom of expression, and equality before the law; and social, cultural and economic rights, including the right to participate in culture, the right to food, the right to work, and the right to education . These rights empower people under particularly under difficult circumstances. The awareness about human rights is important to live life as a citizen in a democratic set up. In particular a country like India in which poverty, social disadvantage and discrimination are present in many sections. Living life with dignity demands that human rights of everybody are maintained. The traditional societies have many disparities which come in the way of ensuring human rights to different groups and communities.
The Magna Carta or “Great Charter” was one of England’s first documents containing commitments by a sovereign to his people to respect certain legal rights. All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. In order to promote human rights many international conventions, treatise and provisions have been made. Many of them have been accepted by India. In pursuance of such provisions a National Human Rights Commission has been established. It is chaired by a retired Chief Justice of Supreme Court. It is empowered to take steps for ensuring protection of human rights and taking steps to curb its violations. In recent years we have noticed many instances in which the human rights agencies in India have taken note of the atrocities done on people in prison and police custody.
A citizen is a participatory member of a political community. Citizenship is gained by meeting the legal requirements of a national, state or local government. A nation grants certain rights and privileges to its citizens. In return, citizens are expected to obey their country’s laws and defend it against its enemies. The value of citizenship varies from nation to nation. In some countries, citizenship can mean a citizen has the right to vote, the right to hold government offices, and the right to collect unemployment insurance payments, to name a few examples. Citizenship is not a passive concept. It involves active involvement in various social , political and cultural activities.
8.4 Promotion of Peace
Peace is a state in which various elements live in harmonious relationship and grow without interference in each other’s activities. At a societal level peace is necessary for growth and development. We find that countries which are engaged in war and conflict often suffer economically, socially and do not flourish and develop. Bringing in and sustaining peace in society demands many things in which the following are more important:
1). Peace Education– Just as man learns to fight and go to war, he can also learn to live peacefully. For this, it is necessary to educate the public and particularly the young men and women to live in peace so that they may learn to look upon themselves as citizens of the world.
2). Development of international relations– We need to promote conducive international relations so as to eliminate prejudice and stereotype, which are the root causes of hostility , war and violence. This can be achieved by creating opportunities for people of different parts of the world to come in contact with each other. One of the ways in which this could be achieved is to create international institutions in different regions of the world. For instance SAARC is creating opportunities for cooperation and interaction for the countries of south Asia.
3).Social and Economic Welfare– Social and economic inequalities constitute the greatest single enemy of permanent peace. In most of the places where war and conflict is taking place poverty is very common. Therefore it is important that steps be taken up to bridge the gap between the haves and have not’s.
Unit 9 Application of Psychology
Importance of Sports
The importance of sports and exercise in contributing to the physical growth, mental health, and overall well-being of children is well recognized. Parents encourage children to play and engage in a variety of sports activities. Physical education and sports also form an integral part of the school’s curriculum. The theory of multiple intelligences recognizes sports and athletics too as a form of intelligence that is no way lesser in importance than academics. In this context, sports psychology is emerging as an upcoming field dealing with psychological and emotional factors affecting sport performance.
The significance of sports for the holistic development of children and adolescents is increasingly recognized. In particular, it facilitates physical growth and psychomotor coordination. This process continues during later childhood with more formal games and sports like badminton, table tennis, aerobic exercises and team games. Sports helps improving health and raising energy level as the physical exercise is accompanied by changes in breathing and heart rate whereby oxygen supply to all parts of the body is improved. Sweating occurs which helps remove toxins from the body. Appetite is also improved.
Sports , Social Development, and Acquisition of Values
While playing games in an informal setting like the neighborhood park or the ‘street’ or while playing in a more formal school setting, children learn to follow rules and procedures as well as to develop t
eam spirit. While playing in a group or team, each player has specific roles which are assigned according to the relative strengths and weaknesses of each individual. In this setting, they learn to adhere to the rules, to adjust their behaviour in accordance with requirements of the group, to cooperate with the team for attainment of the goal, and to develop team spirit. Discipline is inculcated in the process of playing the rules of the game.
Members of the team realize the importance of being in time for practice sessions and thus the value of punctuality is acquired. Physical fitness is an essential requirement for selection in a team – so individual players learn the importance of exercise and balanced diet. The goals of the group become the goals of the individuals comprising the team and thus members learn the value of cooperation. Since each team is playing against another opposing team, a healthy competitive spirit is developed. Sports also contributes to development of ‘sportsman spirit’ wherein stress is laid on following the rules of the game and playing to the best of one’s ability regardless of the final outcome – success and failure are both taken in their stride.
Sports, Emotional Well-being and Personality
`Engaging in sports implies high levels of physical activity which can have important cathartic effect on a person i.e. by releasing bottled up energy arising from conflicts, anger and frustration. Certain neurotransmitters are released which create an overall feeling of well-being in the person. And improved blood supply, especially to the brain, improves capacity for mental work, and may be associated with higher levels persistence in activities.
These are important reasons for incorporating games, sports and aerobic exercises into the daily regimen of all persons, of all age groups.
Psychological Factors and Performance
With the rising popularity of sports and sports tournaments, there is an increased interest in the application of psychological principles to enhance performance of sportspersons. Psychologists have studied the factors affecting sports performance. It is recognized that sports performance is a result of interaction of several factors: the personality of the athlete, the environment, and the characteristics of the coach and techniques of training.
The Athlete: The main characteristics of athletes which have a bearing on performance include the following: Self-confidence and self-esteem, Ways of coping with anxiety, stress and failure, Awareness of and use of mental strategies, Personality attributes
While the skills and strategies learnt by a sportsperson are undoubtedly important – the thoughts, feelings and attitudes of the player can also affect performance, especially in a competitive situation. It is well-known that optimum levels of arousal are associated with optimum performance. High levels of anxiety in the sportsman may affect attention and concentration on the task and hinder optimum performance. On the other hand, low anxiety may be related with low arousal levels – which may fall below optimum level required for best performance. Sometimes anxiety is high when an athlete is desperate to perform well as others expectations are very high. On the other hand overconfidence can be a negative factor in performance. What is conducive to good performance is a realistic self-confidence in the player in his/ her ability to perform well, a feeling of self-efficacy emanating from possession of appropriate skill in the sport.
Another characteristic associated with good performance whether during the learning of a skill, or performance in a competitive situation is an inherent optimism. Optimism is the inclination to expect favourable outcomes. Optimism is an example of positive thinking and is known to reduce anxiety and cope with anxiety, which in turn is associated with better performance.
Awareness and use of appropriate strategies is also likely to lead to improved performance. One such strategy is mental practice prior to performing a motor skill. It is a kind of mental rehearsal and can reduce stress and help in coping with anxiety.
The Environment: The environment during learning as well as during performance can have a bearing on the player. Any instructions given in an angry manner can affect the listening and remembering of the information.
The presence of spectators can affect performance in different ways. One the one hand presence of spectators may bring out the best efforts of the sportsperson. However in case of a player who has not adequately mastered a complex sports skill, higher levels of anxiety and low level of confidence can adversely affect performance. A similar effect can occur if members of the audience are perceived as threatening. If opponents are perceived as being more skilled or have been seen as winning in previous tournaments, performance can be impacted negatively. On the other hand, it could be viewed as an opportunity to try their best. The captain of the team can play a role in determining the impact in the above situations.
The Coach: The role of the Coach is important in many ways – in imparting the specific sports skill, in facilitating effective use of practice time and in motivating the player. Naturally the effectiveness of the coach is dependent on his communication skill and leadership style. It is here that the consultant psychologist’s intervention can be of value. Psychologist can facilitate the coach in understanding of psychological processes that underline learning and performance of skills and by enabling him to apply learning principles in skill instructions, acquisition and retention.
Many other instructional and communication techniques can also be used. For example, it is found that in the teaching of sports skills, visual information is more effective than verbal information. It is also important that new skills and strategies should be related to something learnt earlier, as this improves retention. Learning and performance are better if the coach clearly states the goals of the instructional session i.e. learner should be clearly told what he or she is expected to do after instruction. Another important tool in learning of skills, is the use of feedback, both informative feedback as well as feedback to enhance motivation.
Also, when sports skills are practiced in a realistic environment, it increases the probability of it being replicated. Thus there could be simulation of actual game conditions during practice sessions e.g. by having spectators.
Thus psychological principles can be applied to enhance sports performance. The psychologist can be involved as a consultant to the coach, or may be a personal counselor to individual sportsmen or team.
9.2 Psychology in the Educational Context
Applications of psychology in educational settings deal with facilitating effective teaching and learning. It is often termed as instructional psychology, school psychology or educational psychology. The main goal of all these sub disciplines is to understand how humans learn in educational settings, the effectiveness of educational interventions, the psychology of teaching, and the social psychology of schools as organizations.
Educational psychology focuses on the study of learning outcomes, student attributes, and instructional processes related to the classroom and the school, such as the amount of instructional time or individual differences in school learning. An educational psychologist helps gathering information for teachers and parents when students have academic or behavioral problems. They assist in evaluating students’ abilities and assessing their strengths and weaknesses.
Together, the parents, teachers and educational psychologists formulate plans to help students
learn more effectively. Educational psychologists work mostly in elementary and secondary school classrooms. They may work in other settings such as colleges, consulting organizations, corporations, industry, military and religious institutions.
A school psychologist works with students, teachers, parents and administrators to resolve students learning and behavior problems. They evaluate the effectiveness of academic programs, behavior management procedures, and other services provided in the school setting. School counselors help people to accommodate to change or to make changes in their lifestyle. They use techniques such as interviewing and testing to advise the pupil how to deal with problems encountered in everyday life.
Educational psychology informs a wide range of specialties within educational studies, including instructional design, educational technology, curriculum development, organizational learning, special education and classroom management. Thus educational psychology is the systematic study of learners, learning and teaching. Some of the main issues addressed in educational psychology are discussed below.
1) Theories of development: To understand the characteristics of learners in childhood, adolescence, adulthood and old age, educational psychology develops and applies theories of human development often represented as stages through which people pass as they mature. Developmental theories describe changes in mental abilities (Jean Piaget), social roles, moral reasoning (Kohlberg) and beliefs about the nature of knowledge. For example educational psychologists have researched the instructional applicability of Jean Piaget’s theory of development, according to which children mature through four stages of cognitive capability, Piaget has influenced educational practices by introducing concepts such as cognitive constructivism and emphasizing developmentally appropriate educational reforms.
2) Development during childhood and adolescence: Economic and social factors have led to an increasing demand for early childhood education programs including day care centers, nursing schools, preschool programs. Research findings have tended to support trends towards early intervention programs. Developmentally appropriate practices, instruction based on individuals characteristics and needs rather than on age are being emphasized.
3) Student diversity: Each person has an individual profile of characteristics, abilities and challenges that result from learning and development. These manifest as individual differences in intelligence, creativity, cognitive style, motivation, capacity to process information, communicate and relate to others. The most prevalent disabilities found among school age children are ADHD, learning disability, dyslexia and speech disorder
Education psychologists help in identifying learning related problems of these groups and arrange for specialized training. Also children classified as gifted are often provided with accelerated or enriched programs. Children with identified deficits may be provided with enhanced education in specific skills such as phonological awareness.
4) Behavioral theories of learning: Two fundamental assumptions that underlie formal education system are that students (a) retain knowledge and skills they acquire in school and (b) can apply them in situations outside the classroom. The principles of behavioral learning such as reinforcement, schedules of learning, memory strategies are used to enhance learning process. Note making, summarizing and outlining focus on the meaningful organization of information. The behavioral learning theories are central to the application of educational psychology in classroom, management, discipline, motivation, instructional modes and other areas.
5) Cognitive theories of learning: Among current educational psychologists the cognitive perspective is more widely held. Cognitive theories claim that memory structures determine how information is perceived, processed, stored, retrieved and forgotten. Metacognitive skills help students learn by thinking about controlling and effectively using their own thinking process. Students also differ in their cognitive learning styles.
6) Effective classroom learning: The educational psychologists emphasize on teacher control of most classroom events and the presentation of structured lessons. The focus is on active teaching, lesson organization and examples, demonstrations etc. The teacher should monitor, collect and assess the students work and provide feedback. Also the students should transfer this learning to outside classroom situations. Problem solving skills have to be taught.
7) Accommodating instruction to meet individual need: It is essential to accommodate instruction in the classroom to cater to students’ differences in abilities and academic achievement. This may be done by grouping students according to their needs and performance. Students who are at risk i.e. these who are likely to fail academically, for any reason may be provided with compensatory education or special education or exposed to early intervention programmes.
8) Motivating students to learn: Motivation is an internal state that activates, guides and sustains behavior. Educational psychological research on motivation is concerned with the violation or will that students bring to a task, their level of interest and intrinsic motivation, the personally held goals that guide their behavior, and their belief about the causes of their success or failure. There are different kinds, intensities, and directions of motivation. Motivation to learn is critically important to students and teachers. Teachers have to enhance intrinsic motivation and use an effective method of reward, feedback and incentives.
9) Exceptional Learners with exceptionalities: Learners with exceptional characteristics are students who have special educational needs in relation to societal or school norms. They include gifted and talented learners and those with special needs. For them special education programs are required.
10) Assessing academic achievement: Educational psychologists develop various tools to assess the level of assessing academic achievement of students. Standardized tests that are uniform in context, administration and scoring therefore allow for the comparison of results across classrooms and schools. The educational psychologists work on grading standards which may be absolute or relative.
Thus educational psychology deals with knowledge about child development, behavioral change individual education programming, counseling and assessment techniques. The skills essential in the educational psychologist include evaluation of children’s needs, written and oral communication skills and well-developed people skills. Educational psychologists engage in research related to above areas.
9.3 Application of Psychology in Communication
Students may refer to pages 182 – 188 of NCERT book on Psychology, CLASS XII.
9.4 Applying Psychology in Organizational Context
No other human creation has proved as powerful as organizations. Indeed in today’s world organizations have assumed a significant place in conducting and regulating our everyday lives. We are connected with them in two main ways. We work for them and also consume the products delivered by them. Organizations are found in large and small sizes and specialize in various functions (e.g. service, manufacturing, and marketing). They may be owned by the Government (public sector organizations) or by individuals/ families (e.g. private organizations run by business houses like TATA, Birla, and Ambani). Examples of organizations that you must have heard
about include DPS, Apollo Hospital, State Bank of India, ICCI Bank, Air India, SAIL, ONGC, GAIL, McDonand restaurant, National Congress Party, Action Aid, Oxford University Press, and DTC.
MEANING OF ORGANIZATION
From above examples you may realize that organizations are structures deliberately created by an individual or a group to seek fulfillment of a set of shared goals and objects. They serve different purposes in various areas of life such as health, education, transportation, agriculture, and banking.
Organizations are pervasive in their presence. In one way or the other everybody is interacting with small or large organizations in different capacities. Organizations should not be equated with offices, factories or industries. They should also not be confused with buildings or machines. Organizations exist and function with people. It is the behaviour of people that matters most in running the organizations. For instance a hospital can run and help patients in gaining health only with a coordinated effort of doctors, nurses, technical staff, and supporting staff. All of them play different roles and hospital’s success is a joint function of the concerted efforts of all these people. The same is true for a school or a factory.
The field of organizational psychology, also known as organizational behaviour (OB) or industrial/ organizational (IO) psychology helps understanding, facilitating and shaping the behaviour of the people working in organizations so that the organization may function effectively, perform well, adapt to the needs and demands of the external environment and grow. If you analyze any organization you will notice that they are situated in the external environment and are reciprocally related to the constraints and opportunities present in the environment and culture. In reality all organizations take inputs from their external environment (e.g. raw material, capital, employees, policies, rules and regulations) and after undertaking various types of processing produce or deliver various kinds of productions (including services) to the external environment in which they are consumed.
Aspects of Organization: You will notice that organizations are created to achieve certain goals which are not attainable by a single individual. All organizations have a structure and several functions.
The structure of organization specifies the division of jobs and the way they are assigned to the employees of the organization. It determines the flow of events within an organizational setting. You must have observed that each organization consists of many departments (e.g. finance, production, administration, marketing, human resource) and each department specializes in its work or function. Normally the employees working in one department performs jobs that contribute one main function. Thus individual jobs are clubbed or grouped together in one department. This helps decentralization and enhances the work efficiency. Taken together all the departments work in coordination and lend support to overall functioning of the organization.
All organizations have an authority structure. Usually it is vertically organized with increase in power and authority as one move upward in the hierarchy. Organizations differ in the manner in which authority is distributed across the hierarchy. In more centralized organizations people at higher positions have greater authority. They control, give orders and try to ensure that the subordinates follow their orders. They have power to reward and punish their subordinates. Some organizations are very formal and maintain standardized procedures of work. In less formal organizations the functioning is flexible.
In any organization many people work and coordination among them becomes necessary for the success of organization. Coordination essentially involves monitoring and control. You must have noticed in school, hospital or office that the members of any organization are entrusted with different degrees of power, authority and responsibility. The members of organization divide the responsibilities among themselves to carry out the objectives. This introduces division of labour.
Since organizations involved people, who are called human resource, the attitudes, perceptions, motives, values, commitments, conflicts and competition of the people working within the organizations become important. The balancing of home/ family and work responsibilities is becoming more and more crucial. The introduction of technology has added newer dimensions to organizational behaviour. Organizational psychologists study all these and related aspects.
Area of Application : The role of psychology in the context of organizations is quite diverse and multifaceted. The subspecialty of OB addresses a number of specific psychological concerns such as recruitment, training, placement, career planning, motivating the members of organization, mentoring, coaching, maintaining a competitive edge of one organization over other organizations, providing leadership, counseling, and managing stresses. You will easily notice that the role of psychologists is central to all these functions. In fact all these areas in themselves have become specialized fields of study and research.
In order to illustrate applications of psychology in organizations we may highlight two areas i.e. personnel selection and managerial behaviour.
Personnel selection: Selecting competent people for various jobs is a prerequisite of any effective organization. For this psychologists undertake job analysis and prepare specific job descriptions which clearly spell out the contents of job along with nature of work environment and specific conditions of employment. To ensure that people with right kind of knowledge, skill and values get recruited advertisement is done and applications are invited. Application forms are created with provision of detailed information about qualification, experience and skills of the applicants. They are also required to furnish recommendation letters from employees or experts in the area. The applications are screened and candidates are asked to appear for written tests and or interview. In recent years performance simulation is adopted in which prospective candidates for a job are tested at assessment centers. They are given actual problems and are asked to play business games, and exercises.
Managerial Behavior: Managers are central to the functioning of any organization. They are involved in almost all stages of the life cycle of an organization. They plan the organization and set the goals and strategies to attain them. They recruit the personnel for performing different functions. They provide leadership and coordinate the different components so that expected level of performance is achieved. While performing the job of manager, therefore, they play three main roles i.e. interpersonal, informational and decisional. They communicate and relate to people, deal with relevant information by receiving and giving them and take decisions of various kinds. As leader a manager can adopt different styles of working. They can be more or less participative and use authority in different degrees. In Indian context a nurturant task leader has been found more effective. Such a leader provides nurturance contingent on task performance.
Today’s world of work is changing very fast. Introduction of newer technologies require different kinds of attitudes and preparation. Now number of independent workers is increasing and organizations are reducing the size of organization (downsizing!) and ‘outsource’ many activities. Also the boundaries between work and home are breaking down. Using Internet people can and do work from home. In this scenario job stress is increasing. This requires intervent
ions at different levels including individual, organizational and individual-organization interface. Balancing work and family roles is emerging as an important issue among the professionals. With globalization the work force is becoming more diverse in terms of cultural background and place of work. Organizational psychologists are attending to all these issues.